USDOfficial is a blockchain-based financial technology platform. USDO is the stablecoin USDOfficial issued, 1:1 pegged to USD. The product was built from scratch and launched the first version in August 2018. It offers digital asset exchange and asset management.
The USDOfficial’s mission is to provide a real security 3-in-1 (USD/USDO conversion, cryptocurrency transaction, and cryptocurrency exchange) exchange platform for cryptocurrency investors. The market shows a big demand of buying and trading digital currencies. There are more and more new investors joining in this market, and their concern is security.
Through every stage of my work, I had put users first, understanding their needs, as they seek a secure, efficient, and reliable investment platform.
By using various resources and my learnings, my goal was to design a holistic experience that compliments user desires.
To understand the market and users better, I researched the overall crypto market, studied the competitors, and defined the primary target users.
First of all, I used storyboarding to get a full picture of the user’s need and how their full experience would be like with this product.
The storyboard provided a great help understanding the dynamic of the product and services, thereby determing main features of the APP.
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Onboarding experience provides users the first impression of the product. My goal for this part was to onboard users as fast as possible. The logic itself is straightforward. Initially, I sketched out the user flow.
Before diving into the design, I did a competitive analysis with Coinbase (The largest stablecoin platform in the world) to understand how they approached this feature.
- Less information required from the user on each page
- Automatically jump out and back into the APP may require more cognitive load from the user.
For USDOfficial, I wanted to keep the onboarding process as fast and straightforward as possible. Because for a brand new platform, to onboard genesis users was top priority.
After some exploration and iterations, I came up with the following sketch
Coinbase requires tons of information from new users, such as full name, location, country, complete address, date of birth, phone number, etc. I decided only to acquire an email address and a password. All the other information will be asked later during the KYC (Know your customer) process.
Therefore, I simplified the sign-up process to only one step. After a couple of iterations, I ended up with the design by adding a “get code” button next to the “enter email code” input field for verifying the email address instead of directing the user to leave the APP. It reduces cognitive load and gives the control back to users.
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Supporting by fully-licensed commercial banks, the conversion between USD and USDO is served at highest level of regulation and compliance requirements.
Bank wire was the only way to deposit USDO and convert it back to USD, which was a significant limitation of the product when compared with competitors. So with the limitation, the task here was to provide the user with USDOfficial bank wire information and obtain user's bank wire information.
As shown on the storyboard, acquiring USDO was depositing USD to the bank, and redeeming USDO was cashing out USD from the bank. Although both were actions finishing offline, it was better to have a pattern similar to Wallet, which had a pair of actions-deposit and withdrawal. It would be easier for users to understand the dynamic of the product. As such, the big picture of USD/USDO page would include "acquire USDO" and "Redeem USDO" buttons, followed by available amount, and transfer history.
To provide users an engaging experience with the process, I decided to include "status" of transfers in transfer history to keep users posted at all times. And the user flow of this part is as following.
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The Cryptocurrency Wallet stores the public and private keys for transferring cryptocurrencies. To provide an intuitive deposit and withdrawal experience, I researched competitive products, and also learned from traditional banking mobile APPs.
There are several Wallet products in the market, such as Coinbase, ImToken, Huobi, Robinhood, etc. I would follow the tradition to include two main actions - deposit token and withdraw token to be the main factors of the page, because my goal was to provide users with a smooth experience without extra learning attempt.
Through learning from various competitors, I came up with a couple of choices to arrange tokens. And I wanted to maintain a similar design pattern to the USD/USDO conversion, resulting in the final sketch as following.
After the exploration, I decided to only include essential functions for the current stage, which were deposit token, withdraw token, and transfer history. After the testing phase, more features might be added to the product as needed, but for the moment, I would keep it as simple and straightforward as possible.
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The purpose of investors trading cryptocurrencies is similar to trading stocks in the capital market, which is for wealth management. At the design level, their mechanism is identical as well. Therefore, I began by studying the competitors.
To empathize with users better, I first turned myself into a user. I created an account with Binance and Robinhood. Binance doesn't accept fiat currency, so I had to use the OTC platform to obtain bitcoin or ethereum first. When I wanted to place an order, I needed to view the K-chart to have an overview of this token and keep an eye on market history. After determining the content, I sketched out the user flow of this part.
Based on the learning and my own hands-on experience as a user, I had a couple of attampts and finalized the sketch as following.
The goal of the exchange page was to provide users current crypto market information and allow them to place orders based on it. When users trade, they tend to keep an eye on statistics, price, and market information at all times. Therefore, to provide a good user experience on crypto trading, I put buy and sell forms on the same page of the market information. However, they will not appear until users try to place an order. In this way, space can be saved for effectively showing more market history.
Besides, I noticed that the "Buy" buttons are always green-ish, and the "Sell" buttons are red-ish. I decided to keep with the tradition and selected the right red and green colors to fit the overall color palette of USDOfficial.
I experienced some stressful challenges during this project, yet conquering them provided me with valuable assets that further hone my skillsets.
This project provided me with opportunities to train my design thinking. Product managements who propose design requirements tend to have an engineer mindset. They focus on the problem and solutions of the business. As a designer, translating business goals to the product that meets user’s objectives is crucial.
I also learned that interactive design guideline deliverables are significantly critical in working with engineers. It plays a role as the language in establishing a communication between engineers and designers. A clear guideline can ensure that the project can be carried out efficiently and orderly.