Role

Partnered with a small team of 2 other UX / UI design professionals, we assisted the team both off and on site with the redesign of important sections of the company webpage, introduced and implemented a design pattern library and developed new communication paths in support of an organization wide effort to provide customers with an omni-channel experience.

Methods

+ Whiteboards
+ Video Cameras
+ Evernote

+ Jira
+ Axure
+ Photoshop

Tools & Software

+ Setting Goals
+ Refining Objectives
+ Stakeholder Interviews
+ Establishing Audience
+ Personas

+ Scenarios
+ Sitemaps
+ Wireframes
+ Hi-Fi Designs
+ Usability Testing

Background

AMERICAN EAGLE OUTFITTERS is a leading global specialty retailer offering high-quality, on-trend clothing, accessories and personal care products at affordable prices under its AMERICAN EAGLE OUTFITTERS and Aerie brands.

The company operates more than 1,000 stores in the United States, Canada, Mexico, China, Hong Kong and the United Kingdom and ships to 81 countries worldwide through its websites. American Eagle Outfitters and Aerie merchandise is also available at 141 international stores operated by licensees in 22 countries.

Challenge

The main goal was to update the website for the holidays – the busiest season for retail stores both in-store and online. This would require new layout and design ideas for the homepage which would directly affect various other pages as well.

+ Add 10% more product on the Homepage
+ How to increase user sign up by 15%
+ Integrate sister brands on homepage
+ Increase online gift certificate sales
+ Improve OmniChannel experience

Approach

Process

One of the challenges with the project was the actual process – which wasa classic waterfall method. AEO is a large organization with an established process. That process was put in place in the 80’s and a lot has changed since then and waiting for approvals, meetings and change requests can take weeks.

Our team came up with new ways to keep things agile and moving while designs were waiting approval. We worked closely with engineering and content providers early on and kept in constant contact with each department while stakeholders reviewed. This allowed us to develop a few directions in anticipating the change requests.

Customers Behavior

As a team, we hit the streets and conducted user-research in stores around Pittsburgh, PA and San Francisco, CA. We isolated 20 customers in total into 3 different groups who shared similar influences and attitudes about shopping, clothing and technology.

Customers Behavior

As a team, we hit the streets and conducted user-research in stores around Pittsburgh, PA and San Francisco, CA. We isolated 20 customers in total into 3 different groups who shared similar influences and attitudes about shopping, clothing and technology.

Wireframes

Selecting the best ideas with the team, we moved into creating detailed wireframes and in some cases creating interactions within Axure.

Outcome

Selecting the best ideas with the team, we moved into creating detailed wireframes and in some cases creating interactions within Axure.

Reflection

The teamwork on the project was extraordinary — it had to be with such a large amount of personnel dependencies.

One of the challenges with the project was the actual process — which was a classic Waterfall Method. AEO is a large organization with an established process. That process was put in place in the 80’s and a lot has changed since then and waiting for approvals, meetings and change requests can take weeks.

Our team came up with new ways to keep things agile and moving while designs were waiting approval. We worked closely with engineering and content providers early on and kept in constant contact with each department while stakeholders reviewed. This allowed us to develop a few directions in anticipating the change requests.

Although all goals were met working within older waterfall paradigms added a layer of complexity that took time away from in-depth user testing before launch.

Area of Improvement

+ Project Management process
+ Content first design process — earlier in the process
+ Leveraging Pre-Made Web Patterns
+ Allow more time to validate ideas early on