SEP - DIC 2021
As part of a research project, I was assigned to develop a strategy to understand people's grocery shopping behavior better. The goal was to gather essential information about their preferences, requirements, frustrations, and desires regarding their grocery shopping experience. Additionally, I was responsible for creating a proposal to enhance the shopping experience based on the gathered insights.
Researcher, UI Designer
LET'S DISCUSS THE FUTURE OF GROCERIES
I conducted the research study for this academic assignment at The Giant Company.
Since 1981, The Giant Food Company has been one of the supermarket brands of the multinational Dutch food retailing company, Royal Ahold Corporation. Since then, the brand has exponentially evolved its business model. It is one of the leading food chain stores on the American east coast, with more than 150 stores and 35,000 employees.
It brings the service of pharmacies, gas stations, florists, delis, bakeries, and even organic products within its supermarkets.
The Giant Company is constantly investing in expanding market share by making alliances and acquiring new stores. It is also continually trying to innovate and provide value to the community; by developing social and environmentally-focused programs. For instance, at the beginning of the pandemic, The Giant Company implemented a successful strategic plan that met the intense consumers' demand and, as the market required, increased its investments in e-commerce, which helped the brand to continue leading its market segment.
The Giant Company has spent years creating a loyal customer base and is a brand that is continuously investing in implementing better practices to fulfill its customers' preferences.
UNDERSTANDING THE PROBLEM
Developing effective strategies to improve the grocery shopping experience requires understanding people's shopping behavior. By identifying their preferences, requirements, frustrations, and desires, proposals can be created that address their needs and concerns.
To start the research project, a literature review was conducted to explore what motivates people to choose a store for grocery shopping. Priorities such as convenience, quality, and price were identified, as well as factors like dietary preferences, lifestyle choices, and cultural background that may influence shopping behavior. Ethnographic fieldwork, interviews, and a workshop were then conducted to gather feedback from shoppers and gain insights into their behavior.
Based on the insights gathered, proposals were developed to enhance the grocery shopping experience. These proposals may include implementing new technologies, improving store layouts, or offering personalized recommendations based on customers' preferences.
Overall, actively listening to customers and deeply understanding their needs is crucial for improving the grocery shopping experience. By conducting research and developing tailored proposals, it's possible to enhance the shopping experience and meet customers' needs.
THE RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
I chose to apply the Double Diamond research theory to thoroughly understand individuals' behaviors and needs when shopping for groceries.
DISCOVER: GATHERING INSIDES
I engaged in an in-depth exploration to better understand the intricacies of in-store grocery shopping behaviors. Leveraging the power of Ethnographic Fieldwork, I immersed in real-world settings, keenly observing and noting essential activities influencing the grocery purchase journey. I developed a Probe Kit Prototype specifically to delve into shoppers' daily routines, illuminating their behavioral nuances, cognitive processes, and their emotional landscape pre and post-shopping. The investigation was further enriched by conducting targeted interviews, gleaning varied viewpoints from three individual grocery shoppers. To solidify the project foundation, I meticulously analyzed 30 critical articles through a Literature Review, ensuring my findings were rooted in established research.
What innovations would consumers most like to see in their shopping for groceries experience in the coming years?
How do shoppers envision the future of grocery shopping?
DEFINE: ANALYSIS AND SYNTHESIS
In the DEFINE PHASE, I performed DATA ANALYSIS to discern the primary issue. Insights from the discovery phase were then assessed to comprehend the current landscape and pinpoint enhancements in grocery shopping. This analysis elucidated shopper challenges, refining my understanding. The process of analysis and synthesis led to DATA TRANSFORMATION and INTERPRETATION.
To foster empathy within my project, I developed three personas inspired by the most prominent character traits observed in my participants.
Name: Sofia Shultz
Occupation: Interior Designer
Sofia's Shopping Habits:
• Sofia values hands-on interaction with groceries,
prioritizing the tangible experience of assessing
• Skeptical about online grocery shopping due to
concerns over product representation, she tailors her
choices based on immediate and future needs.
• While mainstream supermarkets often disappoint her
with their lack of unique products, she places utmost
importance on freshness, often preferring local or
• To enhance her shopping experience, Sofia greatly
appreciates insights and recommendations from
knowledgeable store staff.
Name: Sajay Signh
Occupation:Data IT specialist
Sajay's Shopping Habits:
• List Dependence: Sajay relies on handwritten
shopping lists for better recall but can sometimes
• Trusted Guidance: In the unfamiliar American
market, Sajay seeks advice. Recommendations
could be beneficial for him.
• Cultural Fusion: Transitioning from India to the USA,
He values clear product labeling for informed
• Culinary Challenges: Passionate about Indian
flavors, Sajay's limited cooking skills and a picky
child make meal preparations complex.
• Nutritional Guidance: Sajay aims to provide
nutritious meals, aligning his food preferences with
his child's health.
Name: Anna Simon
Occupation: Artist and Housewife
Anna's Shopping Habits:
• Anna's shopping is strategy-driven, with
brochures being her guiding compass. Their
contents dictate her weekly store visits.
• Promo Pursuer: Drawn to physical promotional
materials, Anna's shopping destinations hinge on
the best deals she finds in her weekly mailers.
• Vegetarian Explorer: Anna seeks unique
vegetarian products and recipes, though finding
on-sale options that match her family's taste can
• Deal vs. Brand: While Anna has brand favorites,
promotional offers often steer her final buying
Name: Olive Tomaso
Olive’s Shopping Habits:
• Efficient Routes: Olive tends to remember and
stick to the most efficient routes in a store to
• Limited Exploration: Rarely delves into new
aisles unless there's a specific need.
• List-Based Shopping: Always comes prepared
with a list to avoid unnecessary wandering.
• Loyalty to Brands: Prefers familiar brands,
prioritizing trust and consistency over novelty.
• Overwhelming Layouts: Finds mega-store
layouts to be confusing and overwhelming.
• Home Cooking Style: Values practicality when
Transfer the benefits Sofia enjoys in-store to her online shopping experience?
Enhance Sofia’s fresh produce shopping by increasing nutritional awareness and helping her recognize the health value of products?
Offer Sajay new recipe ideas and cooking methods that emphasize the advantages of our store products?
Assist Sajay in determining his grocery needs when he visits the store unplanned?
Guide Anna to the store that best matches her preferences and requirements?
Offer Anna a price comparison tool for her groceries?
Deliver the freshest groceries to Anna at the most affordable price?
Imp r o v e Ol i v e ' s s h o p p i n g experience by streamlining store navigation and speeding up product discovery?
Help Olive easily access product
ingredient information without him having to read every package?
DEVELOP PHASE: IDEATE
During the ideation phase, my primary focus was translating the needs and preferences of the user personas into solutions. Below, you'll find key insights and design recommendations tailored to each user persona: