Introduction to the problem

One of the features that couples have expressed they want is a wedding planning guide. 

Couples have never planned a wedding, and there are so many moving parts, it is overwhelming. They don’t know where to start or what they should do. This leads to stress. 

Existing solutions

  1. Blogs – there are endless blogs or websites which offer PDF planners that tell couples what they should be doing. They’re free, and they’re a list.
  2. Major sites like Wedding Wire and The Knot offer the same thing, with the added features of not being a PDF but an online checklist where users can check off items as they go, and/or add notes to the tasks.
  3. Hire a wedding planner. The average cost in the USA, $4000.

The problem with existing solutions

The problem with PDF downloads is obvious. It’s just a  long list that user has no way of keeping up with or modifying. It’s just a PDF telling you what to do, not helping you do it.

The problem with Wedding Wire and The Knot is that it’s overwhelming, presented as one long list of things to do. And that It’s too much. A user doesn’t need this overwhelmingly long list. 

Keep in mind The Knot and Wedding Wire are both owned by the same company. A few years ago, the company the owns The Knot bought Wedding Wire.

Why we want to do this

  1. It helps our users plan better and easier
  2. Our users are asking for it
  3. It gives more reasons for our users to continue to come back to our site and use it more and more. The same way social media looks to get users to come back to their site and stay on it
  4. In the future version of a B2B, I imagine our wedding vendor customers will be able to customize this planner and let couples use it, reducing the vendor’s workload and encouraging them to want to use and subscribe to WDT as a regular tool they use for wedding planning.

This is how Wedding Wire looks:

This is how The Knot looks:

Our possible solution:

In a long conversation with ChatGPT, this is the current set of ideas which I feel make sense and we can implement.

Based on my understanding of user behavior and the potentially overwhelming nature of wedding planning, many users may prefer the checklist to be broken down into manageable chunks. This approach can make the process feel less daunting and more achievable, as it allows users to focus on one task at a time without feeling overwhelmed by the big picture.

This approach is in line with the concept of “progressive disclosure” in User Experience (UX) design, which involves providing only the necessary information or options to the user at any given moment, thereby reducing confusion, clutter, and cognitive workload.

Users will feel a sense of achievement as they complete each task, and this positive reinforcement may encourage them to return to the platform. Additionally, having the tasks revealed or unlocked as they progress can create a sense of anticipation and make the experience more engaging.

Of course, there might be some users who would prefer to see the entire process at a glance for the sake of transparency and to allow for long-term planning. Therefore, an optimal solution could potentially involve an initial overview of the process, followed by a more detailed, step-by-step guide that users can progress through at their own pace.


To implement gamification elements into the checklist, you could consider the following:

1. Progress bar or completion percentage: Showing users how far they’ve come can be very motivating. This could be a simple bar that fills up as tasks are completed, or a percentage that increases with each completed task. You might also show the number of tasks completed out of the total.

2. Badges or rewards for milestones: As users complete certain tasks or reach certain stages in the planning process, you could award them with badges or rewards. These could be purely symbolic (e.g., “Congrats, you’ve booked your venue! Here’s your ‘Venue Victor’ badge!”) or they could come with tangible benefits (e.g., a discount code for a partner vendor).

3. Unlockable content: (Brides will be annoyed by this) Some tasks or sections of the planning process could be “locked” until certain tasks are completed. This can create a sense of progression and accomplishment as users unlock new parts of the checklist.

4. Friendly reminders or encouragements: Sometimes planning can be overwhelming, and users might appreciate friendly nudges to complete certain tasks. This could be in the form of email reminders or in-app notifications. Make sure these are encouraging and positive rather than nagging or pushy.

5. Personalized feedback: (Maybe Later, but not now) Based on the user’s progress and the information they’ve provided, you could offer personalized tips or suggestions. For example, if they’ve chosen a beach venue, you could suggest tasks related to that, like “Consider a backup plan for rain” or “Think about a shoe station for guests to swap their heels for sandals.”

Remember, the goal of gamification is to make the process more engaging and less stressful, so it’s important to strike a balance and not overwhelm the user with too many gamification elements. Keep it fun and light!

Additional Thoughts

6. Interactive Calendar: An interactive calendar that marks important dates and deadlines could be very helpful. It could sync with the user’s own digital calendar (like Google Calendar or Apple’s iCal), so they’ll get reminders on their phone or computer.

7. Prioritization System: The checklist could include a system for users to prioritize tasks based on their importance and deadline. The most urgent and important tasks could be highlighted to help the user focus on what’s most important at any given time.

8. Visual Aids: Visual aids such as infographics, photos, or short videos could be included to make the checklist more engaging and to provide useful information. For example, a short video on “How to Choose a Wedding Venue” could be linked in the relevant section of the checklist.

9. Vendor Suggestions: (Later not now)Based on the user’s location and wedding style, the checklist could suggest local vendors for things like flowers, catering, or photography. This could be a good opportunity for partnerships with local businesses.

10. Personalization: (This is really the ability for user to add their own checklist item) The checklist could be personalized based on the user’s wedding style, cultural or religious traditions, and personal preferences. For example, if the user is planning a beach wedding, the checklist could include tasks specific to that type of wedding.

11. Checklist Sharing: (Later not now) Even though the planning might be done by one user, they might want to share their progress or certain tasks with their partner, family members, or wedding planner. A feature to share the checklist, or parts of it, could be very useful.

12. Emotional Support: Wedding planning can be stressful, so some form of emotional support could be a nice feature. This could be as simple as positive affirmations or motivational quotes that pop up as users progress through the checklist.

Design Option #1

Based on our previous discussions and the constraints you’ve provided, here’s a possible design for the bottom 70% of the page:

  1. Centralized Checklist (50% of the bottom area): This should be the core feature and therefore occupy the most space. Each checklist item could be a line with the task name, due date, and a checkbox to mark it as done. Items could be grouped by category (e.g., Venue, Catering, Invitations) with the ability to collapse or expand each category. High priority items can be highlighted or bolded. Each item could have an informational tooltip or pop-up that offers additional details or advice when clicked.

  2. Interactive Calendar (20% of the bottom area): Positioned to the right of the checklist. This could display due dates from the checklist. Clicking on a date could highlight the associated tasks in the checklist. It should also offer functionality to adjust dates, which would in turn update the checklist.

  3. Vendor Suggestions (15% of the bottom area): This could be a panel to the right of the calendar, with a list of suggested vendors based on the upcoming tasks in the checklist. Each suggestion could include the vendor’s name, a brief description, and a link to their website or profile. It should be scrollable independently of the rest of the page to allow users to browse without losing their place in the checklist or calendar.

  4. Gamification and Progress (15% of the bottom area): This could be a horizontal bar or circle at the bottom of the page, showing the user’s progress through the checklist. It could fill up as tasks are completed, with markers for milestones along the way. Hovering over or clicking on these markers could show the associated achievement (e.g., “All Vendors Booked!”).

This layout would provide users with a comprehensive overview of their wedding planning tasks, along with relevant vendor suggestions and a visual representation of their progress. Remember to maintain a clean, user-friendly design with clear fonts, intuitive icons, and a consistent color scheme.

Design Option #2 - I think this is better then #1

Top 30% of the page:

  • Left Column (50% of the top area): Displays the user’s name, wedding date, and a countdown timer to the wedding day. This provides a personalized greeting and keeps the wedding date top-of-mind.

  • Right Column (50% of the top area): A space for the user to upload a photo of themselves with their fiancé, adding a personal touch and making the space feel more uniquely theirs.

Bottom 70% of the page:

  • Horizontal Timeline (30% of the bottom area): This is the heart of the wedding planning feature, where tasks appear as cards along a timeline stretching from the present date to the wedding date. Tasks closer to the current date are towards the left and future tasks are towards the right. Each card on the timeline could be color-coded based on urgency (e.g., red for urgent, yellow for upcoming, green for completed tasks). Tasks could also have a star icon that users can click to bookmark the task.

  • Interactive Calendar (15% of the bottom area): Positioned below the timeline, an interactive calendar where tasks are also displayed according to their due dates. Clicking on a date would highlight the corresponding tasks on the timeline.

  • Task Detail & Vendor Suggestions (15% of the bottom area): On the left side below the timeline and calendar, this area displays detailed information about a selected task. This could include a description of the task, tips or guides, and suggested vendors based on user’s location and wedding style.

  • Budget Input & Tracker (20% of the bottom area): Adjacent to the Task Detail area, a section where users can input the cost for each task. Below the input field, display a dynamic budget tracker showing total budget, amount spent so far, and remaining budget. Visualize this data with a progress bar or pie chart for clear understanding.

  • Starred Tasks (10% of the bottom area): To the right of the Budget Input & Tracker, a panel listing tasks that the user has starred or bookmarked. Clicking a starred task in this panel would highlight it on the timeline and display its details in the Task Detail area. This panel also includes a search bar at the top to quickly find and navigate to starred tasks.

  • Progress Dashboard (10% of the bottom area): Positioned at the rightmost side, this panel displays user progress in a visually engaging way, such as a progress bar or a pie chart showing percentage of tasks completed. Also, include positive affirmations or motivational messages when users reach certain milestones.

This layout provides a comprehensive, engaging, and interactive wedding planning experience. The horizontal timeline gives an overview of tasks and their timeline, while the Task Detail, Budget Tracker, and Starred Tasks panels offer detailed information and personalization. The Interactive Calendar ties together the timeline and tasks, and the Progress Dashboard offers motivation and a sense of accomplishment. The design should be clean, visually appealing, and intuitive to navigate, with a consistent color scheme and typography that aligns with your brand.