The Finnish postal service’s OmaPosti is all about making the little everyday things a little easier. With OmaPosti you can manage your letters, packages and bills in one place – package tracking and returns included. OmaPosti archives your e-invoices safe, and lets you pay all of them directly from the app. This well working digital platform has opened a number of new business opportunities for Posti.
“OmaPosti has become the cornerstone of Posti’s strategy over the years. Users can take Posti’s services with them wherever they go, while we get invaluable data on the changing needs of our customers”, says Timo Korander, the person largely behind OmaPosti’s development strategy at Posti.
Qvik came into the picture soon after the initial release of OmaPosti in 2017. We redesigned the app’s user interface and did further development on the application, especially on native mobile platforms. The improvements in the service were quickly reflected in both user numbers and ratings.
App store ratings have a big influence on users’ download decisions. If a service provider is not happy about their application’s ratings, they can still take decisive action and get the stars their service deserves, if they just approach the users in the right way. This was the playbook for OmaPosti as well.
“Qvik was essential in bringing to the table expertise that we lacked, for example in user interfaces, native mobile solutions and payments.”
You don’t know much before you test your hypotheses
Posti bases its development on a combination of quantitative and qualitative data. Starting with OmaPosti, the use of in-depth user interviews in service development has spread throughout Posti’s organization. Combining these interviews with user data reveals development needs and helps prioritize development efforts.
Posti has great premises for data-driven service development. Every update reaches a huge number of users immediately upon release, and any problems will come to light quickly if you only know where to look.
“Even our most experienced team members have been surprised by how far off the mark your own hypotheses can be after you open a service to 1.3 million consumers and the real user data starts coming in.”
This was the case with OmaPosti’s main view, which had a very different layout on the initial release.
“User data and feedback quickly revealed that the + symbol used for adding deliveries and bills was not clear enough, and users had not discovered the function. So our first order of business was to make adding packages and invoices clearer”, says Designer Jukka Forsten from Qvik.
Forsten redesigned the OmaPosti application’s user interface and also contributed to the design of the OmaPosti web service. He was also tasked with harmonizing OmaPosti services across different channels in the design system spirit. Forsten was a part of the OmaPosti team until January 2020.
“Another major insight was that we were showing the package’s delivery stages, prices, dates and sundry other information in the same column. Putting such a variety of information in one place confused users and did not provide any added value”, Forsten says.
Improvements were made gradually as feedback, user data and the results of user surveys came in. The upcoming EU Accessibility Directive’s requirements were also taken into account in the design from the ground up.
“The first version of the service was also kind of engineery, and we wanted to change that”, Forsten says. “User interviews and feedback also quickly revealed what users couldn’t find and what needed highlighting. The interviews shed light on many issues identified with payments, for instance.”
OmaPosti’s convenient payment function is one of the service’s key features. Payments are implemented with Posti’s Payment Gateway, which supports a number of different payment methods and makes it easy to add new ones.
User-oriented and accessibility-first development
OmaPosti has risen to the top of the app store download rankings on several occasions in Finland. It was no accident, but the result of ambitious targets, user surveys and bold data-driven development.
“We’ve climbed to the top in app store downloads, even though OmaPosti is not an entertainment service and its popularity can’t be compared to social media or games, for example”, Korander says.
The pole position is not the result of major marketing campaigns, but rather the growth hacking mentality applied to development. The service’s design has focused on the right things, and that shows in the results.
“It was fantastic to be given such free rein in this project. Posti really trusted the expertise of the team. The developers were hardcore, and we had quite a lot of freedom in our work, though we did of course discuss our plans with Posti”, Forsten says.
OmaPosti reaped international accolades
OmaPosti won the top prize in the World Post and Parcel Award 2020 competition’s online store category and also made the GrandOne 2019 gala finals in Finland.
Posti believes the recognition to be due to the bold development work behind the app. It has taken years of development to bring OmaPosti to where it is today, and the application’s development is far from finished.
“OmaPosti has been a success story inside Posti too. Its strategic role has grown beyond anyone’s wildest imaginings,” Korander says.
“The awards and accolades were actually not a surprise to us – we’ve certainly put in the time and money. Winning an international award of course shows that our work stands up to global comparison as well.”
The world keeps turning and the development continues
Posti has just recently published its new brand, and OmaPosti is getting a slightly new look as well. Qvik had its fingers deep in the UI design pie this time too.
“OmaPosti has been shaped into what it is by our data-driven and user-oriented approach, which will continue to mold it in the future too”, says Korander.
Numbers for the app: Store & Google Play rating 4.4, Over 3 million parcels tracked, Monthly active users 904000 and growth in usage 94%
Growth numbers and ratings are from Aug. 2019 – Jan. 2020.
Qvik has been involved in many Posti projects, including OmaPosti, Payment Gateway and OneAccount, and the cooperation continues.
“Working with the Qvikies is really fun and hassle-free. All who have worked on the team over the years – whether on OmaPosti or in our Payments team – have been super competent and great team players. That’s always been a major consideration for us.”