Project in UXD Graduate Studio ​

Marsh Supermarkets

Improving customer experience and drawing business back to Marsh Supermarkets by having a Kid's Club.

Marsh Supermarkets is a grocery store chain native to Indiana which bankruptcy in 2017. Although Marsh had tried to keep pace with competitors like Walmart and Kroger by integrating new technologies, to no avail.

We have seen that merely adding technology does not address the problem. Hence, we aimed to find gaps in the current market, and use technology to enhance Marsh’s ability to fill them. Suppose Marsh still exist, our goal is to help draw business back to Marsh Supermarkets, in an attempt to preserve a historical local business.​

 

To accomplish this, we proposed creating a Kid’s Club, which integrates a number of common grocery-store technologies to engage children and their families in daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly events.

Role

UX Researcher

UX Designer​

Timeline

2018/9 ~ 2018/10 

Team Member

Alyse Marie Allred

Apurva Nagarajan

Myeonghan Ryu

 

Challenge

"How can we use technology to improve the customer experience in a way that it draws business back to Marsh Supermarkets?"

 

User Research

SWOT Analysis:

To help us understand and focus on strengths, minimize threats, and take the greatest possible advantage of opportunities available to Marsh, we have laid out SWOT analysis.

As most grocery stores lack the community aspect, concentrating on this aspect can be promising.

Marsh

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Interview & observation :

As Marsh business model is “Business to Customer”, we carried out primary and secondary research to find out what can be a potential improvement in the grocery shopping experience

 

We divided consumers who go to the grocery store into four categories- family, elderly, disabled, and college student.

Customer

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Response

User Research

SWOT Analysis:

 

To help us understand and focus on strengths, minimize threats, and take the greatest possible advantage of opportunities available to Marsh, we have laid out a SWOT analysis.

 

 

As most grocery stores lack the community aspect, concentrating on this aspect might be promising.

Marsh

swot.png

Interview & Observation :

 

As Marsh business model is “Business to Customer”, we carried out primary and secondary research to find out what can be a potential improvement in the grocery shopping experience

 

We divided consumers who go to the grocery store into four categories- family, elderly, disabled, and college student.

Customer

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Affinity

Diagram

In order to narrow it down and decide our target audience, we used affinity diagramming to quickly brainstorm responses and to pull ideas from each other.

 

We decided to focus on the family group because family is the largest consumer group. Also, the family group generally cover the problems of other groups.

 

We then reorganized the affinity diagram by taking the family as our target audience. We found that "Not family friendly" is our first priority.

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Annotated

Portfolio

We researched various stores and events that have incorporated social aspect into their design and the best practices.

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Response

From our comparative research, we found that we can’t achieve family friendly by only improving the facilities which is one of the reasons why Marsh failed.

 

There are so many bigger companies and online stores competing with Marsh. There is no chance for us to win if we want to focus only on convenience and effectiveness.

We decided to focus on the social value of the grocery store, trying to enhance Marsh’s shopping experience and community status by building a stronger connection with customers.

Design Process

1. Persona

We created three Personas based on previous research. A pregnant young mother, Rachael, who is currently working towards her Ph.D. Rachel's four years old daughter, Ema. Besides, we created a Marsh Persona to build a human connection and community aspect to it. ​

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2. Scenario & Task Flow & User Journey Map

We created these to understand how the user thinks and feels throughout the grocery shopping experience.

 

We noticed that the hardest part is to let Ema really engaged in the shopping wherein as a child she was not allowed to explore the supermarket the way she wants. Hence, our mission is not only taking the burden off of Rachael to entertain her energetic four-year-old, but to engage Ema in a fun and meaningful way.

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3. Ideation and Sketches

We brainstormed and sketched out our idea. Then, we decided to make a Kid's Club since this solution intersects with many other ideas as well as providing a better shopping experience without separating kids from their parents.

 

Moreover, we can deploy this kids club idea by a lower number of cost and only using the existing technology, such as magnetic card readers.

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4. Usability testing

 

(1) Bodystorming

First, we did a bodystorming to experience our design from our targeted grocery shopper's perspective.

 

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(2) Storyboard

Second, we used a storyboard to help us refine our design. We brought the persona and scenario we did before into our design solution.

 

 

 

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(3) Cognitive Walkthrough

Finally, our final usability test was a cognitive walkthrough conducted at the West Lafayette Public Library, with a mother of three from China, as well as her nine and six-year-old sons.

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Key insights:

 

  • Checkpoint Locations: The checkpoints should be located carefully considering the motivation of kids.

  • Kids Interest: We should carefully decide what we give for them reflecting on their interest, as well as considering the connection with the promotion of goods in the store.

  • Card Swipe: Kids try to swipe the card repetitively for the feel of amusement by nature. We should consider how to have the kids know to swipe the card only once per day. 

  • Kids Safety: If kids run around the store to get to the points, it can lead to injuries, an inconvenience of other customers and also they can be lost in the grocery store.

  • Parents' Link: Perhaps in rewarding the kid's points based on how much their parents spend.

  • Social Experience: Many people consider the grocery store experience as much a social experience as functional.

 
 

Outcome

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Membership Card

The Marsh Kid’s Club Membership Card is a child’s pass to all sorts of fun, family-centered treats and activities integrated into their parent's regular shopping experience! And, just like the regular Rewards Card, joining is completely free! The card is outfitted with both an electronic strip and a chip, which can be run and read just like the regular Rewards Cards!

Qualifications:

  • Open to all children ages 2-12

  • Must be linked to their guardian’s active Marsh Reward Card

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Indoor - Checkpoint

  

1. Free kid's balloon      

2. Free fruit       

3. Cookie of the day      

4. Special sample       

5. Hand stamp       

6. Kid's shop

Besides, every quarter, all Kid’s Club Members and their parents are invited to attend a family-oriented event. For example, seasonal events, coloring contests, craft booths, and back-to-school activities.

 

Reflection

We broke down our traditional thinking that we could only improve interaction by deploying new equipment or technology innovation. Instead, we viewed this problem from the point of social value, using the power of user center design to build a strong connection between customers and Marsh. This reflects the interdisciplinary and extensive nature of UX, we are not just designing a product, but designing an experience.