OkCupid users are moving toward apps like Tinder and Hinge because they feel like they are wasting their time by building online relationships. They would rather just meet quickly.

We designed a lightweight companion app to OkCupid called Q by OkCupid. The app included OkCupid users’ favorite feature: the ability to filter through their matches and the ability to like someone (or not) at a swipe.


Project Plan
Competitor Analysis & Flows
User Survery & Interview Questions
User Scenarios and Personas
Clickable Prototype
Usability Test Insights
Research Report


In a team of two we worked very collaboratively, creating many of the components together, including: feature ideation and conceptualisation, wireframes, competitive research, user interviews, usability tests, protyping and deliverables, iterating and refining as we went.

From 53 respondants to our screener survey, we interviewed 11 people.

I like to get a sense of who someone is before meeting them.

Major take-aways from Interviews:

• Users described OkCupid as serious, older and less fun than its competitors.
• Most users preferred the speed of online-dating on mobile rather than using their desktops.
• Users did not like putting in much work before meeting someone, most wanted to meet-up quickly.
They didn’t want to waste time.
• Users who loved OkCupid specifically were fond of its filters and the ability to refine their searches to find a better suited match.
• Whether users were using OkCupid or a competitor’s mobile app, they all wanted to find a relationship.

competitor research & FLOWS

OkCupid has one of the longest user flows for contacting a match amongst its competitors with a 24-step process.
Most of its competitors have about half of the steps to meet a match.

JSwipe target market is Jewish individuals and those who want to date them. It does refine matches, but it isn’t as in-depth as OkCupid.

Tinder is a mobile-only application which matches users based on proximity, mutual interests and friends. Unlike OkCupid, this app does not require an in-depth profile and users connect through instant messaging.



From our interviews, we distilled user interviews into an affinity map to reinforce our personas and to better understand the high level points we needed to focus on when prioritising features.

We concluded the following:

1. This “lightweight” version of OkCupid would function best as its own stand-alone mobile app, working as a companion app that will function with or without a user’s OkCupid profile.
2. The companion app should include OkCupid loyals’ favorite aspect of the product: the ability to filter through their matches.
3. The on-boarding should be quick and easy, and the app should be fun. Those we interviewed were put-off
by the serious and older nature of the current OkCupid app.
4. The communication throughout the app should feel like an instant message rather than lengthy
email communication.

Persona distillation

The distilled research from our follow-up interviews informed our three very clear personas and was the basis for the features of the app.


Ethan - Ok Cupid Loyal
Doesn’t mind putting in little effort, uses OkCupid because he feels like there are better quality people to date.

Charlotte - Fun & Carefree
Uses more than one app to date, likes initial dates to be light but is still hoping to find a meaningful relationship.

James - Tinder Busy Bee
Previously an OkCupid user, but has strayed because he wants the process of finding dates to be quick, easy, honest and straight-forward.


In our first design studio, we sketched out an app that featured full-bleed images and focused on two main pages: a matches page and an editable personal profile page.

After our first round of testing, we realised we needed to simplify the visual design to improve user experience and highlight the features of the app.


A. User tests showed that these icons were confusing and unclear.
B. Users clearly understood that this button would allow them to refine their search.
C. The grayed out image was confusing to all users. Most users wanted new users to come from the bottom rather than the top - the scroll was counter-intuitive.
D. The like/dislike buttons were lost in the image and most users couldn’t find them.
E. The tip in the footer was helpful to most users, they knew what to do on the match page.
F. This icon directs the user to the messages inbox. All users tested understood this.
G. Q logo directs the user to Matches page from all screens.
H. This icon directs the user to their personal profile.
I. Filters animate and slide in from right side of the user’s screen.
J. All users were able to locate the like/dislike buttons now as more white space was incorporated into the design
so that the interface was much easier to navigate.
K. Tips at the footer provide both dating tips and app tips.


Not spending enough time in the sketching phase can be counter-intuitive (we found this out the hard way). We went back to the drawing-board on some pages as what seemed easy to understand to us, was not easy to understand to our users. By thoroughly working through those pages in the sketching phase we were able to come up with a much better product.


  • Adding more behavioural filters to refine by: user tests showed that a Drinker/social drinker filter would be desirable.
  • Allow a user to simultaneously create an OkCupid profile when on boarding on Q.
  • Create a Q app for android, since 24% of survey respondents were on that platform.
  • Creating a desktop version of Q.
  • More testing, more iteration… repeat.