Project Type
Self-initiated Team Project using Agile/Scrum Project Management Methodology

Researcher, UX/UI Designer 

Figma, Quip, Slack, Visual Studio, GitHub, Google Docs, Google Sheets

2 weeks
As a team of 4 UX / UI designers, we reimagined ways in which brick and mortar independent clothing retailers and their customers could safely and effectively connect during the COVID-19 shelter-in-place. Retailers needed a way to limit the amount of customers coming into their shops at any given time, while making sure sales remained up. 
We considered a hybrid process would likely become the new norm post-pandemic, so this endeavor would be worthwhile in solving for the frustrations of both retailers as well as their customers. 
The following case study shows our design thinking process and how we arrived at the creation of the Seamless app, our Shopify integration solution. Seamless allows retail shop owners to manage and prepare for in person and remote appointments with shoppers on one end of the platform, while allowing customers on the other end to choose time and day for their appointments, scan their exact body measurements using smartphone cameras, and prep for upcoming appointments by adding items from a shop’s online store to a personal virtual fitting room.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​
The Problem
Small apparel retailers are struggling to keep their business running and adapt to changing customer needs and safety concerns amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Problem Statement
How might we enable apparel boutique owners to seamlessly provide a combination of safe in-store and meaningful online interactions with customers so that they can continue generating revenue measured by an increase in sales, reduction in return rate and increased customer satisfaction?​​​​​​​

The Solution
Seamless is a Shopify integration that store owners can add to their website to connect the in-store and online shopping experiences. 

How It Works
- Add the Seamless integration to your Shopify store
- Customers can book virtual or in-store appointments from your website. They can also add items to try-on during their appointment
- View and manage your appointments on the backend and review your analytics
In order to empathize with our target demographic, we created proto-personas. Through the research phase, we were able to refine the user personas to the following two user personas. 
User Persona 1: Natasha Lewis, Store Owner 
Age:   43
Location:   Burlingame, California
Occupation:   Owns a local clothing boutique
Education:   Bachelor’s Degree
Relationship Status:   Married
About:   Loves to travel (even when it’s for work), yoga, spending time with her son, and connecting with other small business owners
Needs/Goals:   Forced to close her brick and mortar location due to COVID, is trying to find ways to keep business going and still have her customer support
Painpoints:   Relies heavily on in-store shoppers for revenue, doesn’t have a strong online presence. Eager to re-open her store, but want to make sure her employees and customers are safe
Brands:   Paper Source, Pinterest, prAna, Philz Coffee, Chaser, Capri Blue
User Persona 2: Valerie Amato, Shopper
Age:   32
Location:   Los Gatos, California
Occupation:   Paralegal
Education:   Bachelor’s Degree
Relationship Status:   Engaged
About:  Ambitious, likes corgis, plays tennis, has a fashion blog, goes to farmer's markets 
Needs/Goals:   Prefers shopping at local boutiques, insists on keeping her wardrobe fresh 
Painpoints:   Hard for her to find unique clothing, must dress professionally while expressing her personal style 
Brands:   Shop Neighborhood, Wilson, White House Black Market 

To further empathize with retailers, we created a storyboard from the perspective of a shop owner. This was an important step in highlighting how Seamless might help business stay consistent or pick back up during shelter-in-place. 
Our team sought to learn more about potential Seamless users, keeping in mind the experiences of both the retailer and their customers. We conducted four interviews: three with customers, and 1 with a clothing store employee.  We also launched a survey for more data points.  
We wanted to know about shopping habits, shopping conventions and experiences pre-pandemic, and their pain points in an ever changing landscape to suss out and address the specific painpoints of both personas. 
The next steps were done in a collaborative manner. First was organizing our data into categories through affinity mapping. Next, we used an I Like, I Want, I Wish exercise to help narrow down our collective understanding of the users needs. Finally, we used a feature prioritization matrix to prioritize what we would work on in the problem space. 
This part of the exercise helped determine the following priorities: 

1. Flexibility on styling appointments and shopping curbside
2. Accurate sizing for customers
3. A convenient way to input body measurements for correct fit
4. More information on products available
Our survey results confirmed our interview data and validated our team's priorities. Most people like shopping in person and painpoints surrounding online shopping deal with being unable to interact with products and being unsure of what will fit. 
The competitive analysis we performed included four companies with an online presence.  Below is a summary  of each company's description, their strengths, and their weaknesses. This step helped our team strategically position Seamless where there was a need. 
​​​​​​​During our interviews and surveys, we discovered that people have switched to online shopping during this Covid-19 pandemic despite their preference of shopping in person before the pandemic.

Therefore, we believe that offering helpful online shopping experiences would ease the online shopping concerns of users.

We might do this by creating an online platform that provides a complementary experience to shoppers and small apparel boutique owners. Doing this will allow our product to help maintain the relationship between shopper and owners in a safe, virtual way.
​​​​​​​Seamless is a Shopify integration that store owners can add to their website to connect the in-store and online shopping experiences.

How It Works:
- Retailers add the Seamless integration to their Shopify store
- Customers can book virtual or in-store appointments from your website. They can also add items to try-on during their appointment
- View and manage your appointments on the backend and review your analytics
Low-Fidelity Wireframes focused most on effective userflow, paying attention to being as concise with steps as possible to avoid user overwhelm.
Mid-fidelity wireframes included refining the UI by determining our app's aesthetics. We chose colors, fonts, and button styles, which can be seen in the UI Style Guide section as well.  
Creating and maintaining a UI Style Tile is a practice that helps keep a brand's identity consistent. For Seamless' brand identity, we wanted to present a stylish, modern, and minimalistic aesthetic.  
The final prototype included a customer appointment userflow for mobile and desktop. We also created a store owner interface to demonstrate the retailer's side from using Seamless. 
To accompany the prototype, we also built a website using bootstrap to advertise Seamless' features and benefits to potential retailers in need of attracting more customers. 
To view the Seamless prototype in action from a customer's mobile perspective, click on this video.

After completing the two week project, our team came up with the following takeaways for future reiterations:
- Offer several branding options that stores can choose from
- Allow shoppers to view their account info, appointment history, sizing info, etc
- Build out the body scanning user flow and the virtual appointment flow
- Add more options for sizing (men’s, petite/tall, plus, shoe widths, etc)