USER RESEARCH       DISCOVERY       UX

Connect online shoppers live with associates in-store

This project is an important part of the Hero app, connecting shoppers using WhatsApp and SMS to associates in-store. Making e-commerce with human connection reaching millions of shoppers.

The project aimed to create a scalable and consistency digital language, during their brand refresh and tone of voice updates

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Project overview

What the expectations to accomplish.

Black Book allows you to stay in touch with customers, whether you meet them in-store or online through Hero. When you contact the customers you have added to your Black Book, they will receive your messages by SMS text or WhatsApp.

Through Black Book, associates can reach out to customers whenever is convenient. Black Book enables communication with customers when they are not on the retailers' website. This project was to improve this communication channel, to understand how competitors do clienteling and how as Hero we can make this communication 

Why this project is important?

1:1 personalised attention

Ensure that returning customers get the personalized attention they need with specific associates. Returning customers spend 67% more than first time buyers.

Omnichannel communication

Multichannel approach to sales that seeks to provide customers with a seamless shopping experience using any communication channel.

WhatsApp integration

Using a business WhatsApp API to achieve a clientelling solution, creating a UX journey were the 24 hours limitations do not affect communication.

Increase engagement

Designing scenarios where associates feel empowered to contact shoppers at the right time with purpose. Using data to display shopper beahviour.

Initial research

What the users say

And why it's relevant.

Based on several businesses assumptions, research was necessary to: map opportunities, validate assumptions to reduce internal BIAS, understand current behaviours using data reports, explore new insights and understand pain points. 

Exercises used to research: internal interviews with the support team, online surveys to our global retailers, interview face to face with associates in-store.

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Competitor analysis

Focusing on clienteling and communication channels, 8 competitors were selected for this exercise.

Evaluating positives and negatives os all competitors we were able to learn what would be good for our associates and shoppers.

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User research

Associates interview

Visiting retailers to interview associates was necessary to understand real frustrations, validate business needs and to gather new insights for features.

Interview done with 6 associates, with a set of questions, using probing questions to investigate further.

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Insight collection

Dot voting and feature prioritization

First post its session was to understand the associate's background, general behaviours and feelings.

Using affinity mapping techniques grouped by possible solutions for the product. Categories found: Automation, Acquisition, Organization, Awareness, Channels and Other. Dot voting session to prioritize what features needed to be designed.

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MVP

Designing the minimal solution

Using the idea of MVP to deliver the minimum product as fast as possible to learn more and iterate later.

This approach of delivery fast and learn, was used as we found many features that would impact how BlackBook worked. Launching features in stages we reduce user's friction to learn all over again how to use BlackBook, and we learn every week which features were impacting and generating results with users.

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What's next

Learnings and limitations

WhatsApp integration is an ongoing challenge, as Hero, we need a clienteling functionality were associates can chat with shoppers anytime, which is an expected behaviour. 

But, limitations of both ways communication exists: as an associate you cannot send a message to shoppers after a 24 hours window has passed, associates can only use of templated messages trying to get users to respond and open another 24 hours communication window. The main challenge now is to write a template message that triggers the shoppers to reply, we are testing 12 messages, we need to select 3 only as per WhatsApp guidelines. Product presentation available here.

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What I've learned?

Reflecting back on the project.

Sometimes projects are bigger than what's in the briefing, as soon as user research starts, new insights appears and new features are needed to solve problems.

Also, when integrations with third parties happen, everything can change at any second, limitations that change user journeys and business needs will need to be revisited.

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