Defining an actionable UX Strategy
Dermstore, a subsidiary of the Target Corporation and the second largest skin care and beauty e-commerce site in the United States, reached out to Spark DSG in early 2015 with the hopes that we could help them develop a digital strategy and experience framework that would support their evolving customer needs and business growth opportunities.
Spark DSG – many of us already Dermstore customers – eagerly accepted the opportunity to help Dermstore re-conceptualize and optimize their customer experience.
- In-Depth Site Audit
- Analytic Review
- Competitor Audit
- Usability Testing
- Taxonomy Design & Testing
- UX Strategy & Roadmap
- Learn More →
When Dermstore came to Spark, they already knew customers were struggling to find products due to confusing navigation, subpar functionality and inconsistencies between the mobile and desktop experiences. The Dermstore team challenged Spark to prioritize site experience issues and develop a plan to roll out experience improvements throughout the coming year. In addition, Dermstore wanted to leverage Spark’s e-commerce expertise to guide the selection and execution of features and functionality that would support lead generation, customer satisfaction and key commerce metrics such as UPT and AOV.
What We Did
Spark immediately approached the problem by immersing ourselves in the Dermstore brand and business in order to understand both historical and current online challenges, objectives, goals and customer types. Because we believe the most impactful results come when the client is a strategic contributor, our team worked closely with Dermstore stakeholders to leverage their customer and business insights. We ask a lot of questions. A lot of questions. And what Dermstore couldn’t answer, we turned to their customers to find the answer.
In-Depth Site Audit & Evaluation
Throughout the strategy engagement, Spark conducted a series of activities that allowed us to evaluate the Dermstore website both from our expert perspective and from the view of the customers. The Spark team did an in-depth site experience audit, documenting the number of templates, their uses, the hierarchal relationship between pages and ultimately reviewing analytics to see how different templates performed.
We then facilitated remote, unmoderated usability tests to see what problems customer’s ran into on the site. Participants were asked to find a specific product on the Dermstore website, then find the same product on a competitor website. This allowed them to compare and contrast the experiences so that Spark could glean insight into different behaviors and preferences.
Taxonomy Design & User Testing
Throughout our conversations with customers and the business, it became apparent that the product catalog taxonomy was a major roadblock for customers as they attempted to search for products on the Dermstore website. With over 20,000 products and 500 brands, the Dermstore product catalog could easily overwhelm new customers. Spark audited the taxonomy and filtering system, reviewed keyword search reports and re-designed the taxonomic structure. That structure was subsequently tested with Dermstore customers to see how well they could find products in the new taxonomic structure. Insights were used to further refine the taxonomy and then design the supporting menu systems.
Final UX Strategy & Roadmap
Spark synthesized the data and insights from all of our activities into a holistic UX Strategy which included prioritized, detailed recommendations and sketch concepts that would serve as a blueprint from which to move forward. Spark identitied 2 key phases as part of the Dermstore UX Strategy. The first was to optimize the baseline experience in order to solve known usability issues and make it easier to find and purchase products. The second phase was centered on the development of new features and functionality that would extend Dermstore’s competitive advantages and create an enhanced experience that would anticipate the needs of different customer groups.
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