Despite the horror stories of unfulfilled orders and not to mention the thousands of half-inspired ideas, Kickstarter is still an extremely powerful crowdfunding platform for getting product design ideas off the ground…as long as project creators do their homework in advance.

According to the company, a majority of their users that back projects are oftentimes frequent users of the platform who regularly check-in to see what’s new and enjoy “sitting back and watching the videos”. However since they integrated their ‘Launch Now’ feature in the Summer of 2014 – an option that loosened Kickstarter’s pre-approval grip on project requirements – the collection of projects (and arguable dilution of quality) has increased dramatically to the point of making it difficult for those users to wade through.

“I think a lot of our power users — people come to Kickstarter to find out about new cool stuff — are not necessarily looking for a specific thing they want to back,” said Kickstarter product designer Zack Sears. “It’s more like, “I just want to see all this cool stuff that people are making.” Really embracing the idea of being able to get a cross section of this creative universe.”

Yesterday, nearly two years after launching their first app,’ Kickstarter announced that they have made their platform experience easier to navigate through a major overall of their iOS app…which also includes an iPad version that wasn’t previously available. Previously, mobile users were forced to use a vertical chronological timeline of projects with minimal control over their discovery options. The new design provides a much-needed UI-overhaul that features everything from improved navigation and filter control to better graphics, more interactivity and gestural controls.


To coincide with the launch of the app, the Kickstarter App Development team gave more insight into their app design process – including how the majority of backers use the crowdfunding platform to discover projects – over on the Kickstarter blog.

“I think it has informed a lot of future direction for the project page,” added Sears. “We recently rolled out a revamp of the project page, and I think there are hints of this new stuff, but we’re going to do it a little more incrementally on the site. It’s almost entirely changed the way we think about the Discovery section of the site and what we care about putting front and center — how we present categories, how we present the primary ways of slicing and dicing the projects.”



“Right now, if you go to a category page, the category name is front and center and all the sub-categories are below that. The content you want will be grouped together. We’re basically pulling out of the advanced filter and putting that front and center, so it’ll be category sorted. That’s something that we found just by looking at the data around the new Discovery experience. That’s what people are doing nine out of ten times.”


Read the interview in-full here or download the new app for iPhone or iPad over at the App Store. While there isn’t an Android app out yet, it is currently under development.


Simon is a Brooklyn-based industrial designer and Managing Editor of EVD Media. When he finds the time to design, his focus is on helping startups develop branding and design solutions to realize their product design vision. In addition to his work at Nike and various other clients, he is the main reason anything gets done at EvD Media. He once wrestled an Alaskan alligator buzzard to the ground with his bare hands… to rescue Josh.