Moving to NYC these last few months has been really hectic. Life here in general is hectic. From chasing the morning bus to weaving through sidewalk traffic, to running between hospital departments, I never really fully understood what it meant to live a busy life until I moved out here. Time and energy have become so scarce that basic life tasks, like visiting the laundromat, are almost seen as inconveniences! Grocery shopping is one of those tasks, made particularly difficult by not having a car or a market within walking distance. So anything to help make that easier is more than welcome, which is why I decided to facelift this next YC company: Instacart.
Instacart is trying to be the Amazon Prime of groceries. A few taps of the screen and in an hour your groceries are waiting for you at the door! That’s it. Although they’re only in SF right now, I’m hoping they’ll soon expand their service to NYC. Services like Seamless.com have become essential to me, and I’m sure that Instacart would be infinitely more so.
Because they’re mainly a mobile-focused company, I decided to facelift their iPhone app:
I went with a layout that more mirrored that of a conventional supermarket. Every category selected in the title bar would be an aisle populated with its various subsections of grocery products. Speaking of the title bar, I’ve recently felt that many iOS apps waste a lot of valuable space by having the name of the app take up about 75% of the space of the main navigation bar – space that could be better utilized. So I threw the name out and replaced it with a drop down menu and search button. People would then be able to browse Instacart by either category or individual search. I think the information hierarchy is more clearly laid out here than in their current design. I also wanted to make this the App Store of groceries, which is why this design is obviously more visual and streamlined. You never leave the main content area here when shopping. Browsing products, viewing descriptions, and adding items to your cart are all done on the same screen. Overall, I think I achieved a more visual, fresh, organized, and intuitive design.
Instacart folks, feel free to reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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