- Interaction DesignConceptingContent StrategyWireframingMotion
Amazon's 19+ sites to inform and onboard users to sell their own products on the site were sprawling and confusing. Even with all these sites, they failed to address top user questions and drove potential sellers elsewhere for their information. With that in mind, how could we distill many pages into a single source of truth for "How to get started selling on Amazon"?
No single entry point to answer all questions for new sellers and get them started selling on Amazon.
• Discover prospective seller needs
• Align Amazon internal teams involved
• Audit competitors
• Generate UX Framework
• Concept + Test
• Visual Design
• Motion Studies
Ben Shown - Design Director
Josh Klekamp - Visual Design
Siri Mehus - Research Director
Holly Prouty - UX Research
Brent Summers - Engineering Director
Eric Gomez - Engineering
Jake Lunde - UX + Motion Design
Stakeholder interviews, competitive audit, workshop facilitation, consulting & design strategy, content strategy, concepting, wireframing, motion design
In my portion of research, I conducted interviews with an extended client group of PMs, researchers, engineers and executives to steer our research, align on client expectations, understand challenges and define success.
This set of 18 interviewees was particularly broad, so synthesizing their thoughts into a single document proved difficult, and ultimately critical to get such a dispersed set of stakeholders aligned.
Reinforcing project scope was particularly challenging as well. In the framework above I sought to show the full scale of elements included in full seller onboarding, and our purview for this project.
We learned that:
• There’s a lot of work to be done, let's prioritize and agree on scope.
• Potential sellers are looking for relevant situation-specific information.
• The organizational silos that drove the creation of 19+ ingress points need to be broken down for this effort.
• Information architecture will be a critical part of this reorganization.
Walking away from my interviews with a refined set of internal sites and inspirational competitors, I collected and identified a set of competitors across a number of important metrics to guide us into our design work. I focused on:
• Inspirational Content
• Educational Content
• Visual Design
• Selling Resources
• Ease of Use
• Cross-Device Experience
We learned that:
• Shopify has the best-in-class seller onboarding.
• Competitors to which they pointed us were falling short in many areas.
• Audience and relevant content are most important.
Foundational User Research
Siri and Holly led our 10 foundational user research sessions of potential sellers alongside my stakeholder interviews. Holly, having a design background, synthesized her research report into several design deliverables to communicate user needs to start selling: a journey map, mental model, and How Might We statements derived from insights to drive design ideas.
We learned that users need Amazon to help them:
• Build confidence
• Gauge risk/reward
• Understand the numbers, logistics, and how it works
• Apply the numbers
• Create a business case
In addition to attending sessions and listening to users, Holly’s artifacts helped guide us toward concepting areas.
Taking what we had learned so far, we continued to seek alignment and direction with the client and have some fun in an all-day design workshop. Activities included:
• Research Report Readout
• Speak Your Mind
• How Might We’s
• Inspirational Images
• Several success metrics
• Challenges to expect
• Concept areas and our clients initial ideas
• Client preferences and design direction
In an effort to try and organize the content on each of the existing sites based on our research, I took several approaches at the larger content areas translated into a site map.
The client chose to go with our recommendation of “Brain on Business”, as it’s still visible on the sell.amazon.com site today.
A project risk around content began to reveal itself at this point, raising concerns about the specifics to be designed over this short-term project.
After our workshop, I led a concept card session internally to jump start our design ideas around specific challenges we knew we would need to address.
After affinitizing those concepts into their respective groups, we came away with several great signature experiences on which to ideate:
• Quizzes to Customize
• Interactive Tables
• Overview Estimator
• Checklist Timeline
• Collapsible Content
Content Site Map
At this point in the project, we were in desperate need of specific content to begin to wireframe on pages. At the same time, the number of pages remained too large for us to complete in time.
In order to elicit a reaction from the client, I created a massive content site map including page building blocks: components, content blocks, content groups, and pages. I incorporated the signature experiences to indicate where they could expect them to appear.
Using this, our client was finally able to understand the correct depth of content we needed to fill each of the containers and continue the design work. I closely tied it to the IA and navigation explorations seen below.
As the content site map started to be filled in, we set our sights set on concept testing and wireframing full pages & individual components.
The content just continued piling onto the page. Several patterns were required to organize the information, and also make it accessible through hover states, collapsible information panes and more.
Based on the multiple tiers of information based on user self-selection, we played with many controls to make this clear and easy for users to understand.
As we landed on refined IA, content and wireframes, the surest way to the “right” answer was to put these in front of users.
With our timeline crunched and design coming together only days before concept testing, I worked with our researcher to land on a set of targets to ensure we stayed focused on our users’ needs through the design phase.
To achieve some of the specific tests I created a first-of-its-kind Figma prototype featuring navigation based on the variations of concepts users sorted into based on their domain and other factors.
As you can see our visual design track merged with UX quite quickly as these pages took shape thanks to the back and forth I had with designer Josh Klekamp, we created a number of options of all components across the board.
• Sub navigation is important for users to adequately find individual elements
• User preference for navigation labels
• User expectations for critical CTAs
• Our calculator experience was a “wow moment”
• Our selling plans table was clear and helpful
• Preferences on visual design direction
As the testing ran up to the end of our project, we incorporated as many changes as possible into our final designs.
To help the clients and engineering team best understand our intent for several pages and their functionality, I created interactive prototypes inside of Flinto:
After we had wrapped, our client had some great feedback for us—
"Feedback has been super positive so far.
The new site outperformed our primary usability benchmark: 69.2% vs. 30.0% of participants said the website made them feel 'confident' or 'very confident' that they have the information needed in order to proceed with selling on Amazon.
Huge improvement! Internal reception is likewise enthusiastic. After reviewing the website just prior to launch, our VP said, 'I think the design and content work you have done is amazing!'"
This project allowed the Amazon team to fully understand the correct user needs to address, content to be curated, visual style and interaction patterns to use to help sellers get started selling on Amazon.
The site continues to be the number one search result for
“How to Sell on Amazon”.