Happify App Usability Testing

C o n t e x t

A quick overview

Happify is a free app offering a wide variety of games, activities, and content meant to serve as a tool to help improve the user’s mental health and wellness. The goal of this project was to complete a usability test in order to evaluate the functionality of the app and better understand how to make effective recommendations on how to improve it.

Completed for
DePaul University: Usability Evaluation Methods class

Myself and two classmates

Tools used
Heuristic evaluation
Cognitive walkthrough
Moderated remote usability assessment test

P r o c e s s

Understanding the app

The Happify app encourages users to engage with the available tracks, each one consisting of different combinations of games and activities focused on helping users work through a specific stressor or issue. The app also provides a community space, where users can communicate with others through forums, posts, etc. as well as a page featuring videos and articles on a wide range of topics.

Prior to conducting our usability tests, each team member completed a cognitive walkthrough and heuristic evaluation. This allowed each of us to gain more familiarity with the interface and identify a few key areas we could focus on for our usability test.

Forming the test

Test ObjectivesTasks
Are users able to easily get started by creating an account?1. Start with the app open and create an account.
Are users able to easily find a track that resonates with them and start working on it?2. Find a free track that interests you to begin working on.
3. Complete the first activity in the track.
Are users able to easily create, edit, or delete posts and comments on their timeline and community feed?4. Post the activity in the community section. 
5. Go back and edit the text in the post.
Do users know where to find the articles/video entries within the Happify Daily section in order to engage with the content?6. Find content to view in the Happify Daily section and find the button to share it with a friend on Facebook.

The testing process

Since we were unable to meet participants in person due to the pandemic, our team conducted a moderated remote test over Zoom and also asked participants to record their phone’s screen. Several pre-screening questions were asked in order to ensure that the participant closely aligned with our user profile. We then provided a brief description of what our test would consist of, as well as our plan to record a video of the user and their screen, in order to confirm we had their consent. In total, we conducted the test on five participants.

To begin the test, we read from our script in order to provide a more in-depth overview of what the participant could expect. After our introduction, we provided detailed instructions to help the user download the Happify app and listed out the tasks assigned to them to complete. There were a total of six tasks which needed to be completed in approximately 15 minutes. During the test, participants were asked to think aloud as they completed each task and the moderator made notes of any observations they had.

We concluded the test by giving the participants an opportunity to provide any additional feedback that was not given while they were completing the tasks. We also asked them to provide ratings using a Likert scale in order to gauge the participant’s satisfaction with the app and how easy they felt it was to use.

Analyzing the data

Once testing was completed, the raw data was gathered and organized in one document to more easily evaluate where patterns or themes emerged. Recordings from each session were also included in the document in case a test moderator was required to revisit a test for any reason.

C o n c l u s i o n

Our findings

Based on our testing, we found that users had little to no trouble during the account creation or track selection process. All users were able to successfully finish these tasks and rated them as “easy to complete.” However, we found most participants struggled with creating new posts and/or editing them after they were published in the app’s community section. Not only did 3 out of 5 participants abandon the task, these two tasks elicited the most negative comments from all participants. Consequently, we developed a couple of recommendations as shown below.

Our recommendations

The test objective where we found most of our participants struggled with most:
Are users able to easily create, edit, or delete posts and comments on their timeline and community feed?

The two tasks associated with this test objective are:

  • Post the activity in the community section
  • Go back and edit the text in the post

Below are a couple of my recommendations to help make each task easier.

Post the activity in the community section.

3 out of 5 participants were able to successfully complete this task, but 3 participants (including one who was able to complete it) expressed confusion during the process.

Severity rating: high
Allow users to create a post at any time, rather than limiting it only to once certain activities are complete. Make it clear to the user that they are creating a post by changing the language in the CTA from “Happify It” to something like “Create Post”.

Severity rating: high
Participants were confused by the pencil icon as they thought it would allow them to create a new post. Change this pencil icon to a message icon or something similar, so users know this is where they can view existing posts.

Go back and edit the text in the post.

Of the 3 participants who were able to create a post in the community feed, only 2 were able to successfully go back to edit the text in their post.

Severity rating: high
In order to edit the post, the user must click on the small button with the three dots on the bottom right corner. To make it more obvious this is where users can go to edit the post, we recommend changing it from the three dots to text that says “edit” or something equally clear.