a scavenger hunting app





GeoSync is a scavenger hunting app, designed to give users a modern feel to an old pastime. The primary goal for GeoSync was to be a potential competitor, but also have a fun and creative edge.


Design an app that allows users to enjoy social scavenger hunts for real objects and locations in their own cities.


  • Competitor analysis

  • User interviews

  • User personas

  • Problem statement

  • User journeys

  • User flows

  • Information architecture

  • Wireframes

  • Prototype

  • Usability testing





The apps I chose to analyze were Geocaching and Munzee. Both have credible user bases and they relatively offer the same design approach.

The one thing that really stood out to me is that both competitors have user-created locations. This causes a great amount spam, especially when it comes to game titles.

As a result of the competitor analyses, aside from a clean interface and a ton of locations to hunt for, it appeared that users wanted a user community. Scavenger hunting has always been about having a good time with friends, so it would make sense to offer social media connections, a friends list, and game invites to GeoSync.



Using the information gathered from the competitor analysis, my interview script focused on how often users play games, how users play games, and what they look for in games. As a result of my interviews, most users play mobile games on a regular basis, looking for game progression, customization, and creativity. It also came out that most users would prefer to hunt for short distance and easy to access locations. On the other hand, there was a small percentage that wanted a challenge (which would consist of long distances and hard to access locations).



With my interviewees in mind, I further summarized the interview answers with some affinity mapping. I then gathered some final insights and formed a problem statement.


Our future users need a way to scavenger hunt with accuracy and ease, because we know their time is precious, and we don’t want our users to work excessively for what they want. We also want the app to be fun and offer means of customization, progression, rewards, creativity, and replayability.



After defining the primary and secondary user personas, I wanted to turn each persona into a more technical outline, primarily to better visualize each persona’s needs and goals.



After visualizing the user journeys, it was time to take my technical outlines and turn them into something more useful for the end product. To begin, I wrote down the task flow criteria and analysis. Then, I designed the user flows themselves.





Keeping my user personas in mind, I created the initial sitemap for GeoSync. After taking a final look at it, I realized there was a bit to much going on, so I took back to my interviewees. I had all of them do some card sorting, which would ultimately help narrow down the app’s future navigation.

As a result of the card sorting, I got some really interesting insights and narrowed down GeoSync’s navigation from six pages to four pages: Games, Rewards, Notifications, and Profile.



As I usually do, I took a very simple and clean design approach. With that, I jotted down some sketches for my MVP’s, then turned those sketches into mid-fidelity wireframes (using Axure), and created a clickable prototype (using Prott).





I wrote a usability test plan, then took my mid-fidelity prototype to six participants. The primary goal of the usability study was testing the app’s initial learnability. I wanted to make sure all tasks and processes were easily understandable for all users, considering GeoSync’s targeted audience is so broad.

Because GeoSync was in a mid-fidelity state, I expected a lot of negative feedback, which I knew would help me a lot in the near future. Overall, GeoSync was in an ok spot. It needed some tweaks, but nothing to major. Because of the usability tests, I learned that the app has great potential, but needs to be a little less bland and basic.



Taking my usability test results into play, I updated GeoSync with high-fidelity mockups (using Adobe XD). I also added some more features to make GeoSync feel more sophisticated. With that, I ran another round of usability tests, and all seemed good. GeoSync was complete.





This project was intended to show my overall, UX design process. There was no further development upon the second round of usability tests, as this app is merely a conceptual project. GeoSync took about three months to design.


  • Add some more robust rewards / incentives to increase replayability


  • Letting go of original design is challenging, but it's necessary to create a better product.

  • I have learned how to implement accessibility (WCAG) guidelines.

  • Messing around with color contrasts (with WebAIM) and creating color pallets (with ColorHunt) is a new pastime of mine.