A Mobile Marketplace to Rent or Buy Clothing on Campus
Apparel and Fashion
The client is a young university student in search of a digital partner to help turn her idea into a working product as soon as possible.
The idea was to create a mobile marketplace for students to borrow/loan or buy/sell clothing with other students on their campus. The client had done research to back the need of such a marketplace as more and more students are showing interest in borrowing a clothing rather than buying a new one.
The intention was to take this across campuses and make a student-only app, so that students can list their clothes and accessories for sale or rent. As tuition fees are sky-rocketing across the US, such an app allows students to try new brands on every occasion without paying a full price.
Now, the idea was there. But the client was unsure of how to take this forward. We got along instantly as we liked the idea and a few of our young team members gave a few vital inputs right from the discovery session.
Creating a roadmap with user-flows and prototypes
We held a product discovery session and chalked-out a roadmap to launch an MVP as soon as possible. At first, we worked on ideation and enhancing user experience and then created high-fidelity mockups with clickable prototypes for a better understanding. Later, during the development phase, our agile practices ensured a smooth flow of work alongwith a few feature add-ons. Also, to ensure that only students can use this app, we pinned on registration only through university email address, which every student must be having.
A user-design with some swag
This was a unique project. Right from the client to the team working on the project, everyone involved are millennials who faced such problem not long ago in their lives. Also, DressyClub was not going to be only a resale site but a social platform as well. So, our design team started working on creating a millennial-friendly user design with easy work-flows. As youngsters prefer a minimal product which doesn’t waste much of their time and solves a problem quickly, the product was envisioned keeping this trait in mind.
List, browse, rent or buy. Keeping it simple.
Using this app was kept quite simple i.e., registration by using individual university email address, easy listing of their items (clothes), easy browsing with high-quality images, fixing a meeting with a seller/lender (a fellow student), and a 30-minute trial period for any cloth listed for sale or rent. The idea was to make sure the clothes are of a perfect fit, so that both the parties can go ahead with the transaction. Since the students share the same campus, it will be easy for them to meet at a place and get a trial rather than ordering it and getting it at their doorsteps and then finding out it is not a good fit.
Billing Admin Manager, Real-time chat, Raise an issue before approval
To ensure the above scenario is as easy as envisioned, we had to toil hard in putting a few things in place. First of all, the payment system. We pinned on Stripe as our payment gateway and made it mandatory for all users to link their Stripe account for automatic debits/credits. This was quite a task as integrating Stripe came up with a few technical challenges with respect to our project timeline. We also added a support funnel to solve any user grievances in a time-bound manner.
Also, an admin section was created for the client which would enable them in managing the overall operations post launch. Admins will be able to add more universities, colleges, and more such locations in the next phase of scaling up the product according to initial user feedback.
Our team pulled-off a challenging task of completing both the discovery workshop and MVP development within a specified time-frame. With our agile methodology which we follow in all MVP development, we made an iOs app within 5–scrum cycles, with the total time not exceeding 10 weeks.
The product is up for a launch in a short span of time and the initial target is to reach at least 20 universities across the USA.