Overview
Goodreads is a social network for book readers. It allows you to track your reading habits, create wishlists and receive book suggestions.
Book reading, to the point of joining a social network for it, is a very niche hobby. That's why Goodreads becomes a fertile place for authors be active, promote their books and interact with the community. With several active users and the backbone of Amazon, it's a social network without any resemblance of a competition.
DISCLAIMER
This project jas been desiged purely for education purposes
and may not reflect the views or plans of Goodreads

Research
I am an user of Goodreads. Using and suffering through bad mobile experience was what prompted me to develop this redesign. Yet, I didn't want to be colored only by my own experiences. I digged inside the communities and groups of Goodreads  to understand how they use it's features. It was pivotal to grasp the complexity and usability of the network
Persona
Danielle, the user is an avid book reader. She reads between 15 and 20 books per year.
She works 9-to-5 and likes to go out after a day of work. That's why her time for reading is during the commute. She prefers to use her Kindle, since it weighs less, is more portable and she can change from a book to another easily.
With a wide range of genre interests she uses Goodreads to store her wishlists. She uses the book tracking feature constantly in which she inputs the data everyday. 
Everyday, she discovers that some of her friends are reading a new book, but she feels there's a lack of ways she can interact with them. The app doesn't offer enough features and pleasantries for being social.
Reading is a lonely habit.
Should it be?
Problem
Goodreads tries to be a lot of things and it does very well on most of them. Yet, there's a lot of improvement to be taken in the visual and usability areas.
The interface looks dated. The color of the identity brings the sensation of something old, this is aggravated by the choice of typography and design choices of the menus. It looks off by the current standards. Although visual choices can work well indepentendly of the usability, an outdated visual can put off an interested user base.
Goodreads is a big site. It's lengthy and deep, with layers and layers of features on top of each other. The result is that the path to each of those is mildly obscure. It generates dubious and explorative tapping patterns.
"I doesn't matter how many times I need to click, as long as each click is a mindless, unambiguous choice."
Don't Make Me Think, Steve Krug

This becomes a problem when the app needs a loading screen between most of its transistions. Instead of storing the essential data on the phone and syncinc with the server, every menu change is riddled with loading wheels. This breaks the flow of the navigation and worsens the user experience.
The interface takes excessive space of the screen without delivering the right content for the user. For mobile users, using the social network becomes a chore. 
Goals
Clean up the interface
Reduce the variety in typography: size and families.
New users have a ease and familiar time going inside the app.
Don't change completely so the actual user base has to relearn the app architecture.
Provide ease of access to the most used features
Everything must be between not much more than 2 or 3 taps away.
Access to all features has to be clear and unambiguous.
Remove and reduce the loading between screens
Most of the data has to be stored in the app. Only notifications, timeline updates and search data has to be pulled from the server.
Use pull-in menus and overlays to reduce the number of screen transitions.
Create a way to quickly update the currently reading book
Quick access on the side menu or on the main navigation.
Improve the social experience between friends
Create reactions to the friends updates.
Improve the Challenge experience with social features.
Bring gamification to the app.
Sketching
My first step in the redesign was to put on paper the information gathered.  Then I stablished quickly which patterns and relations I wanted to improve.
The sketching process allowed me to jot down ideas without aiming for alignment or perfection and solving small problems. The first structures and rationale between the navigation were done on paper first. 
Using the paper might be intimidating at first, but once you go over your barriers you can maximize your output and even create and scratch ideas faster than any vector program.
This process allows me to only go to the softwares when I need to design mockup with higher visual fidelity.
User Flow
The sketches became messy and heavily annotated. I developed a basic and cleaner userflow, to guide the necessity of menus, submenus and to improve the user navigation. This map was slowly developed into a wireframe and finally into the layouts.
Mockups
Goodreads has massive levels of information on their screens. This becomes the main reason that makes the app look so clunky and complex. Everything is there. Yet, most of these features are never used, specially on the app.
The visual and experience design had a single goal. Make the user reach anything easier and faster. With a two-headed bar, the user has quick access to almost all functions on the app. Two taps and Danielle can reach every main screen.
The use of overlays and pull menus, saves space during screen transitions. That way, the user can keep going on his workflow without being interrupted by loading bars,
Challenges on the app are a way to play against yourself. You can take on reading challenges each year and Goodreads tracks your progress. An awesome feature that stimulates the user to read, but still a lonely game.
In this project I suggested a new way to play Challenges. A social one.
You have the ability to issue Challenges against your friends. You can customize the rules and settings and if your Friend accepts, it's time to read!
Key Takeaways
The user wants to use Goodreads. Bring the important features to the forefront.
It's a Social network, making it social and increasing the number of ways that you can interact with your friends can raise adoption.
The research and investigation for the app, showed that Goodreads should explore better their most used features and stay away of blogging, event tagging and other services that only crowd the interface without giving much to the community,
Tackling the desktop version and bringing this new mobile experience there is the next goal of this project.
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