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Snapchat's UI

Unveiling the Magic: A Deep Dive into Snapchat’s UI Design Strategies

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Snapchat has taken the world by storm with its unique and innovative user interface (UI) design. But what exactly lies beneath the surface of Snapchat’s UI? What secrets, techniques, and principles have contributed to its unprecedented success? In this article, we embark on a journey to unravel the mysteries of Snapchat’s UI, exploring the psychology, design philosophy, and technological innovations that have made it a cultural phenomenon.

Join us as we delve into the enigmatic world of Snapchat, peeling back the layers of its UI to uncover the secrets that have captivated an entire generation. From its intuitive navigation to its addictive features, we’ll examine how Snapchat has mastered the art of user experience, setting new standards for interaction design in the digital age.

Table of Contents

The evolution of Snapchat’s UI

From its humble beginnings as a photo-sharing app focused on ephemerality, Snapchat’s UI has undergone a dramatic transformation, mirroring the platform’s own journey and adapting to user needs and market trends. Let’s embark on a visual adventure through the key stages of this evolution:

Snapchat's UI

The OG Snap (2011-2013)

Minimalism reigned supreme. A single swipe right opened the camera, left opened chats, and down brought up stories. Bold yellow accents and a clear focus on capturing and sending snaps defined the early UI.

During this period, Snapchat experienced significant growth in its user base. Most of the users are early adopters, mainly teenagers, attracted by the privacy and spontaneity. User base grew steadily to 10 million by 2013.

Snapchat's UI

Storytelling Takes Center Stage (2013-2015)

The introduction of Stories in 2013 brought a dramatic shift. The UI evolved to accommodate this new, public form of sharing, placing stories front and center with a dedicated tab and circular profile pictures. Chat conversations received their own dedicated space. Exploded with Stories, Snapchat reached 100 million daily users by 2015. User base diversified beyond the early teen demographic.

Snapchat's UI

Rise of the Discoverables (2015-2018)

As Snapchat’s popularity soared, the UI branched out. Discover, a curated content portal featuring brands and publishers, joined the fray. Snaps now had to compete for attention with professionally produced content, prompting subtle UI changes to enhance discoverability.

Snapchat's UI

The Great Redesign (2018) :

 A controversial decision shook things up in 2018. The familiar swipe gestures were replaced with a tab-based navigation, separating friends from Discover, much to the dismay of some users. While intended to improve discoverability, it sparked outcry and forced Snapchat to iterate on the design. As a result, user growth slowed and existing users left.

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Refining the Experience (2019-present ):

 The focus shifted towards refining the experience based on user feedback. The camera screen received an overhaul, incorporating AR Lenses more seamlessly. Navigation became more intuitive, with the return of swipe gestures in some areas. Personalization features like Snap Map gained prominence, reflecting users’ desire for real-time connections.

In this period, Snapchat’s user growth stabilized and began to climb again. As of 2024, Snapchat has over 332 million monthly active users, but faces stiff competition from Instagram and TikTok.

Overview of Snapchat’s UI

A. home screen.

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The home screen is the heart of Snapchat’s UI design. It is where users start their Snapchat journey, capturing moments and sharing them with their friends. The camera functionality is at the core of the home screen, allowing users to take photos and record videos with various creative tools and filters. This interactive and intuitive camera experience sets Snapchat apart from other social media platforms.

The navigation buttons on the home screen enable users to access different sections of the app easily. These buttons, strategically placed at the bottom of the screen, provide quick and seamless navigation between the camera, chat, and discover pages. Snapchat’s minimalist approach to UI design ensures that users can effortlessly switch between features without any distractions.

B. Discover page

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The discover page is where users can explore a wide range of content from various publishers, influencers, and brands. Snapchat’s UI design makes content discovery a delightful experience. The discover page showcases a curated selection of personalized recommendations based on the user’s interests and preferences. This personalized approach to content discovery keeps users engaged and ensures they are always presented with content that resonates with them.

Chat and Stories

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1. Messaging features

Snapchat’s UI design for chat is all about simplicity and efficiency. The messaging features, including text, voice, and video chat, are seamlessly integrated into the app’s UI. Users can easily send messages, photos, and videos to their friends, creating a dynamic and interactive communication experience. Snapchat’s UI design allows for quick and intuitive messaging, making it a preferred choice for many users.

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2. Stories format

Snapchat revolutionized the way we share and consume stories with its unique stories format. The UI design for stories enables users to share their moments in a chronological narrative, creating a captivating storytelling experience. The stories format is not only visually appealing but also easy to navigate. Users can swipe through stories effortlessly, immersing themselves in a continuous stream of content from their friends and favorite accounts.

The Secrets Behind Snapchat’s UI Design:

Snapchat, the platform synonymous with disappearing messages and quirky filters, has captivated a generation with its unique UI design. But what lies beneath the playful surface? Let’s delve into the key principles that make Snapchat’s UI tick:

A. Simplicity and Minimalism:

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It has a clean and intuitive design. From the moment you open the app, you’re greeted by the camera, inviting immediate engagement. No clutter, no unnecessary elements – just a clean interface that prioritizes ease of use.

It also focuses on core features. Buttons are readily accessible, and core functionalities like capture, effects, and chat are front and center. This laser focus prevents overwhelming users and keeps them immersed in the core experience.

B. Visual Communication:

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Images and videos reign supreme in Snapchat’s world. The large camera viewfinder and intuitive capture gestures encourage spontaneous visual sharing.

It made use of icons and symbols. Complex features are conveyed through simple, universally understood icons. This reduces the learning curve and makes the app accessible to a wider audience.

C. Ephemeral Nature:

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In terms of disappearing messages and stories, the impermanence of content adds a layer of excitement and urgency. It encourages users to be present in the moment and share authentically, knowing their creations won’t linger forever.

It encourages in-the-moment sharing: The limited lifespan of snaps and stories fosters a sense of urgency and exclusivity, prompting users to capture and share experiences as they unfold.

D. User-Centric Design:

Snapchat prioritizes user experience. Snapchat actively gathers user feedback and iterates on its design based on real-world usage. This ensures the UI remains relevant and caters to evolving user needs.

New features and updates are rolled out frequently, keeping the app fresh and engaging. This responsiveness demonstrates Snapchat’s commitment to keeping users at the heart of the design process.

Unique Feature of Snapchat’s UI

While fleeting snaps and engaging stories might be the first things that come to mind when thinking about Snapchat, the app offers much more than just ephemeral content. Delving deeper reveals a treasure trove of features that set it apart from other social media platforms, particularly in the realms of Augmented Reality (AR) and location-based experiences.

Warping Reality with AR Lenses:

Snapchat’s AR Lenses aren’t just about funny faces and puppy dog filters. These interactive overlays go beyond mere visual amusement, creating unique and engaging experiences. Imagine trying on virtual makeup before buying it, exploring the night sky through your phone, or even bringing dinosaurs to life in your living room. These are just a few examples of how AR Lenses can transform everyday moments into something extraordinary.

And the innovation doesn’t stop there. Snapchat is constantly pushing the boundaries of AR technology, developing new and immersive experiences. From interactive games that respond to your movements to hyper-realistic filters that blur the line between reality and digital worlds, the platform keeps users engaged by offering something fresh and exciting every so often.

Connecting Through Location: The Snap Map Enigma

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In a world increasingly obsessed with online anonymity, Snapchat’s Snap Map stands out as a unique feature that embraces location sharing. It allows users to see where their friends are (with their permission, of course) on a real-time map, fostering a sense of connection and shared experiences. Planning a spontaneous hangout? Simply check the Snap Map to see if your friends are nearby.

However, Snapchat understands the importance of balancing privacy and social connectivity. Users have granular control over their location visibility, choosing who can see them and even creating “ghost mode” for complete invisibility. This balance makes the Snap Map a valuable tool for connecting with friends without compromising privacy concerns.

Beyond the Hype:

Snapchat’s unique features aren’t just gimmicks; they represent a genuine effort to push the boundaries of social media experiences. AR Lenses offer a glimpse into the future of interactive content, while the Snap Map fosters a sense of connection in a way that other platforms struggle to replicate. So, the next time you open Snapchat, remember that it’s more than just snaps and stories; it’s a portal to a world of creative expression, immersive experiences, and innovative ways to connect with the world around you.

Personalization and Algorithm

Snapchat doesn’t just offer unique ways to capture and share experiences; it also tailors your feed to keep you engaged with content that sparks your interest. This personalization engine, powered by intelligent algorithms, goes beyond the surface, suggesting not just Snaps and Stories, but also friends to connect with and creators to follow.

AI-Driven Content Curation:

Gone are the days of endlessly scrolling through a generic feed. Snapchat’s AI algorithms learn from your behavior, analyzing the Snaps and Stories you watch, engage with, and skip. This data becomes the secret sauce for curating a personalized feed that surfaces content you’ll actually enjoy. No more sifting through irrelevant posts; instead, you’ll discover hidden gems from friends and creators aligned with your interests, be it skateboarding fails, cooking tutorials, or hilarious animal videos.

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Beyond Snaps: Friend-Finding Frenzy:

Snapchat understands that connection is key. That’s why its algorithms don’t just suggest content; they actively help you expand your social circle. The “Quick Add” feature analyzes your contact list, mutual friends, and even location data to recommend potential friends you might share interests with. This eliminates the awkwardness of cold introductions, connecting you with people who are likely to become your next Snapchat besties.

Snapchat’s Contribution to Businesses

Snapchat offers several features that can help businesses connect with their audience, build brand awareness, and drive engagement. Here are some key features and examples of how businesses can utilize them:

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Snapchat Ads

Snapchat provides various advertising options, including Snap Ads, Sponsored Lenses, and Sponsored Geofilters. These ads can help businesses reach their target audience based on demographics, interests, and behavior.

For instance, a restaurant can create a Sponsored Geofilter targeting users who are near their location. When users take a snap in or around the restaurant, they can apply the filter, spreading brand awareness to their followers.

Snapchat Stories

Snapchat Stories allow businesses to create short, engaging content that appears in users’ feeds for 24 hours. This feature is excellent for showcasing behind-the-scenes content, product launches, or special promotions.

For example, a clothing brand can create a series of Snapchat Stories showcasing a fashion show or a sneak peek of upcoming collections, generating excitement among followers and driving them to visit the brand’s website or store.

Snapchat Discover

Discover features content from various publishers, brands, and influencers. Businesses can partner with Snapchat to create engaging content that appears in the Discover section, reaching a broader audience.

To illustrate,  a media company can collaborate with Snapchat to create exclusive content related to current events or trending topics. By appearing in the Discover section, the company can increase brand visibility and attract new followers.

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Snapchat Influencer Partnerships

Businesses can collaborate with influencers on Snapchat to reach their followers authentically and leverage their influence to promote products or services.

To give an example, A beauty brand can partner with a popular makeup artist on Snapchat to create tutorials or product reviews. The influencer’s authentic endorsement can drive followers to try out the brand’s products.

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Snapchat Analytics

Snapchat provides analytics tools for businesses to track the performance of their campaigns, including metrics such as views, engagement, and conversions. This data helps businesses optimize their strategies and achieve better results.

In this case, a retailer can use Snapchat Analytics to measure the effectiveness of their advertising campaigns by tracking metrics such as swipe-up rates and conversion rates. They can then adjust their targeting or messaging to improve performance.

Snapchat’s UI Challenges and Adaptations

Like any social media platform, Snapchat isn’t immune to challenges. It navigates a tricky landscape, balancing user privacy concerns with the need to stay relevant in a fiercely competitive market. But despite the rapids, Snapchat continues to adapt and evolve, demonstrating its resilience and commitment to its unique identity.

Privacy in the Spotlight:

User privacy has always been a hot topic for Snapchat. Controversies related to data breaches and employee access to user information have sparked user concerns and regulatory scrutiny. In response, Snapchat has implemented several measures to regain trust. They’ve enhanced data encryption, strengthened internal controls, and provided users with more granular controls over their privacy settings. Additionally, they’ve actively engaged with privacy advocates and regulators to demonstrate their commitment to responsible data handling.

Snapchat's UI

Beyond Snaps: Embracing Change:

The social media landscape is a dynamic one, and Snapchat has continuously adapted to stay relevant. As competitors introduced similar features like disappearing messages and stories, Snapchat didn’t panic. Instead, it doubled down on its strengths – AR Lenses and location-based experiences. Moreover, it embraced emerging trends like short-form video content with Spotlight and built unique features like Discover, catering to specific interests. This adaptability ensures Snapchat remains a platform not just for fleeting messages, but for diverse and engaging content creation.

Snapchat continues to address these challenges and actively seeks user feedback to improve its UI design.

Conclusion: The future of Snapchat’s UI design

Snapchat’s UI design has evolved significantly since its inception, and it will continue to evolve as technology and user preferences change. The app’s commitment to simplicity, interactivity, and visual communication sets it apart from its competitors and ensures a unique and engaging user experience. As Snapchat continues to innovate and push the boundaries of UI design , we can expect even more exciting and user-centric features in the future.

In conclusion, Snapchat’s UI design is a testament to the power of innovative and user-centered design strategies. The app’s intuitive navigation, visually appealing interface, and emphasis on simplicity and interactivity have made it a favorite among millions of users worldwide. As Snapchat continues to refine and enhance its UI design, we can only imagine what magical experiences lie ahead for its users.

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Integrating augmented reality to elevate social commerce

Snapchat offers shopping lenses with augmented reality try-on technology, which allows users to visualize different apparel, accessories, makeup, and more using their device’s camera.

We partnered with Snapchat to create the interfaces for the lenses and provided concepts for animation tutorials, supporting various SKUs of products across top brand names. The result is a design that embodies the immediacy and desired engagement of the Snapchat platform.

  • UI/UX Design
  • Interaction Design
  • Illustration
  • Video Production

Immersive Social Commerce

Experience the future of shopping with our innovative design, integrating AR technology for a seamless discovery of new products. Our interface offers voice and gesture control, eliminating the hassles of traditional shopping by enabling smart adjustments to size and color. A new era of dynamic retail has arrived.

To execute our vision, we examined all of the existing types of lenses and leveraged all interactive methods within Snapchat's design system. Tailoring the experience to different user categories, our team developed a fresh design language for the tutorials and product pages.

Lens Tutorial

We had to ensure that users could easily try on and purchase the product — even if they’re brand-new to the app. We also worked diligently to make the tutorial animations consistent across all devices and accessible to all user types.

Snapchat AR interface for trying on Apple Watch

An equally important aspect was the highly-detailed presentation of various products. Users not only have to be able to try on, but also touch and even rotate the product.

Animation & 3D Modeling

We created a universal style of tutorials using 3D modeling and animations. Our goal was to create an immersive and engaging experience that would allow users to explore the full potential of the lens.

To maintain connection to the actual physical product, we created a signature illustration language with 3D modeling to add tactility, volume, and a desire to touch the objects.

Maximizing User Autonomy

When trying on full-body apparel, voice command is simply more practical than tapping. To make this process more user-friendly, we conducted extensive research and experimented with different voice commands to create simple commands.

Standardizing the Product UX

We explored six different use cases that could apply to a wide range of products. After several tests, we developed a consistent solution that exemplifies Snapchat’s tone of voice.

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Joe & The Juice

snapchat ux case study

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  • Health Technology


- 3 mins read

Snapchat, a multimedia messaging application, quickly became popular due to its USP – AR powered camera filters that weren’t being offered by any other app at the time. Young adults in the age group of 13 to 21, increasing started using Snapchat as their exclusive messaging app.

snapchat ux case study

However, a recent redesign proved to be extremely unsuccessful. The redesign altered the design, which changed the UX of the entire application. Users were extremely irritated by this change in the UX and even expressed their frustration online. Over 1.2 million users signed a petition on, an online platform to garner support, asking to rollback the design changes and go back to the old design. 

The primary complaint highlighted in the petition was that the new update was extremely confusing for users. It also stated that the redesign made many features difficult to use, and that a lot of the new features were useless. May users were so annoyed that they stated that they would be leaving the platform for good and used their social media platform to express their frustration. 

Kylie Jenner, a mega celebrity with over 24 million followers, too shared her disappointment over the User Experience update on Twitter. This resulted in a loss of over 1.3 billion dollars off Snapchat’s share price, as all her followers agreed with her. 

So what went so horribly wrong? Why did Snapchat lose out on its most loyal followers? Let’s understand the new features that Snapchat introduced in its redesign and why it wasn’t received well by users of the application.

The Redesign

Snapchat wanted desperately to carve a niche space for itself and differentiate itself from other social media giants like Facebook and Instagram. When Facebook also implemented the idea of “Stories” and extended it to Instagram, an idea that initially belonged only to Snapchat, the app was left with no choice but to attempt a full fledged redesign. 

snapchat ux case study

Their idea was to separate the “social” aspect from the “media”. This seemed like a novel idea at the time, however it created a lot of confusion amongst users, because they did not know where to go in terms of navigation. They were unable to find their friend’s stories, because these were embedded within the social tab itself. The social tab was previously a log of sent and received Snaps in the original version. In later versions, they combined user’s friends stories with those of celebrities, ad plugins and content pieces under the “Discover” button. This created a major disconnect, as users did not want to see their friends stories along with stories by celebrities or paid content. 

A lesson we can takeaway from Snapchat’s redesign is that more features is not necessarily a good thing. Sometimes more features can result in a lot more confusion for users. Something Snapchat could’ve done instead was treat Stories as a separate feature rather than combining it with other features, since Stories was the reason why Snapchat had such a large user base in the first place. Due to the disappointing redesign, a lot of users moved to Instagram and Facebook that have a dedicated Story feature. It is no surprise that the Stories feature on these platforms is being used way more widely than Snapchat.

Here are some other features that were introduced as a part of the redesign;

  • Stories and incoming chats on the same page

The redesign compressed Stories and Incoming chats on a single page called FRIENDS. New incoming snapchats are placed on top, but the stories and conversations look almost similar and are no longer in serial order. It uses a predetermined algorithm to show Stories from friends that the app decide would be most meaningful and important to you or the ones it thinks you care most about.

2. Sending a message is extremely complicated

The new layout as part of the updated UX is extremely clumsy and confusing, which makes it extremely difficult for users to find their friends and connect with them by sending them a direct message. Earlier it was a lot easier to have a simple list of friends and send them a message.

3. Cannot replay stories

In the new redesign, stories vanish after watching them once. It is difficult for users to rewatch stories. To find them again, users need to swipe up and search for a specific friends name to rewatch their stories again. Previously the story was available on the Stories page until it’s expiry. The new redesign made the process of rewatching someone’s story unnecessarily complicated.

4. Discover page replaced with featured and sponsored content

Earlier users could easily swipe left to find Stories. However the entire page was now dedicated to features celebrity stories and sponsored content. This was done to make Snapchat a more advertiser – friendly application and generate a lot more revenue for the app. However this did not pan out the way it was intended and in fact had an opposite effect. Users started ignoring this entire page altogether since it was only filled with advertisements.

Takeaways from the Snapchat Redesign

snapchat ux case study

The major reason for the failure of Snapchat’s design was that the application did not take into account their users needs. In an attempt to be more advertiser friendly, they failed to implement features that would actually be useful for their users. Thus the newly increased features were not appealing to users at all. The company failed to find the right balance between their user and business goal, adversely affecting their brand image and losing a majority of their users in the process.

Secondly, before implementing such a major change, Snapchat should have beta tested the features. This would have helped them understand what works and what doesn’t so that they could make improvements and then gradually implemented the revamped features. Instead they just took their users by surprise thus garnering such adverse reactions and backlash that had such a major affect on its brand image.

In conclusion, any app needs to gradually introduce new features and not implement such major changes without due thought and gathering insights.

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Social & Psychological Effects of Communication Technology

Comm 385 spring 2019, snapchat: uses, usability, and user experience -midterm project.


Ephemeral social media or social media content that lasts for a very short time, has become a prominent part of the social media ecosystem. Snapchat, one of the most popular social media apps, was created with the sole purpose of providing this short, temporary content. When Snapchat was initially released it focused on person- to-person photo sharing, but has released various updates over the years and now features various lenses or filters for taking photos, it can be used to live chat with people, or a group, to send video messages, to share “stories” that are broadcasted to your followers and last 24 hours, you can create Bitmoji avatars, and now has a “Discovery” section where you can read news articles from popular news sources and publishers. More recently snapchat has also created a “snap-map” where you can see your followers’ avatars’ live locations on a real-world map, if they choose to be seen. There are other features that keep users coming back such as a “snap-streak” which keeps track of the people that you Snapchat every day, and it also uses emojis to indicate whether someone is your “bff” or in your top “bffs”.

From a user perspective, Snapchat is an easy and fun way to update your friends on what you are up to and to also see what they are up to. It is instant communication through your mobile phone that seemingly more closely replicates real life face-to-face interactions with its ephemeral quality. According to the Business of Apps, 186 million people are using snapchat daily, there is a 94% penetration rate among 18-24-year-old age group, and 77% of college students use snapchat. With statistics like these, it is important to understanding why people are using snapchat, their satisfaction with the app, and their overall attitudes towards the app and its function.

Design and Method

To conduct my research, a user-centered design was utilized because it a requires deeper analysis of my target audience which was Lehigh students who use Snapchat. I wanted to test the particular habits and preferences of target users to come up answers to my specific questions.

The method I chose to use to conduct this usability test was a questionnaire. With so many people, specifically college-age students using Snapchat, I wanted to find out some specifics of their usage and ask some questions to get some statistics about their feeling towards their usability. Using a questionnaire I was able to get the most amount of answers possible. I combined some personal questions I felt were relevant for my research along with Arnold Lund’s set of questions for measuring usability. I asked questions regarding, usefulness, ease of use, ease of learning, satisfaction, and some questions that might lead to social psychological, cognitive, behavioral factors or conclusions. Most of my questions were in the format of statements and participants were asked to choose true or false. For example, “I find Snapchat easy to use.”, and “Snapchat makes me feel more connected to my friends”, would be statements seen on the questionnaire. The full questionnaire can be found in the appendix.

Key Results

At the end of my allotted research period, 37 college age Snapchat users had responded to the questionnaire. Regarding technical usability, it was found that the vast majority of people who answered the survey found snapchat to be very easy to use and user friendly. When asked if snapchat was easy to use 100% of participants said yes, 97% of participants said it was user friendly, and 97% said they learned how to use it quickly and easily. We can conclude from that that Snapchat was well designed in terms of ease of use and the audience that I targeted doesn’t struggle with using it.

The questions I asked about usefulness were slightly more difficult to discern. First, interestingly, I when asked if Snapchat was their most used app 43% of respondents answered that yes it was. Even though this was the case, 51% of respondents said Snapchat did not make them more effective at communicating, and 68% said it did not save them time or make them more productive when communicating with friends. However, 97% did say they felt it kept them more connected to friends. This leads me to believe that efficiency and productivity were not a huge concern when communicating through Snapchat. When asked what they use Snapchat to do 73% of respondents said they split their time both sharing content and seeing what others are doing, 16% said they use it to view other peoples’ content, 8% said they use it share their own, and only 2.7% used it for the Discovery/news section. Similarly, when asked if people liked having their friends see what they are doing at all times, 78% said they did NOT like the constant personal sharing, while 68% said they DID however like seeing what their friends were doing at all times. These results lead to a conclusion that users typically like to spend their time on Snapchat looking at other people’s lives and feel more comfortable doing so.

Further social psychological implications could be related to the fact that 95% of respondents said Snapchat made them use their phones more, 43% felt that snapchat made them feel isolated from the real world and 53% agreed that snapchat made them feel lonely at times. Social psychological conclusions could be that constantly looking at what others are doing instead of doing things yourself in turn is making users feel isolated and alone. On the other hand, interestingly, 67% of respondents thought it was possible to foster strong personal connections through Snapchat which seems to contradict the idea that Snapchat is isolating.

Finally, I asked some questions regarding overall satisfaction with the app and asked for any suggestions or improvements. 97% said that snapchat was fun to use and 94% said they were overall satisfied. The 6% that weren’t satisfied were asked to leave any comments as to why they were unsatisfied. One responder said that they felt that people “idealized” themselves on the app using filters, and only showed themselves living their “best lives” which led to negative self-image for people viewing stories. Similarly, another responder commented that “Snapchat was fake” and they did not like “that people post stories to make their lives seem more interesting.” Instead, they continue, “if someone has the time to take a video, you must not be enjoying the moment that much.” It is interesting to think about the paradox between this false sense of reality and wanting to portray your best self but also factoring in the fact that the majority if people believed you could foster real meaningful relationships through Snapchat.

Potential Improvements

In terms of improvements for the app, the suggestions I received from my questionnaire and that I thought that could be best implemented were to limit peoples stories to a number of times per day, to fix the friend algorithm, and finally to leverage their younger audience and more strongly advertise and personalize their Discovery section so that people can use the app to read about current events and move away from feelings of isolation. Limiting the number of Snap stories that people can make would force people to spend less time on their phones and also limit people’s focus on showing others what they are doing instead of living in the moment. This could be easily implemented with a message that alerts you when you have reached the story limit. Additionally, a few people had complaints about the friend algorithm and thought that it seemed more random opposed to people who you are actually friends with. I think this could be improved by creating an algorithm that generated your best friends by factoring in who you are in contact with the most and who you enter in as your best friends. Finally I think that when users download the app they should be asked what news they are interested in or their favorite publications and then the news from there on out is tailored to their interests and not just whatever is the most popular.

In conclusion Snapchat is a well -designed and functional app that has allowed for quick

spontaneous communication between people. People are using it to both share their own and see other people’s lives. The genuineness of the communication is up to users but seems fairly limited and more about frequency, or quantity not quality of contact. By analyzing the questionnaire and garnering some insights I think Snapchat could be improved, but overall it is a well-liked and successful app and does what it was created to do; connect people.

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*Title image modified from Gerd Leonhard's image under Creative Commons license .

How to Write a UX Case Study in 10 Steps

How to Write a UX Case Study in 10 Steps

Alesya Denga

When you're starting out as a UX designer, you know that you need case studies for your portfolio. However, there's not a lot of concrete information out there on exactly what should be in a case study. People have different expectations for UX case studies, so in this article, we'll guide you through 10 steps to build a solid UX/UI case study.

If you really want to showcase your work effectively, approach your case study with the same diligence you would apply to a design project. Don’t just throw something together quickly because you need to fill your portfolio. You’ll miss a valuable opportunity to stand out. Think of creating a case study as a project in itself:

  • Begin with research and inspiration : Look at other successful projects and case studies.
  • Choose the content to highlight : Focus on the most impactful aspects of your work.
  • Sketch layouts or structures : Plan how you’ll present your information visually.
  • Develop a wireframe : Create a rough layout for your case study.
  • Refine the design and visual presentation : Ensure your case study is visually appealing and consistent.
  • Plan your release : Think about when and where you’ll publish your case study; consider a small social media campaign.
  • Extend your reach : Write additional blog posts, articles, or use other project elements to generate interest.
🧠 Uxcel top tip: A compelling title is crucial for drawing readers in. Avoid generic titles like "Landing Page Case Study." Instead, be creative and engaging. For example, "From Clicks to Conversions: Enhancing Our Landing Page UX" is more likely to capture attention.

What is a Case Study?

Use Case Study Cover Image

A case study in UI/UX is a comprehensive narrative of a design project. It details the designer's approach to solving a user interface or user experience problem, including the project’s background, the problem addressed, the designer's role, and the steps taken. This format can significantly boost your chances of getting hired.

Purpose of a Case Study

The purpose of a case study is to:

  • Communicate design thinking : Recruiters seek candidates who can explain their designs clearly and appealingly.
  • Showcase skills and process : Highlight your abilities, thought processes, choices, and actions in context through engaging, image-supported stories.
  • Engage recruiters quickly : Enhance your portfolio with 2–3 case studies featuring your best writing and captivating visuals to capture recruiters’ interest within 5 minutes.

10 Steps to Create a UX/UI Case Study

Step 1. introduction.

Your introduction sets the stage for your case study, providing readers with a clear understanding of the project's background and your involvement. Here’s how to craft a compelling introduction:

Explain the project

  • Overview : Start with a brief description of the project. What is it about? Is it a mobile app, a website redesign, or a new feature?
  • Your role: Clearly define your role in the project. Were you the lead designer, a team member, or focused on a specific area like user research or visual design? If you collaborated with teammates, be sure to acknowledge their contributions.
  • The scenario : Provide some context for the project. Why was it initiated? What were the business goals or user needs that drove the project?

Set the context

  • Project background : Give a brief background of the project. Mention any relevant details such as the industry, target audience, and the problem that needed solving.
  • What you’ll cover : Outline what your case study will discuss. This gives readers a roadmap of what to expect.

Step 2. Define the objectives

Defining the objectives of your project is crucial for setting the direction and scope of your work. This step involves clearly outlining what you aim to achieve and how you plan to get there.

  • Clearly state objectives : Articulate the specific goals you aimed to achieve with the project. This helps readers understand your focus and the criteria for success. For example, the main objective could be to improve user satisfaction scores related to the checkout process and decrease the overall time taken to complete a purchase by 30%.
  • Define success metrics : Mention the key performance indicators (KPIs) or metrics you will use to measure the success of your project. This adds a quantitative aspect to your objectives. In the realm of the checkout scenario, the metrics could be checkout completion rate, user satisfaction scores from post-purchase surveys, and the average time to complete a transaction.

Step 3. Research goals and methods

Empathy map with 4 sections: Says, Thinks, Does, and Feels

Research is a critical component of any UX/UI project. It provides the foundation for understanding user needs, identifying pain points, and informing design decisions. This step involves setting clear research goals, using appropriate methods, and sharing valuable insights.

  • Understand user needs : Define what you aim to learn about your users, including their behaviors, preferences, motivations, and pain points.
  • Identify pain points : Specify the problems you need to uncover, focusing on areas where users struggle or express frustration.
  • Gather feedback : Describe how you will collect feedback from users about existing or proposed designs.
  • Explain research methods : Use methods such as one-on-one interviews, surveys, competitive analysis, and analytics review. Explain how these methods will help you achieve your goals.
  • Detail your findings : Summarize the most important insights gained from your research, which should directly inform your design decisions.
🧠 Uxcel top tip: Share snippets of interviews or research deliverables to add visual interest to your process. However, don’t overdo it—no one wants to read four pages of interview transcripts.

Step 4. Define the problem

Defining the problem is crucial, as some designs may look great but solve non-existent issues or overlook more important ones.

  • Clearly state the issue : Ensure readers understand the specific problem by describing it in precise terms. A well-defined problem should be specific and measurable, such as "users struggle to find their account settings" instead of a vague statement like "the app is confusing."
  • Provide context : Offer detailed information about the problem uncovered during research. Specify the conditions under which the problem occurs, the affected user segments, and any relevant data.

Step 5. Define the audience

The user persona containing a quote, demographics, bio, and traits

Defining your audience is essential for creating a product that meets user needs effectively.

  • Identify target users : Clearly understand who will use or is already using the app or product. Determine the demographics, behaviors, and needs of your primary users.
  • Create personas : Develop detailed personas to represent your target audience. These should include information such as age, occupation, goals, challenges, and preferences to help guide your design decisions.
Explore how to create personas in the Personas in UX Research lesson, which is part of the UX Research course.

Step 6. Brainstorming

Brainstorming is a crucial step where creativity and collaboration come into play. It’s about generating a wide range of ideas and narrowing them down to the most viable solutions.

  • Use ideation techniques : Describe the ideation techniques you and/or your team used if any, such as brainwriting, SCAMPER, Crazy 8s, mind mapping, affinity diagrams, and sketching. Explain how these techniques helped in exploring different aspects of the problem and generating innovative solutions.
  • Generate and share ideas : Present the initial ideas that emerged during brainstorming sessions. This can include rough sketches, mind maps, or notes from whiteboard sessions. Highlight the diversity of ideas and the collaborative effort.
Explore efficient ideation techniques in the Ideation Techniques & Challenges lesson, which is part of the Design Thinking course.

Step 7. Share your process

Customer journey map with phases Discovery, Registration, Setting a habit, and Completing tasks

Sharing your process is vital for demonstrating how you approached the project and the reasoning behind your decisions. Include user flows, information architecture, and initial wireframes to show the evolution of your design. Along the way, briefly explain why you made certain design choices and how they address the problem or enhance the user experience.

🧠 Uxcel top tip : Don't expect people to read everything. Find the balance between showing your design work and articulating your decisions. If you need to describe some of the decisions you made or explain the process in more detail, try writing on Medium or your personal/company blog and then link it to your case study.

Step 8. Provide your solution

screens of a habit building app

This step is where you showcase the final solution to the problem you’ve been addressing. It's your opportunity to present your design work and explain how it effectively resolves the identified issues.

  • Present designs or interactive prototypes : Demonstrate how users interact with your design. You can even record videos to show key interactions and transitions.
  • Color palette : Share your thoughts on how the selected color palette supports the overall design and brand identity. Provide color swatches and examples of how colors are applied in the interface.
  • Typography : Describe the typography used in your design and its impact on readability and aesthetics. Include examples of headers, body text, and other typographic elements.

Include any additional design assets or elements that contribute to the final solution, such as icons, imagery, and illustrations.

Step 9. Testing and iteration

If you conducted testing and iterations after the launch, this is the step to discuss it. Sharing these insights shows how you refined your designs to create a better user experience.

  • Share testing insights : briefly mention the reasons for testing, the methods used, and the findings.
  • Detail improvements : Describe the specific changes made based on the testing feedback. Highlight how these iterations improved the user experience and addressed any identified issues.

Step 10. Conclusion and final thoughts

This final step should be concise but informative. Reflect on the process and share your final thoughts and any lessons learned throughout the project. If possible, include specific metrics or feedback to demonstrate the impact of your work.

Explore our design brief to test your skills by creating a UX/UI case study for a landing page that embraces diversity and inclusivity principles.

Tips for a Successful Case Study

  • Permission : Get your employer’s or client’s permission before selecting a project for a case study, especially if you've signed a non-disclosure agreement (NDA).
  • Consistency : Use cohesive color palettes from tools like Coolors or Adobe Color to ensure a clean and consistent presentation.
  • Brand personality : If relevant, discuss the brand personality and design principles in your case study.
🧠 Uxcel top tip: Set an eye-catching cover image. If you don't have many followers yet, attracting attention can be challenging. We recommend giving special attention to the cover image of your case study—something that stands out and grabs people's attention as they scroll through their feed. Ask yourself: "What will make my project noticeable at first glance?"

Writing a UX case study is crucial for your career, especially when you're just starting out. A well-crafted case study not only showcases your skills but also demonstrates your ability to think critically and solve problems effectively. By including every necessary step—from initial research to final design—you can present a comprehensive and compelling narrative that highlights both your qualitative and quantitative research. This thorough approach will captivate your audience, impress potential employers, and significantly increase your chances of landing your dream job.

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Top 7 resources for ux/ui designers for meaningful design inspiration, the impact of ux design on application success: exploring costs and trends, 11 inspiring ux case studies that every designer should study, cookie settings 🍪.

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Case Study: Travel Tracker Service Website

tubik UX

Let's check one of our recent projects with the vibes of traveling and tourism. In it, we designed the website strengthening digital marketing and online presence for Flamingo, the overseas and stateside travel tracker application. Limited color palette, elegant typography, friendly and emotional photo content, and catchy graphics make the web design both informative and user-friendly.

If you want to collaborate, contact us via [email protected]

snapchat ux case study

Also, welcome to check:

•  the massive and growing collection of tubik design case studies

•  the diverse collection of practical design articles in tubik blog

•  the overview of the anatomy of a web page

•  the essential features of business website design

•  the tips on how to apply web animation

[email protected]

snapchat ux case study

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