To redesign Party City's online and eCommerce platform to increase user engagement, attract more online traffic, generate higher online sales, while reducing visitor bounce rate.
Party City's online platform features a spectacular range of product category and item selections but it lacks an effective information architecture needed to facilitate a fun and delightful browsing experience.
To reorganize Party City's information architecture, edit the over-saturation of UI visual elements, whilst implementing a delightful and smart browsing system that helps customer efficiently navigate and arrive at their product with minimum hassle.
Although this was an individual project, i did collaborate and conduct user research with business stakeholders and online customers across multiple demographics. I oversaw the entire UX/UI process from research, data gathering, synthesis, iteration, wire-framing, usability testing, to final prototyping.
Project Duration: 2 weeks I Tools: Omnigraffle - Photoshop
USER RESEARCH 1 - UNDERSTANDING BUSINESS NEEDS
After conducting stakeholder interviews, we evaluated the primary concerns and objectives regarding user engagement. They have recently experienced a high volume of visitor bounce rate and decline in sales - both clear indicators of problems with user experience. From our discussion, we were able to brainstorm on the following initial concepts:
USER REARCH 2 - UNDERSTANDING USER NEEDS
Next, I conduct user interviews with a few friends with varying online shopping habits:
User 1 - Shopped at Party City's offline store. User 2 - Regular online shopper of partycity.com. User 3 - Avid online shopper but never shopped at partycity.com. I tasked them with browsing and purchasing a Halloween costume and afterwards asked them about their overall experience:
Based on user feedback, the key pain points of partycity.com are as follow:
The key to a satisfying browsing experience is the ability to lead users to their desired destination efficiently, and accurately. To pin point the main structural issues of partycity.com, I conducted a heuristic analysis on a regular browsing task flow and evaluated the aspects of learnability, efficiency, memorability, error management and satisfaction.
The key structural pain points stem from the navigation menu, information hierarchy, visual editing and interface design as observed below:
OBJECTIVE 1 - STREAMLINED NAVIGATION
From our card-sorting, users primarily associate their searches with product categories ie. costumes, invitations etc. From there they would narrow their search down by style or context ie. theme, occasion etc. Also, incorporating a 'Feature' and 'Most Popular' category has proven to generate further interest. Based on the company's 2014 sales report, Halloween and Birthdays are the most lucrative and popular categories in their online platform. Hence I displayed them prominently in the main navigation.
New navigation flow :
OBJECTIVE 2 - DECLUTTER (Negative Space Is Good)
As mentioned in an article published by Fast.Co Design: Why White Space Is Crucial To UX Design. White space, when used methodically helps in: 1) Improving Comprehension 2) Clarify Relationships 3) Attract Attention. With this in mind, I decided to explore some of the most popular, inventory based eCommerce platforms such as potterybarn.com, williams-sonoma.com, and amazon.com and review their UI.
We need to create high online engagement by merging usability with a delightful and dynamic experience through service features and visual design. Here's a mood board that encapsulates the whimsical, lively and exhilarating spirit Party City needs to communicate in it's online experience.
MAPPING OUT NEW FEATURES
I mapped out possible web features that could be implemented in elevating user engagement.
CREATING THE TASK FLOW - HAPPY PATH
Revised browsing task flow:
I also incorporated a few personalized service features, that add value and enhance customer engagement:
Below are the first series of iteration created for the main user task-flow from browsing to check out.
Finally distilling all my research findings and design thinking into a high fidelity wireframe.
To better understand the design flow and task at hand, I have added commentaries that will guide viewers through the process and keep them informed each step of the way.
A final interactive mock up of the new platform.