Close Connect

Social interaction application for dating with an unusual flow


UX/UI Design, Social Interaction App
Project Overview
Close Connect is a dating application designed to create meaningful connections without contributing to the swipe left culture. Close Connect wants to help its users by creating an environment that mimics the natural flow of interacting with someone new.
How to create an experience flow that feels organic to the user but quickly provides some measure of natural and real connection between singles.
UX Tools
UX/UI Designer 
UX Practices
Information Architecture
High-Fi Wireframe
Interactive Prototype
Jump to Final Design


The Approach
The initial concept was to have the application heavily focus on locational interactions, enable all active users to connect with other users in their area both on-the-go and at set locations.

During the research phase, I focused on emphasizing user needs by evaluating the process of meeting new people on social platforms versus meeting new people face to face. The goal was to identify any patterns, connections, and pain points that would influence design decisions.

Online Dating

Real-Life Dating

Easy to maneuver even with a busy schedule

-Larger Arena
Not limited to a geographical area

-High chances of a right match
Algorithm matchmaking

-Fake Profiles
Potential dangers of meeting strangers

-No Contact
Constant distraction from real life can lead to addiction to

-Can't identify relationship status/sexual orientation  

-No indication if a person is in a committed relationship or sexuality

-Not universally seen as a safe way to meet someone
Prevent potential relationships or deter users from overcoming the stigma

-Great Story
Lasting impression on the first encounter

-Comfortable & Mutual friends
Natural interactions allow comfortable flow into personal life

-Better Judgement
Allowing to see the person can judge if you want to engage or not in the first few seconds

Some people are too shy to approach

-Time & Money wastage
Drawing out the dating stage, or non-commitment

-First Impression
Better to gauge a person's character
Main findings:

-Both online and in person dating valued a first impression like experience creating a stronger connection.
-Both in-person and online dating  share fears of dishonesty, misleading, and potentially dangerous activity occurring online or on a blind date.
-In the wake of Covid-19, addressing online dating pitfalls have become more of a priority.
-Online dating, as users swipe, they are deliberately seeking out many options at once–putting themselves in 'decision paralysis'
-Both online and in- person dating value an instant connection

These results motivated the team to find a natural flow of meeting someone new, in person, using an online application that captures the sparkle and butterflies of face to face contact, while limiting the users exposure unnatural settings, and reducing dangers of misleading or false user profiles.
Paid apps tend to cause harm to the user experience. For a monetization experience to successfully generate revenue, it's crucial to have happy users. Our goal is to mitigate and reduce monetization pitfalls that could negatively impact the experience. 

We researched the dominant application revenue models that drive monetization through  advertising, In-app purchases, and subscriptions.  

Collected data based on 2020 statistical information, below see  the global revenue from mobile applications.
Based on the revenue indicators and the current monetization content. We narrowed our focus to advertising and subscription strategies.
Transactional and Experiential Journey
Our goal is to create an immersive transactional focused experience that will engage certain users following the ad and subscription led strategies.

Both journeys will have different levels of engagement. Mapping both drivers will highlight transactional behavior and identify the best areas within the user journey to monetize.
Design Insights
Subscription Driver

-Support and empower the user with relevant subscription content options.
-Stimulate user with the option to consider and select a stage to help understand subscription details and performance.
-Ensure hassle free, convenient, and fast purchase on the app.

Ad Driver

-Inspire and excite users with opportunities to push the boundary of their experience. 
-Present curated options for the user to engage with.
-Ensure hassle-free, purchase free, and quick turn around to app options/upgrade.


In the brainstorming session, we wanted to pivot from all other online dating applications to mimic the natural flow of in-person dating.
Ideation Feedback
The new user flow concept received negative feedabck and raise the following design concerns:

-User may not want to pursue active users in the same geographical area
-Access to all potential matches could overwhelm the user
-Users may be uncomfortable with video calling match immediately
-Users may not be "Camera Ready"

The feedback motivated us to address the input by brainstorming features that could alleviate design and potential user concerns.
User Flow
Illustrated below, the user will complete, sign-up, profile setup, connection preferences, and access to the matchmaking pool.
Feedback & Findings
We were able to address all feedback concerns in the wireframe.  The user will have audio/video calling capabilities, location settings, match pool limit, and a waiting list of users pending connections, and awaiting for video/audio introduction.
High­-Fidelity Wireframe
Design Considerations & Testing
With the interactive prototype we were able to conduct testing with a small user group to identify any design errors or flow inconsistencies.

-Empty States are often overlooked in UX; I included all possible empty states in the final design to improve the user experience.
- Notifications were added to serve as notifiers for specific flows
-Error Notifications
-Dark Mode

As the project continues to go through iterations, usability testing will be conducted in the demo stage and will update accordingly.


To measure the design's success, I revisited the main goal: to create a users online dating application that closely mimicked in-person dating, forming initial attractions in real time, while eliminating some of the pitfalls of online dating. The initial design product was successful, it was well received by the client and potential users. I'm looking forward to the second iteration of this project.

CloseConnect is currently in the development stage and projected to launch in May 2021, officially.
Anu /Innovative /Fireside Tech /Close Connect /Mindframe /
Designed with ♥ and ♫
Brettney Fountain UX/UI Designer