ecommerce website mockup

Progress Hardware eCommerce

Build an eCommerce Website from the Ground Up.

Client: Concept  •  Role: UX Designer   •  Date: December 2019

The Brief

Develop and eCommerce website for Progress Hardware, a local hardware store located in Aldgate since 1964.

  • This was the second concept project developed during the General Assembly immersive course. The brief stated that the products should be easy to find, hand-picked items would be given high visibility and the shop’s care for its local customers should be combined in the design.
  • This project was focused on creating a successful Information Architecture. To define the categorization of the items sold online, as well as efficient flows for discovery and purchase, were key points during the sprint.

My role: UX strategy, information architecture, user and competitor research, wireframing & visual design, prototyping, testing.

Read the extended case study on Medium

chai-09

chai-09

The Process.

Understand.
Research

To better understand how the competition organizes their presence online, I did a Competitive Research and conducted a series of user interviews.

  • Opportunities: a quick checkout process would be an advantage over the competition.
  • Insights: online and in-store availability of products is a key feature for users.

Structure
Inf. Architecture

  • I conducted multiple rounds of open and closed Card Sorting to organize online products in logical categories.
  • This helped me to create a first Sitemap and then inform the Primary Navigation of the website.

Define.
Testing & Iterations

I run different rounds of usability testing. This allowed me to identify the main pain points and define the core features of the product.

  • Information needs to be to the point (less is more)
  • Users need feedback after every action
  • It’s important to follow the design conventions expected by customers.

wireframe sketches

Conclusion.

What I learned.
Conventions

This concept was a useful experience to understand and use current design conventions.

  • I learn that is not necessary to reinvent the wheel each time. There is a lot of information out there that can be successfully used as a solid base to then improve steadily.
  • There is a thin line between innovation and confusion. Users that are familiar with a specific flow will have a hard time facing a completely new design.
  • The user’s goals are the key to a successful product, most importantly to keep a clear focus on the must-have features and avoid unnecessary complex solutions.

To Improve.
Next Steps

Things that could be improved and future steps:

  • The search flow could be optimized even more by reducing the number of steps.
  • The current Account Page, although simplified, should be further refined and tested.
  • Delivery options as a guest user are not currently connected with the user’s address.
  • A mobile version of the website, that I started developing, would be an exciting next step.

Feedback.
My Experience

  • This was an intense and challenging two-weeks sprint. I learned a lot during all phases of research and development.
  • Usability testing is such a powerful tool and mastering its use could mean the success of many new products and ventures.
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