Interactive Prototypes
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Longo's App

Our team of four was tasked with designing a new feature that would engage customers with ethical, environmental, & local shopping. Our Client was Longo’s, a family-run up-scale grocery chain in Ontario, Canada. RESEARCH QUESTION “How might we blend technology into store departments to improve the Guest experience, allow for efficient shopping, and expose guests to moments of inspiration leading to increased incremental sales and brand loyalty?” PREPARING Interviewing 2 customers at Longo’s Liberty Village Location, the team got insights on How and with whom customers explore ethical food? What factors do they consider when purchasing? (local, environmental, ethical) What is their reasoning behind purchasing the products they do? CHALLENGE Both of the customers appeared to be far from ​ethical, environmental, & local shopping. Thus to explore the research question and come up with the requested deliverable, we used secondary research, relevant insights from the interviews, and our assumptions. METHODOLOGY Our team designed this deliverable following the one-week Sprint methodology, in which all design functions are conducted in a 5-day week. The following is a high-level breakdown of the process: Monday: Creating the long-term goal, mapping the challenge, learning from experts, and agreeing on a focused target. Tuesday: Reviewing existing products, and sketching new ideas Wednesday: Voting on ideas, and storyboarding Thursday: Basic prototyping Friday: User testing Mapping SETTING A LONG-TERM GOAL We began the sprint at the logical first step: setting a long-term goal. This would be a north star that all decisions, large or small, could be checked against. Our role was to meet customers where they were – in this case, not particularly engaged with ethical shopping – and provide delightful solutions that would help them to learn about and better participate in ethical shopping. Therefore, we came up with our goal to reflect this important nuance: “Engage customers who currently do not prioritize ethical shopping in doing so” LISTING SPRINT QUESTIONS The sprint questions would guide solutions and decisions throughout the sprint, and could also be evaluated in the weeks after. We came up with relevant questions, beginning with the most general and then digging deeper, ultimately creating a final list: Despite the solution, we come up with, will potential customers be interested in ethical shopping? Will the addition of technology improve the shopping experience? Will customers be open to changing their workflow during shopping? Will users be open to using technology while shopping? Will users trust Longo’s with their personal data? DRAWING A MAP The next step was to draft a map that showed customers moving through the store as they purchase groceries at Longo’s location. The map would provide a wide range of utility: it would help us in narrowing our broad challenge into a specific target for the sprint; it would provide structure for solution sketches and prototypes, and it would simply assist in keeping track of how all components fit together. HOW MIGHT WE NOTES In the next step, our team used the “How Might We” (HMW) note-taking method to surface design opportunities that aligned with our goal, keeping an eye on the map to assist with overall context. We first time-boxed ten minutes, and individually came up with as many HMW statements as possible. Once time expired, we arranged these statements in a large single cluster. We then organized similar HMW statements into clusters, and as themes became clear, labelled the various clusters. Next, we prioritized the HMW opportunities using dot voting. Two dot stickers were given to each team member, and an extra two were given to the Decider, and each member placed their stickers on the category they felt should be prioritized in this sprint. In this case, we chose to vote on categories, rather than individual HMW statements, as the number of sprint participants (4) was quite low relative to the number of HMW statements, and voting on individual statements would produce highly dispersed, non-useful results. Based on the vote, the team decided to prioritize the categories of Education, Communicating Benefits, and Efficiency moving forward. We then collectively chose one HMW statement from each category, ensuring it was broad enough in its scope to allow for a variety of creative solutions. We then placed these HMW statements on the map we had drafted earlier. From this map, the goal of the sprint became quite clear. The target customer would be the Longo’s Guest, specifically one that currently does not already prioritize ethical shopping, consistent with our research and long-term goal. The target event would be the point at which the Longo’s Guest explores and navigates the store, and compares and selects their products. This target aligned well with our sprint questions we had listed earlier, which would have to be explored further during user testing. Sketching LIGHTNING DEMOS We began Tuesday morning with each team member giving 3-5 minute “lightning demos” of interesting ideas they had researched the night before, which could potentially serve as inspiration for the ideation phase later in the day. To ensure all ideas remained in our short-term memory, we created a basic infographic of the various ideas we had heard. This would remain on the screen to serve as inspiration during the ideation phase later in the day. SKETCHING Having the raw resources all in front of us – the long-term goal, sprint questions, an annotated map with a target area, and inspirational ideas – it was time to begin ideating. We used an individual, 4-step sketching process to ideate most effectively. First, each participant took twenty minutes to take notes on the goals, opportunities and inspiration that we had collected so far. Then each participant jotted down various rough ideas, comprising of text, doodles, and rough sketches to get several potential ideas on paper. CRAZY 8'S Next, each participant took part in a quick exercise called “Crazy 8’s”, in which we took our strongest ideas from the previous step, and rapidly sketched eight possible variations in eight minutes, allocating one minute per alternative. This exercise forced the team to remove our attachment to the first reasonable solution and consider alternatives that could potentially be more optimal FINAL SKETCH Finally, we came up with the best 1-2 idea(s), and produced a more polished and detailed sketch. The final sketch followed a 3-panel storyboard format, helping to provide a situational context. This final artifact would be used the following day during voting exercises, and thus needed to be detailed enough to understand by other team members Deciding Now that individual ideation was complete, it was time to collectively decide upon a direction that we would be eventually prototyping. However, because a traditional discussion method (solution-critique-solution-critique, and so on) often leads to constant jumping from one option to another, and eventual burnout, we used a systematic five-step process to maximize efficiency. 5-STEP DECISION MAKING PROCESS First, we put up all sketches on the wall in a horizontal row. Next, each participant silently approached each sketch and placed dot stickers beside the parts they liked, putting more stickers on the most exciting ideas. If they had any concerns or questions regarding the sketch, they also wrote it on a sticky note. Once finished, this exercise produced a “heat map” of the top ideas that the team found intriguing. The next step was to discuss each solution as a team and make note of standout ideas. We did so by first gathering around a sketch, and setting a timer for three minutes. The facilitator then narrated the sketch to the best of their understanding and called out standout ideas that had clusters of stickers near them, which were transcribed by a Scribe onto sticky notes and placed under the sketch. At the end, the creator provided any clarification the team may need. Next, we conducted a straw poll, a non-binding vote that helped to gauge the team’s general opinion, and provide some advice to me, as I was the Decider. After being reminded of the long-term goal and sprint questions, each team member placed one dot vote on their preferred sketch. As the Decider, I was given three-dot votes and ultimately I placed the stickers on the sketches around which the team would plan our prototype later in the day. In the final exercise of the day, the team strung the winning ideas into a cohesive storyboard. It showcased our set of ideas on how those fit into the problem we were trying to solve. The proposed solution was a customized shopping experience that helps the user reduce their shopping times by enabling them to easily select products that comply with their personal interests regarding Environmental, Local and Ethical products, we called this “Eco-Friendly Experience”. CONCEPT The idea behind our concept was to include a customization layer in the planning phase where the user can select what eco-friendly parameters matter to them and plan their shopping list accordingly. It would also enable the user to easily get eco-friendly information on products at home and in-store. Finally, it would reduce the navigation time by guiding the guests through an efficient path through the Prototyping PAPER PROTOTYPE To prototype the solution based on the winning ideas We started by drafting rough sketches of the product flow we had decided upon HI-FI PROTOTYPE The Hi-Fi prototype was created in Figma and aimed to help us validate the concept with end users on Friday. Only features that required user testing were included in the prototype. Testing TESTING A PROTOTYPE The prototype was tested with 5 users following the prepared script. While 2 team members were facilitating the testing, the rest of the team was taking notes. POSITIVES The main concept was understandable Participants liked navigation and the overall prototype look and feel Participants liked that the app might help them do ethical shopping and find aproduct more quickly when in the store NEGATIVES Participants found that the navigation in the app is not clear Participants were confused by the flow on how to create a shopping list The majority of participants couldn’t find price and product description ANALYZING TEST RESULTS After the sprint was over and we had enough time, we’ve analyzed the users’ feedback to reiterate our prototype. We’ve considered the insight we got from testing sessions and revisited every issue the users run into, as a result, we’ve created a final prototype. CHECK THE PROTOTYPE HERE We’ve tested the final prototype with 3 more users and get positive feedback, except for several minors with UI. All of the users were able to complete the tasks without any pain-points. Sprint Retrospective WHAT WE DID GREAT Team collaboration was very effectively both in-person and online even though it was quite challenging to align everyone’s schedule Following the design sprint framework to the T helped the team to thoughtfully work through the problem space, explore several concepts, prototype and test the most promising solution in a short period of time WHAT WE DID NOT DO GREAT Primary research was conducted with a very small number of end-customer representatives who, in addition, did not match user profiles targeted by Longo’s WHAT I WILL DO DIFFERENTLY NEXT TIME Conduct at least one in-person interview with stakeholders and experts. Conduct more contextual inquiries with end-customers representatives. Follow activity timing more precisely. Conduct a design sprint in 5 days as suggested by the framework.