Fall 2022

A ticketing flow for movies with friends


As part of my UX design certificate program from Coursera, I designed a ticketing flow for a responsive movie theater website that helps friends plan trips to the movies.

My Role

Strategy Responsibilities

  • Conducted user interviews and surveys
  • Completed a competitive audit
  • Clarified user needs through empathy maps, personas and user journeys

Design Responsibilities

  • Developed and utilized a design system
  • Established user flows, wireframes, and a prototype
  • Performed usability testing
Mobile phones showing a variety of Film Club app screens

THE Challenge

People planning trips to the movies with family and friends are often stuck buying tickets for the whole group, and having to collect payments later. This makes going to the movies a hassle, further contributing to shrinking audiences.

My Goals

Design a feature for a responsive movie theater website that lets users save and share seats with friends and family, streamlining the ticketing process and simplifying trips to the cinema.


Quantitative Research: Surveys

A survey of 10 participants revealed room for improvement in the online ticketing experience:

  • 56% dislike buying tickets online ahead of time.
  • 50% browse showtimes for a specific movie at nearby theaters.
  • 20% go to the movies less than once a year.

Empathy Maps

I conducted five user interviews and organized the data gathered into two empathy maps representing two distinct segments within the research group — frequent moviegoers who use websites and apps to buy advanced tickets, and users who go to the movies less often, preferring independent and arthouse films, and more flexibility when seeing movies.

Segment 1 - Frequent Moviegoers

Empathy map showing feedback from frequent moviegoers.

Segment 2 - Less Frequent Moviegoers

Empathy map showing feedback from less frequent moviegoers.

Qualitative Research: Interviews

Findings from the interviews helped clarify specific areas for improvement:

  • Some users feel that buying tickets in advance is too much of a commitment, and would prefer more flexibility when purchasing ahead.
  • Users find it hard to organize a group of people going to the movies, and dislike having to wait outside with friend's tickets, or get reimbursed.
  • Buying tickets online can be too cumbersome, with too many options and service fees.
  • Users don't always know about independent and arthouse movies that are playing in smaller theaters, and wish this information was easier to find.

Competitive Analysis

Competitive analysis table.

Gaps Identified

  • Cluttered and confusing ticket flow
  • No way to hold seats for friends
  • Convenience fees
  • Prompted to create an account, causing friction

Synthesizing research

Pain Points and Solutions

After reviewing the biggest pain points, I decided to focus on designing a feature allowing users to hold and share seats with their friends, since this solution seemed most aligned with the needs of frequent moviegoers.

Major Pain Points

  • When buying tickets for a group, users must coordinate with the box office, or wait outside to meet people.
  • Purchasing movie tickets for friends and having to get reimbursed.
  • Difficult to find independent, foreign and arthouse films playing at smaller venues.
  • Not enough flexibility when buying tickets ahead

Proposed Solutions

  • Design a feature allowing users to hold and share nearby seats with their friends, for a limited time.
  • Build a unique product for finding and buying tickets to these movies.
  • Create a "Text Tickets" feature, so guests can arrive separately.
  • Design an account-based system allowing moviegoers to swap or defer reservations without penalty.

User Journey

Mapping out the steps users would take while interacting with the feature helped identify areas for improvement.

A map showing the user journey.


Two personas representing different user types within the research group.

A user persona for a young nurse who goes to the movies frequently.A user persona for a recording engineer who goes to the movies less frequently.


User Flow

Diagramming the user flow helped organize the user interface.

A user flow diagramming the ticketing process with the option to save seats.

High-fidelity Designs

A seating chart and contacts form allow users to select seats to hold and then text them to friends.

Seating chart and text friends screens on tablet.

Creating a Design System

I developed a design system including color, typography and other visual elements to ensure consistency across screens.

The design system.An explanation of the colors and design choices.


Save and Share Seats

After completing checkout, users can hold up to six seats to share with friends, who have 48 hours to purchase them. This feature is responsive and can be used on a computer, tablet or mobile device.


Animation of save seats flow on desktop.


Animation of save seats flow on tablet.


Animation of save seats flow on mobile.


The Power of Design Systems

This project showed me the value of utilizing scalable and reusable design systems, particularly for responsive design. I learned about atomic design principles and best practices for building various parts of a user interface, from the smallest elements to the largest. It was fun designing a product that could bring people together in real life, and imagining ways that movie theaters might adapt for the future.