Portland Leather Goods
Timeframe: 4 weeks
Tools: Figma, Pen & Paper, Whiteboard
Role: User experience (UX) design, UX research
I was tasked with designing an improved online shopping experience that would center the brand story and increase usability. Along with the team of marketers, customer support, and engineers, I conducted a competitive analysis, created sketches, moderated, synthesized and analyzed qualitative interviews, and reviewed quantitative data. After research, I refined concepts and brought the sketches to high fidelity.
After some years on Etsy, PLG learned that Etsy had some big limitations to their brand growth and identity; They couldn’t create their own unique pathways and experiences (in the digital space) that mimicked the experience people were having in their physical stores.
The goal of this project was the define the new identity online, creating a new 0-1 experience that was uniquely PLG, but still followed common e-commerce conventions to make sure that customers were supported in their interactions and journey.
Research & Concept Testing
In collaboration with marketing and customer support, we conducted deep discovery and exploratory research to learn more about our customers, and understand where current problems exist on the first version of the website. I conducted a full heuristic evaluation of the website, as well as an accessibility review, analytics monitoring, and competitive analysis.
Our research helped to evaluate our assumptions and identify core areas of improvement for usability. The most common feature that people wanted were color swatches of each item so they could scroll without clicking into each item to see the colors available.
Research participants also described that they had a hard time navigating on mobile because they were getting lost on the pages and subpages, and didn't know how to find an item they were looking for easily. Quantitative data also indicated that 86% of people are shopping on mobile, but are completing their purchase on desktop or tablet because of the mobile experience.
Sketches were shared out with the team for early feedback to give opportunity for refinement; making sure the sketches were including just the skeleton of what we absolutely need based on our requirements and considerations we identified.
After design review, four sketches were chosen out of the lot to work on refining further in high-fidelity and prototyping. I created prototypes to conduct usability research to challenge our assumptions, and identify problems, and design recommendations. I collaborated closely with engineers and marketing to conduct quantitative research and analyze the data to highlight design recommendations.
We removed the Portland Leather Goods discounted pricing comparison. In research, people mentioned that they felt deceived, and that PLG was going out of business. A small ux improvement, with a larger brand impact.
We updated the bag layout to show all the color options underneath the main product image. We also added in a breadcrumb, to support people in navigating back easier.
In the image above, you can also see the added 'New' tag to add an emphasis on the new items to help drive people toward new releases, and so people can know that Portland Leather Goods is constantly designing, ideating, and also listening to customer feedback about new products.
To align with existing mental models of other e-commerce experiences, and also help to reduce customer service tickets and a big problem area for customers, we added in a sort and filter mode, as well as a different view so people can toggle between seeing two images, or one large image. Further accessibility improvements on this toggle and filter would be to add in aligned text .
Increased conversion rate
Average order value increased
Newsletter sign up increased
Task time (to purchase) decreased