01. Product Brief


Service & Target Users
  • Service: Birch is a mobile App offering used furniture rental service.

  • Target Users: It targets college students who move frequently and have a temporary need for easy access to affordable, trustworthy, and efficient furniture service.

  • Unique: Unlike competing platforms such as Craigslist and Facebook Marketing, which offer C to C service, Birch corporates with professional furniture designers, in order to provide trustworthy and high-quality furniture to customers (B to C service).

  • Main features: AR Measurement, Entertainment Furniture, and Furniture Recycle.

Mission & Brand Value
  • Metaphor: Birch trees symbolize beginnings and rebirth. Like a birch tree, our furniture is given a new life every time it travels to a new home. With our sustainable mission, we made reusable, clean and modern furniture environmentally-friendly.


  • Secondary research & Primary research: Online questionnaire & User Interviews

  • Ecosystem mapping - Synthesis - User Experience mapping (Current status)

  • Storyboarding - Concept Ideation

  • User workflow

  • App UI design - User testing

  • Branding -  Business Model

  • Product video Introduction


Amber Reed

Iran Narges


Key Roles  

Design research
User workflow

App UI Design
Video production


Group Project

Bill Chien

Rita Lei

Lois Kang

Lori Chinn



2017 Dec



3 months



Adobe Xd



After Effect

02. Quantitative Research

to learn about the problem space

Firstly, in the brainstorming stage, we started with a broad concept "life service," and then broke it down into specific elements to explore potential problem space.

After that, we grouped those elements into 3 categories: housing, traveling, and dining.

Then we used a design technique called "Ecosystem Map" to visualize and analyze data. 

In order to figure out which categories have the most potentiality to design and what kind of service our target users desire most, we used a research technique, the online questionnaire, to gather quantitative user data for the definition of core needs.

Based on the analysis of the data-visualization from the primary research, we learned that:

there is definitely a strong desire in the domains of housing, moving, and food delivery, which confirmed our hypothesis. 


While considering the business model, from the marketing perspective, since there are multiple competitors who have already occupied the majority of food delivery market, it is not easy for new products to jump into the "red sea". Let alone making profits.


Therefore, we chose the domain of "housing", where the “blue sea” market has the most potentiality for further design with fewer direct competitors. In order to stand out in the housing market, we chose "Rental Service" as our unique feature to attract target users with a more economical price.​

03. Qualitative Research

to deeply understand target users' pain-points and needs

in key moments/stages 

Among our target users scope, we conduct 5 qualitative interviews with CCA students. 

In order to analyze users’ needs in different stages during the process of renting or purchasing furniture,

we used UX design techniques called "Synthesis Map" and "User Journey Map"

to display what users do, think, and feel in the 4 main steps: considering, buying, using and discarding

03. Primary Research

to learn about the target users' needs and pain-points

Quotes from our target users:

  •  " You never know the furniture and the seller (online furniture rental service)." - Agni   

  • "Apartment wanted a ping pong table, but not a necessity, so didn't get one because it was expensive to buy one." - Josh

  • "I move every year." - Eing

  • "I like to buy cheaper furniture now because I only use it for a short time period." - Ella

  • " When I purchase used furniture, I consider price and the use of it." - Saber    

04. Key Insights & Opportunities

User Journey Map creates more empathy for designers to consider the process from the users' perspective.


These are the key insights potential opportunities we learned from interviews:

  • Desire: easy access to affordable used furniture

  • Concerns: price, use of time, quality, health, the reputation of the sellers

  • Unique use scenario: entertainment furniture (expensive, large, infrequent) 

There is an opportunity to design an affordable, trustworthy, and efficient furniture rental service,

for college students who live in cities temporarily.

05. Competitor Analysis

to analyze their Information Architecture and UI

06. Ideation

to brainstorming for App functions 

Involving the 3 values of our brand

which are trustworthy, affordable, and efficient,

we brainstormed the functions for our App.

After two rounds of voting, 

4 main features stood out:

AR measurement

Furniture recycle

Monthly subscription 

Entertainment furniture

07. Persona

to use patterns from interviewees with empathy 

By combining the demographic information, main pain-points, and core needs of the 5 interviewees together,

we created our Persona, Alex, to involve empathy for further UX Design.

08. Storyboard

to position Persona into specific context during time

09. User Workflow

We simplified the process and focused on the main features and key moments.

10. High-fidelity App Interface

11. Branding

Cooperate with schools to create trust and value

Multiple social media to 

keep our community closer

Fast delivery

Professional workers

12. Service Blueprint

Finally, in order to summarize the different roles of frontstage and backstage,

we used a UX design technique called "Service Blueprint" to better understand:

customers actions, stuff actions, and support systems across different channels during the whole process.

© 2020 Rita Lei 

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Rita Lei

UX  &  UI