Case Study|
#design#engineering#prototyping#strategy#telehealth#twilio#user research

Simplifying the healthcare experience for pet owners

MacBook Pro laptop and iPhone, both with Koala Health app displayed on screen
KOALA HEALTH is a pet health company focused on simplifying the healthcare experience for pet owners. They make it easy to shop for pet medications and other pet health products. Koala reached out to Echobind to design and build a new responsive web experience for pet owners to get on-demand care for their pets via telehealth consultations.
Areas of expertise
  • Telehealth
  • Responsive Web
  • User Research
  • UI/UX Design
  • Engineering
  • Existing Brand
  • Twilio

The Challenge

Koala simplifies the healthcare experience for pet owners and needed to offer a way for pet parents to get real-time, on-the-go advice from vets

The Solution

Echobind designed and developed a responsive web experience for pet owners to get on-demand care for their pets via telehealth consultations.

The Results

A seamless experience integrated in their existing website for pet parents to have a vet consultation and order medications from a single place.

For pet owners, the most important factors are cost and convenience

Through interviews, we discovered that many pet parents find in-office vet visits to be expensive and inconvenient, avoiding them unless absolutely necessary. Pet owners want to be able to easily find out if their pet’s medical concern requires immediate attention or if it can be treated at home. Every pet owners we spoke with expressed a desire to speak to a vet right away for quick questions.
Screenshots of documents describing the results of Echobind's customer interviews conducted for Koala Health.

Working with an existing product, a new experience, and a tight timeline

From the research, it became clear that a telehealth experience could service the gap in the pet healthcare market and create a new stream of revenue for the company. Koala already had a successful product and needed to get the new vet consultation experience to market fast. We determined that creating an MVP was the best approach for meeting client and user needs.
User flows diagram created by Echobind for Koala Health, describing the primary goals of the project

A mobile-first experience to meet a wide variety of pet parent needs

As more than half of web traffic is mobile and and due to the portable and flexible needs of pet parents, we designed a mobile-first solution. Utilizing the existing Koala design patterns and brand, we designed a fast and streamlined experience for pet parents to subscribe to the service, have a vet consult, and order any medications recommended.
Screenshots of the Koala Health mobile app

A desktop experience to make it easy for busy professional vets to use

The Koala vets are busy professionals who would be conducting telehealth visits on their desktops in between their in-person practices. Because of their varying technological proficiency, we designed a clean and minimal experience that made it quick and easy for vets to onboard new patients and host consultations.
Screenshots of the Koala Health desktop app

Both pet parents and vets found the experience intuitive and easy-to-navigate

We conducted unmoderated usability tests for both the vet and pet parent experience to validate the design decisions and iterate before moving into development. For both experiences, we had the following results:
completion rate for all tasks
4.5 out of 5
average ease-of-use rating for all tasks
4.8 out of 5
overall rating for all tasks

Using Stripe to manage all subscription payment plans and coupons

After some planning, our Certified Stripe Architects determined that all of Koala’s subscription needs—multiple subscription payment options, reoccurring payments, coupon codes, etc—would be achievable using three Stripe products: Payments, Subscriptions, and Invoices.

Our engineers used Stripe Payments and Subscriptions to capture payment methods and allow users to subscribe to Vet Consultations. After a user added their payment method of choice, they were directed to the screen pictured above. The system we created pulled in the price variants on our newly created Stripe product, allowing users two options. Koala’s users were then also able to cancel and manage their payment methods associated with Stripe, within the app.

Payment flow for users

Integrating Phone and Video Calls and Notifications for Vet Consults

Echobind wanted to create a seamless experience for both Vets and Pet Parents when requesting consultations. To do this, our Twilio developers leveraged Twilio’s Programmable Phone, Video, and Messaging Services for SMS. This allowed us to customize the experience to Koala’s needs for both parties.

We leveraged Twilio Video as follows: Pet Parents are shown a dynamic waiting room experience and brought directly into the call once the Vet is ready. Likewise, Vets are able to see the Consultation summary while on the call, as well as take Exam Notes allowing them to document their thoughts and needs better. These notes are saved and used to recap the more detailed After Visit Summary that is sent to the Pet Parent.

We leveraged Twilio Phone as follows: a Pet Parent does not have to worry about staying logged into an app near the computer. Instead, the Vet will dial the Pet Parent from their application and connect via Twilio TwiML App. In the event the Vet hits voicemail, they are able to redial and attempt to connect to the Pet Parent before moving on. All of this was achievable due to Twilio’s programmable SDKs.

Examples of a video call

Assigning and Connecting Vets to Consults

Now that Pet Parents and Vets both had ways to access the platform, the remaining challenge was creating the right system to match them and connect them.

Echobind constructed a few ways to connect Vets both for the initial launch and for future needs. For launch, there were no legal restrictions to be concerned about for a basic consult. We were able to assign Vets via a FIFO (first-in-first-out) queue. However, knowing legal requirements would change in the long run, we made sure to keep a record of the following:

  • The time of the request
  • The Pet Parents’ location at the time of the request
  • Concerns from the Pet Parent
  • The Vets License by State
  • The Vets Specialties

Over time, this will enable us to expand Koala’s matching system to meet legal requirements for fuller consultations that require prescribing. We will be able to match Vets to Pet Parents by region and specialties, as well as start a concept of “Shifts” for Vets to know when they are available.

Tracking this information over time, we can also try to pair Pet Parents with the same Vet if available for a better-rounded User Experience. We were pleased to have a solution that was both suitable for launch and yet still flexible to meet our client's future needs.

An example of a consultation page with a waiting and completed queue

The Outcome

Koala vets now have an easy and streamlined way to track their consultation queue and review previous consults from the day, read pet parents’ pre-consultation notes and document post-consultation summaries to be shared back, and conduct video and phone consult calls with pet parents.

Koala pet parents can now be connected by phone or video to a trusted vet from the comfort of their home via subscribing to monthly or yearly virtual vet consultation services. The Koala Telehealth platform now offers an easy way to see a vet and track pet medications, vet consultations, and vet post-consultation notes. And the Koala company is one large step closer to making Pet Parenting a whole lot easier.

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