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Lithys 2017: Fitbit- Digital Design Excellence

Lithys 2017: Fitbit- Digital Design Excellence

The Fitbit Community Team was formed in 2013 with the mission of providing users accurate information, timely inspiration, and a complete support experience through broad social listening and on-brand engagement across an increasing variety of digital platforms.




Company: Fitbit, Inc.logo_fitbit.png

Entry submitted by: Allison Leahy (Director of Community)

Community: Fitbit Community

Lithy category:  Digital Design Excellence


As the leader in the connected health and fitness market, Fitbit’s mission is to help everyone live healthier, more active lives. By combining the power of technology with insights, inspiration and guidance, Fitbit helps people reach their health and fitness goals.   


The Fitbit Community launched in 2013 as a space for customers to seek product support and discuss personal health. The forums were a major step for Fitbit’s support presence, facilitating conversation around dozens of unique products and features, and across eight different languages. We iterated and improved upon this initial platform to evolve with customer expectations, until it was clear we were ready to go even farther with a full redesign.


In aligning with Fitbit’s ongoing mission to facilitate healthier living for all customers, as well as the Support Team’s objective to provide world class assistance to customers on their social platform of choice, our redesign goals included:

  • A fully mobile-responsive platform, to better serve the growing population of mobile visitors
  • Guidance for visitors to easily locate an appropriate forum for their inquiry
  • Clear identification of our moderation staff and Community Council superuser group
  • Increased sense of personal identity for community members


Fitbit’s brand has always had a striking visual presence, incorporating stylish products, bold colors, and friendly communication, so it was important to us that our forum felt stylistically aligned with existing Fitbit webpages and app interfaces. We want Fitbit users to feel at home and familiar in our Community Forums.


The end result prominently features the products themselves, more effectively guiding users to the appropriate forum for their needs (figure 1.1). Active community member avatars appear on every landing page, contributing to a sense of continuity within the Fitbit site. Updated Community profile pages allow users to share a little more about themselves so that they can find and spark connections with like-minded community members.


Figure 1.1: Community landing pagefitbit_dde_001.png


Aside from aesthetics, it was important to us that users felt a strong support presence within our forums. The Fitbit Community is first and foremost a support forum, and we wanted to give users the opportunity to stand out and be recognized for their contributions. We put a great deal of focus on votes and solutions, pairing those totals alongside usernames and putting respective components in full visibility on every board. We also clearly identified our Community Council superuser group using a unique custom icon and footer component to give them more of a standout presence and provide other users with a better understanding of their purpose (figure 1.2, 1.3)


Figure 1.2: Community Council and Moderator author widgetsfitbit_dde_002.png


 Figure 1.3: Community Council footer componentfitbit_dde_003.png


The Fitbit Community’s responsive redesign took place over a six-month period, with contributions from several individuals across a wide variety of teams. This process involved the following stages: 

  • Reviewing user analytics from our existing Community and the Fitbit Help Site
  • Deciding key objectives in collaboration with our executive, design, product, and marketing teams, as well as top forum contributors
  • Several rounds of mockups and revisions, incorporating feedback from the larger Fitbit Design team
  • Extensive testing of interface, new features, and SSO integration
  • Implementation across eight languages
  • Testing and bug-fixing with initial release
  • Ongoing refinement and new features added in regular updates


As early as Q1, 2015 we observed an increasing trend of mobile visitors, and the need for an improved mobile experience.fitbit_dde_004.png


Following the responsive redesign, we observed a steady increase in mobile traffic, peaking at 73% over the 2016-17 holiday season.fitbit_dde_005.png


Similarly, we saw increased engagement with features like votes (kudos).fitbit_dde_006.png


The positive engagement trend continued throughout 2016, coupled with an increase in responsiveness and interaction as illustrated through the CHI Factors Trend graph.fitbit_dde_007.png


Even louder than numbers are the words of our visitors, “The layout is very good. Ease of use and user interface are both excellent,” says longtime Blaze user and community member, Dr. G.


Excellence in digital design is a pursuit with many small victories along the way. We never want to be done with this process, and we are always enthusiastic about putting more time and energy into refining our online community spaces to deliver collaborative, engaging, and fulfilling experiences with every visit.