RESEARCH, UX STRATEGY, IDEATION, WIREFRAMING, AND PROTOTYPING
Timeframe: 2 months
* This is a passion project developed throughout my time during an FIT accelerated UX design course
Uniqlo is a Japanese casual wear designer, manufacturer, and retailer. The company was founded in 1949 as a men’s only clothing shop. The company opened its first unisex store in the year 1984. By 1994, it had expanded to over 100 retail shops across Japan. Uniqlo uses “private-label strategy”, meaning they produce and sell their label exclusively. Today, there are over 2,249 stores internationally.
OUR ROLES: RESEARCH, UX STRATEGY, IDEATION, WIREFRAMING, AND PROTOTYPING
Team Members: Martha Vandemortel and Aimee Batiste
Upon our initial inspection of the app, we immediately noticed upon opening the app that it was extremely cluttered and disorganized. There was a lot of content as well as text. It was just overwhelming and reminded us of an extremely in-store retail shopping experience.
At first, we battled with the understanding of what UX meant as we kept mistaking it for UI design. In this class, function was greater than design. However, as each class went by we finally came to a greater understanding of what UX is.
We began to stray away from concentrating on the design aspect of the app and instead began to dig deep on the utilization aspect. Our questions transitioned from how we could use our abilities to improve the app aesthetics to how or what we could do to make this app as smooth and as enjoyable of an experience for the user.
OUR TASK: TO DESIGN A SMOOTH AND MORE PLEASURABLE SHOPPING EXPERIENCE WITHIN THE UNIQLO APP UTILIZING OUR USER RESEARCH.
My team and I performed several variations of research to solve for the who, what, and why.
Because of COVID our research was limited to virtual forms. Our first form of research was done over Google Forms. We used the data collected from these surveys to gather information on our audience based on their age, where they prefer to shop, whether they have been on the Uniqlo App before, and their suggestions for app improvements.
Based on the research we found that our audience’s age ranged from 18 – 31 years old. All of whom have shopped at either Zara, H&M and Uniqlo. A mass majority had not shopped on the Uniqlo app and normally shopped for their clothes online or at their retail stores. Users found that the Uniqlo app could be adjusted for easier usability. Their comments included UI suggestions such as disliking the use of red due to its overwhelming nature for the eye as well as pointing out that a more organized interface would improve their experience.
After completing our research through a survey questionnaire we conducted a video interview through zoom. We interviewed 9 people in total.
The core questions that we asked include:
While conducting these interviews the comments that stuck out to me the most were the users love for sales, discounts and easy navigation.
Based on the affinity map we were able to synthesize the following persona to help guide our designs.
Korry is a young engineer who enjoys shopping. He would love to do his shopping via their app to avoid long lines, purchase items without leaving the comfort of his home, and have access to sales without having to dig through a mess of unorganized clothes in-store.
Considering all of the behavioral patterns in the data that we collected through our research, the persona Korry Ponce was created. Korry helps us pinpoint the needs and goals of this user group.
After developing Korry’s persona, we were able to collectively use his goals, needs, and frustrations to construct a journey map to truly understand his shopping experience and understand his emotions during each task.
Now this brings us back to the thinking process. We begin thinking of a solution to solve for the problem. We did this by coming up with, “How Might We,” statements. We came up with 12 but we narrowed to down it two.
The sketch displays how we wanted our first wireframe to function and to help guide you through our task flow. Initially we wanted to incorporate some sort of AI functionality in the process, but after review we redeveloped the design.
As you can see on the right of the sketch is the mid-fidelity variation that I created on Figma. This was much more streamlined and effective. We had a total of 5 users tested, which were conducted over FaceTime. Two of the 5 users are avid Uniqlo shoppers.
With the given feedback we incorporated it into a high-fidelity prototype. The image to your left walks you through our redeveloped and redesigned task. Here is the list of the tasks the user would complete:
The Uniqlo app was a very exciting project. There was a major learning curve because this was my first case study. When I first started this project I had no idea what feature to work on or even know what needed refinement. As we did more research and dove into the ideation phase, I started to really understand how everything connects. It was difficult for me to generate ideas or understand why each section was important in creating a final product. As a general graphic designer, it was always just about the design aesthetic and not so much the functionality.
For the next steps of this project, I really want to dig deeper into the shopping experience. I want to expand my research on how I could better the filtering system and even apply some sort of real-time customer service to the app. These forms of applications could really contribute to a shoppers experience and possibly even quicken their odds of purchasing and item.