Importance of UX research in the automotive industry
User research can help us understand the shifts in consumer behavior for better-aligned products. To be successful, businesses need to perform user research to find out if their products are aligned with the change. If the products can cater to the current needs better. Questions such as — how will you ensure less number of features deliver the high-quality of experience to the customers? or What will your product/ service look like when delivered on a 100% virtual platform?
User research lays the ground work upon which product companies can build relevant products, and launch in the market with more confidence leading to business success. Let us illustrate how a thorough UX research helped us in a connected mobile application design in the automotive domain.
YUJ Designs partnered with a large automotive conglomerate to envision a new-generation connected vehicle solution platform for the Indian markets. It is an app that adopts the first-of-its-kind experience for electric vehicles. Our teams addressed every aspect of user research, design, and development of the product when working on the project, co-creating the solutions.
The advancements in the automotive sector have enabled automotive companies, to provide safe, responsible, and sustainable solutions to their customers. Our purpose was to translate these intentions and create a connected experience for people.
Capturing the Nuances of User Behavior
The Indian markets are changing. People are buying cars with set expectations in their mind, and demands value addition in products. Now a typical car buyer is increasingly looking out for the importance of safety in their cars. Their preferences are changing with the times, gradually leaning towards the products that provide them a holistic package. A thorough user research became the key to delivering the optimum results.
We performed user research with EV users in the US, EV and non-EV users in India. The research revolved around gathering users’ expectations from a connected app.
With the users of EV cars, we performed research with goals to understand the current expectations of car owners understanding their comfort, convenience, usage pattern, and preferences.
We probed for deeper insights on what is the discomfort or inconvenience faced in the absence of connected vehicle products. The research helped us understand the must-haves v/s nice to haves for current users, what the users expect from their current car companies etc.
We spoke with non-EV users to understand their expectations as well. Significant insights led us to define the app with mere 22 features, instead of the 55+ features envisioned by the business.
Insights that Informed the Designs
- Ensured safety and enhanced security by providing information updates, critical alerts, and tracking ability
- Straight-forward and simplified design with the help of Intuitive, minimalistic, and simple design language
- Deliver personalization and connectedness through identifying user choices and allowing connectivity with other devices.
These user research insights enabled the simplification of the definition of the app. We found that users’ main concern was about recharging the vehicle and safety, security in the case of shared vehicles.
It’s all about the experience
The app was designed to deliver a ubiquitous experience to maintain the users’ focus on the vehicle. We focused our energies on improving the experience of mobility and quality of life for the customers. The application we designed rethinks what a digitally and physically connected experience can be. All of this while removing any impediments and letting the user enjoy the drive.