Case Study: CoreCommerce
Making the process of managing shipping and payment settings easier for eCommerce merchants.
Managing an eCommerce store is a complex job, involving an intricate balance of a number of different tasks, from managing inventory to setting up coupon schedules, to configuring shipping and payment settings for a store.
This last task – shipping and payment setup – is particularly difficult, due to the vast nature of scenarios encountered by eCommerce merchants. CoreCommerce engaged us to help them think through how to make this easier for their customers, in order to help reduce support calls and engender positive feelings around their software.
The challenge was presented to us in two parts: make it easier for merchants to set up their shipping options (options that a merchant offers to their customers – a task that represented almost 30% of monthly support calls) and make it easier for merchants to set up their payment options.
We began with research. It was important that we understand how typical merchants think and talk about shipping and payment in the context of their stores, regardless of software. This entailed spending three weeks interviewing and observing a variety of merchants in person, developing a more clear understanding of how they work, and where their needs lie.
This research led us to several design principles that led our work throughout the process, under our overarching theme of “Elegant Complexity”:
- Make complexity a choice
- Reduce management overhead
- Provide guidance
- Augment the business of eCommerce
We worked internally to pull apart the shipping and payment processes, sketching and talking through how the parts of an eCommerce operation work together to provide a logistics solution. This sketching and synthesis allowed us to develop a wider view of the shipping and payment landscape, which we could lay atop our field research and use to generate insights for design solutions.
These insights led us into an intense, 8-week period of iteration where we sketched and prototyped new design solutions to the interfaces, leading to not only a redesign of the screens, but a complete rethinking of how a merchant interacts with and manages their shipping options from a systems-level view.
Our work culminated in a large set of documentation that specified a full redesign for both the shipping and payment modules of the software. In addition to redesigned screens, we also worked to develop a wizard interface for easy setup by first-time users, and configuration flows that only presented users with the right amount of complexity appropriate for their usage.
The resulting interface is a much more simple and understandable one, helping merchants spend more time running their store, not configuring options.