The UX Strategy
After speaking with stakeholders and assessing the current site, I developed the UX strategy that would serve as design tenets for the entire process.
Concepts & Feature Ideas
To achieve the 5 goals stated above, my team and I pinpointed what specific items we'd bring to the new site. The concepts and features spanned from technical web functionality to social shopping tools.
Social Shopping: Finding Balance
My team and I were really excited about how we could infuse social aspects into the user's browsing experience. At the time, logging in via Facebook was common, but few commerce sites capitalized on the possibilities. We wanted to use one's social graph to tailor and benefit their shopping experience.
We considered how much social would play a part in the site design. Some of the early wireframes (seen below) dedicated half the screen to the "social view" with flexibility to expand it to a full view.
I quickly found that we needed to handle the social functionality more delicately. We had established how it would work: It was the ability for a logged in user to see the shopping activity of her Facebook friends (what they had liked, purchased, viewed and saved). It was a powerful tool, but not for everyone.
We ended up incorporating social by having it be a chosen view of page contents, opposed to the default. Docked to the bottom of every page was a horizontal bar that housed a few different viewing options, social being one of them.
Oh boy, does Shopstyle have a lot of filtering capabilities!
The project also called for assisting them redesigning their existing filtering bar, while adding new filtering options.
My team and I tested out multiple ways we could show each of the filters. I wanted to make it as lightweight as possible, which was a challenge due to the depth of some of the filter options (Brands, for example had so many to choose from).
The final result was the left aligned, docked filter bar seen here.
The End Result
The result was a design that incorporated a new Kids category, and the functionality of social shopping and filtering. The client was ecstatic with our work. Since this project in 2012, the client has reached out multiple times for additional project work. It's always a pleasure working with them.