"How might we improve the pet-sitting experience?"
I designed a community based pet-care app that allows users to book services and interact with other pet lovers.
Sole UI/UX Designer
Finding a pet-sitter can be hard.
Pet owners often face many hurdles when looking for someone to take care of their pet while they are traveling.
Their options are - asking friends & family for a favor (which is not feasible as a long term option), or opting for boarding services (which can be unsafe).
of pet-owners find the process of searching for a sitter tedious.
Mind map that explores how to make the process of finding + booking pet-sitting easier through a mobile app, and potential features it could have.
Trusting the sitter
"I'm worried about..."
My pet's wellbeing
Conducting user surveys -
I asked fellow pet-owners how they feel about the pet-sitting experience, what problems they face, and a solutions.
About 70% are interested in a mobile app that connects them to sitters in their neighborhood, but also raised some concerns about this service.
“Would you be interested in this service?”
“As someone who has a lot of experience in animal care I’d definitely be interested in both sitting and using!”
“What would be your primary concern(s) with this service?”
“How can I keep track of my pet’s status 24/7?”
“What features would you like, that would make this service reliable?”
“I would want to talk to the sitter, see their history in taking care of pets, see their house…”
Aren't there are plenty of pet-sitting apps already?
Yes there are, but are they completely fulfilling user needs? I looked at existing apps such as Rover, Trusted HouseSitting, Wag to understand what they offer to users, and areas they are lacking in.
I learned that most of these apps cater to dogs only, lack a trust-building system, and users have no way to keep track of their pet's status.
Pet-sitters are in demand.
Pet-sitting businesses generated more than $440 million in revenue from $22 million-plus pet-sitting assignments in 2017.*
*Survey by Pet Sitters International (PSI)
Based on the gaps in the market I found, and user interviews, I came up with a variety of features that would set this app apart from its competitors.
Not just limited to dogs / cats, inclusive of all pets.
Real - time updates, through images / video call. (notification prompts)
Pet owner can create hour-to-hour checklist containing tasks to be carried out.
Trial period to develop trust with the sitter.
Sitter experience level shown, and what kind of tasks they can carry out.
I established two user groups for this service (pet owners and pet hosts), since they have varying needs.
Pet owners who are frequent travelers or vacation goers.
Pet hosts are individuals with animal care experience that are looking to make a part-time earning, or for passion.
Due to the scope and timeline of this project, I decided to focus on the pet owner's side of the experience.