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Research & Concepting

Let’s discover what your customers or users need

Most projects start with Research & Concepting to make sure we thoroughly understand your project. We’ll help you pinpoint the right digital product – a combination of customer/user needs and business goals – with a robust plan for development and launch. We’ll create an interactive wireframe to visualize your application or website, and a prioritized estimate to keep you in control of cost.

Schedule a call to begin

It was easy to talk about technology options. OddBird was both flexible (working within the constraints of our existing systems) and opinionated (bringing context from past experience).

—Matthew King, Engineering Manager at Second Measure

What You Get

This process delivers all the information required to take your project to the next step. We’ll help you understand the full scope of your vision, experiment with interactive visualization, define the Minimum Viable Product (MVP), get to know your customers on a new level, and see a full estimate for design and development. Use the Research & Concepting deliverables to present your idea to your board or CEO, or to take the leap into creating your web project!


Together we’ll discuss the goals, scope, and requirements of the project and create a map for our journey. Some of the information may be available in planning documents you have already created. This process includes a review of technical, brand, and marketing goals as needed. Below are a few sample questions.

What is the goal of the application? In other words, when it’s done and working great, what specific outcomes will occur? Are we trying to close sales? Are we telling a story? Are we earning permission to follow up? Are we hoping that people will watch or learn?

Who are we trying to reach? Is it everyone? Existing customers? A certain kind of prospect? What are the existing apps and sites that this group has demonstrated they enjoy interacting with?

Does your audience have specific accessibility needs? Basic accessibility is included. Do varying ability levels play a role? Languages or other cultural/location differences? What web browsers and mobile devices do we hope to support?

User Profiles

Next we will create User Profiles to help us imagine a day in the life of your users. When and where do they use the application? What are they trying to do on the tool, and why? Below is a sample excerpt from a User Profile.

User 1 - Coach In the morning, Sam sits down at her desk in her office and opens CoachHub on her desktop in Chrome browser. She skims the dashboard and notices two alerts — new customer signups — that she needs to respond to right away. She clicks on one customer name and is taken directly to their profile information. Sam quickly browses their list of needs and clicks on her calendar to confirm the meeting date the new customer requested. It is easy to continue to the next customer because the tool bar with alerts still appears at the top of this page. After taking care of the immediate tasks…

Interactive Wireframe

We will also create a basic, interactive design of the application, showing the movement of users through core interactions. We’ll make it look good, but lo-fi and unbranded, including several linked gray-scale pages. Wireframes are a great way to start visualizing your web product or site — helping us get into the specifics of what your app should do. Wireframes are also a fantastic tool to get investor, CEO, or board approval.

Sample Interactive Wireframe

Sample Interactive Wireframe showing one laptop sized screen and the mobile view of the same content with clickable links.

User Stories

Using the Goals, User Profiles, Interviews, and Wireframe we will create a list of expected features or “stories” written from the perspective of individuals. The final list of User Stories represents all the ways people will interact with the web application or site. User Stories help us provide an accurate estimate, and collaborate with you to prioritize tasks, keeping you in control of the cost. Below is a sample set of User Stories. Large projects can have over 100 Stories.

As a Coach, I want…

  • to see a dashboard.
  • to check alerts.
  • to see and confirm appointments on a calendar.
  • to view a client’s profile with need requests.

As a Client, I want…

  • to create a profile.
  • to request an appointment on a calendar.
  • to select specific services from a list.

Data Model/Glossary

What are the core concepts/objects around which the application is built? These are the data models. What are the relationships between the models? What data attributes does each model have, and what is the data-type for each attribute? Giving everything a name and describing the relationships will help guide development, and keep the entire team on the same page.

Itemized & Prioritized Estimate

We’ll estimate each User Story individually, providing you with an itemized hourly estimate, organized into phases where appropriate. We’ll work with you to add, remove, and rearrange features to find the right balance of functionality and budget.

Contact us to learn more

Get to Know Your Industry

The purpose of a web app or site is to improve life for people. We offer these additional items to help you get to know the people who will interact with your digital product more fully. Let’s find out what’s familiar to them, where they are struggling, and what would make their lives easier.

Competitor Overview

Let’s take a look at existing web apps and companies that serve a similar audience to get an overview of industry trends and potential pitfalls to avoid. We’ll do a more detailed analysis of a direct competitor, asking questions like “what are the specific features this competitor is using to serve people?” and “how comfortable do users feel when using this competitor’s web app?”

User Interviews

Because your digital product needs to serve different people with distinct needs, we would like to have direct conversations with a variety of users in order to create something they will all find useful. These interviews can happen over the phone, via video chat, or through an online survey.

Google Form used to gather research from prospective users

Sample User Survey using Google Forms.

We’re here for you

Ask us anything. We want to answer your questions, and get to know you – your needs, goals, and expertise – so we can provide thoughtful advice, and help guide you to a successful launch of your web project.

Schedule a call with Miriam