KiteReaders Publishing planned to launch a self-service extension of its ebook creation platform. The SaaS platform was targeted to independent publishers and children's book authors to quickly create Kindle ebook versions of their print picture (fixed layout) books. My role was to design the product strategy for the site, as well as its IA and UI. This also included the front-end development, using Bootstrap 3 and built with Ruby on Rails, working in tandem with the CTO, who was handling back-end development.
Since users of the site would have little or no technical expertise, it was important to keep the process very simple and easy to understand. I condensed the process down to 5 guided steps. Each step would require a minimum amount of user input needed to run the job within a 24-hour turnaround. Once the job was run through KitePress, the user would sign off on a simulated version of the Kindle ebook before the final .mobi file was generated.
To support the basic simplicity of the process, I took a very clean visual approach to the UI, utilizing white space to maintain clarity and focus on the required actions. Links and related information were kept to a minimum in the main process pages to avoid distractions, as the faster the user moved through the process, the more efficiently revenue could be generated. Supplemental information was provided via a single page Help Center, where accordion tables provided file requirements, FAQs, and other tools.
The user had a visual marker with the placement of a progress tracker at the bottom of each screen. This was also meant to support the platform's ease of use, since it was relatively simple to move from one progress step to the next, leaving no doubt as to how much further they had to go to complete their project.
A project dashboard was also provided for each user to refer to and stay on track, especially when running multiple projects simultaneously.
From the internal admin side, a dashboard was needed to provide a simple overview of jobs, users, and revenue, while also enabling further detailed drill-downs as required.
Admins also needed a Project Queue area where they could trigger internal actions or communications with the customer. My goal was to create a simple interface that facilitated an efficient process through the system quickly and easily.