Redesigning Subscription for Groceries App

Background

Introduction

Due to the pandemic, there has been a high rise in ordering groceries online but users generally don’t remember all of the items available at their residence. Design a subscription model for a popular grocery delivery app to keep track of the regular items they might want so that it becomes easier for the user to place an order in one go with all the necessary items.

Plan of Action

Plan of action

Initial Hypothesis

Hypothesis

  1. The main pain point is that people forget things and in a pandemic, it is difficult to make multiple rounds to the market. Here’s why:
    a) It’s unsafe for them as well as others if they go out again and again.
    b) Earlier people used to bring small things while returning from work. But while working from home, it’s difficult to make multiple rounds of the market.
  2. The frequency of such orders decreases when there are not many delivery agents. Hence increasing the need for accurate online shopping.
  3. The reason why some people don’t like to order online is the hesitation of not getting the right product. They fear they might receive duplicate or damaged products.
  4. People will prefer an online list of items from the app so that they can claim for repayment if they receive any damaged goods.
  5. Many crucial items are missed while shopping online possibly due to the following reasons-
    a) Missing of important stuff takes place when users don’t have a prior list in hand.
    b) Unavailability of the products in the online stores prompts users to buy other unnecessary items due to the fear of missing out.
    c) Another reason can be loss of memory.
  6. While ordering online, people get distracted and order advertised luxuries and forget to order the basic needs.
  7. Some users still do not prefer ordering online because they fear the quality of the packaging and handling of the items.

Gaps to be researched

  1. What are the reasons for missing out on items while shopping for groceries?
  2. How often do they prefer to buy groceries? Frequency of the usage of the app?
  3. How often do people stick to a budget and are they okay with it?
  4. What do they prefer, quality or quantity? How do they do quality checks?
  5. Are they okay with the increased budget due to online shopping?
  6. The safety factor in ordering online
  7. People who don’t prefer to go to online stores, what is bothering them? How non-tech savvy people are dealing with the need of ordering online?
  8. What do we understand by the subscription model?

Secondary Research: Top Insights

A look at the industry

  • According to private estimates, the Indian online grocery sector is expected to reach $20–25 billion by 2025 online grocery sales in 2020, competition significantly increased between online retailers, who sought to distinguish themselves through discount/loyalty programs, faster deliveries (including same-day deliveries in select cities), easy returns policy, free/low-cost deliveries, ease of payment, cashback offers, and safety consumers to purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, dairy, and gourmet foods online.
  • The industry is expected to be driven by the consumers who stay in Tier-I cities, such as Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai, and Delhi, who are more adaptable to online shopping due to the availability of high-speed internet, better adaptability to mobile devices, and the logistical simplicity.
  • Notably, leading players in the grocery delivery market — BigBasket and Grofers — have been able to drive subscription adoption rapidly in less than 15 months of launch on average.

Customers’ opinion

  • Research suggested that 92% of people coming up without buying what they went for. Half of them do this on a regular basis.
  • A study by LocalCircles found that 80% of people ordered groceries online for convenience and not price.
  • Lockdown taught people a lesson. Earlier they used to buy groceries every 3 months and didn’t mind if some items were missing. But now they order twice a month. Also, their bill has reached 8–10 K from 4–5 K. Another person accepted that If they used to order groceries for Rs550, they now order for about Rs1,550. Another research suggested that shoppers spent 44% more per transaction and purchased more items online versus in stores, researchers also found.
  • During desk research, we encountered two types of people.
    1. One who started stocking up the groceries: “People are trying to avoid a situation where their pantry go out of stock.” Amidst the pandemic, consumers feared that they could face lockdown regulations at any point in time, therefore they have been stocking up on these essentials.”
    2. Second who tried to save money so that they can save it for medical emergencies:
  • A research report suggests-
    1.
    28% of the respondents strongly agree that there is a lack of product information.
    2.
    26% of the respondents agree that they get something than what they have ordered.
    3. 31% of the respondents strongly agree that there is an absence of personal quality check.
    4.
    37% of the respondents agree that they face difficulties in returning the products
    5. 38% of respondents cannot define hidden charges as the problem of online grocery purchase
    6. 31% of respondents stated with confidence that there will be a delay in delivery.
    7.
    34% of the respondents strongly agree that there is a lack of security in the process of online grocery purchase.
  • According to a Power Reviews survey, 59% of consumers named saving time as their primary reason for shopping online.
  • 49% of consumers named personal safety as their primary reason for shopping online.
  • When shopping in person, adults often bring along their children or other family members, who may ask for unhealthy candy and snacks.
  • “People fail to take these factors into account when predicting their memory. As a result, they do not take appropriate actions to prevent forgetting such as using a shopping list.”
  • “Recent research shows that customers often don’t walk all the way down the aisles in a grocery store. Not many people visit the middle of the aisle. So, when supermarkets place frequently bought items in the middle of the aisle and infrequently bought items at the ends, customers will actually see the items they infrequently buy when they walk to the items they frequently buy.” Placing the most purchased products in the most accessible places.
  • Lower-income groups also face additional obstacles with online shopping that could detract them from using the services.

Subscription plans & related experiences

  • People are conscious of luxurious items due to financial instability during a pandemic and staying at home has meant larger purchase sizes. They are driven even more strongly by factors such as range, ease, speed, and convenience.
  • People are conscious of luxurious items due to financial instability during a pandemic and staying at home has meant larger purchase sizes. So, they are driven even more strongly by factors such as range, ease, speed, and convenience.
  • Subscription customers spend more customers to seek more variety and increase their basket size but do not reduce their order frequency.
  • Free delivery has a positive impact on customer behaviour.
  • Rapid subscription adoptions are affordable pricing and a variety of benefits ranging from price savings via cash backs and discounts. Users also get free/priority delivery with the subscription plans.
  • “As it can be very time-consuming to let customers go through all the grocery items in a virtual aisle, it helps to have a smart category structure that allows customers to easily skip whole categories, such as the pets section, or parts of categories such as sodas or light beers. It also helps if certain categories are clustered, like breakfast cereals and milk and yoghurt.” Emphasizing the Preferred category of the customers.
  • The report emphasized that the key drivers of rapid subscription adoption are affordable pricing and a variety of benefits ranging from price savings via cash backs and discounts. Users also get free/priority delivery with the subscription plans.
  • We found that people are more likely to forget the items they infrequently buy when using the memory-based search, but not when using the stimulus-based search. In fact, when using the stimulus-based search, people are sometimes even better able to remember the items they infrequently buy.” Example: Looking at the suggestion, one person thinks that he/she should buy that too.

User Interviews: Top Insights

Recruitment Criteria And The Process

  1. Age 23–30 Bachelors and Tech Savvy People
  2. Age 30–45 Married people with a proper living. The millennial generation. As it has experience of both traditional shopping and online shopping
  3. The Age group of 45 and above — Non-tech savvy people.

Interview Summary

  1. Out of my interviewees, the first interviewee was quite happy with her arrangement of online grocery delivery. Being a Gen Z, she was very comfortable placing online orders. She didn’t have many pain points, but she did tell what she likes in current online grocery delivery services. She told me that she loves the doorstep delivery system and the flexibility of cancelling orders anytime. She also told me that the quality of online delivered groceries is not good in her hometown which is a small town.
  2. Another user a homemaker in her 30s mentioned her fear of the bad quality of products and poor handling of them. Another problem she faced was the unavailability of the products online. Due to such reasons, she prefers to shop offline.
  3. Almost 50% of the people complain about ending up buying unwanted things.
  4. Almost 66.6% of the people agreed that they mostly buy in bulk.
  5. Almost 50% of the users complain about missing important items while shopping online. Unavailability of the items & forgetting the lists are the main reasons.
  6. One of our interviewees mentioned that his mother looks after all the shopping lists. And there is no app for all age groups.
  7. Almost 33.33% of users showed no trust in subscription plans. And on the contrary 50% users were interested in offers.
  8. Almost 33.33% of users complaint that they get distracted by the unwanted suggestions on the app.
  9. Almost 80% of users doubted the quality of the products.
  10. Almost 66.6% of users complaint about excess delivery charges.
  11. Almost 33.33% of the users faced difficulty in returning the wrong goods.
  12. While interviewing users, I found a certain set of users (20–35 years in age) who order for two households. One for their parents living in another city and one for themselves. One of the users told me that to keep track of both lists, he uses multiple apps. He uses one app for himself and another app for his parents.
  13. One of the users also mentioned that it gets confusing while ordering a subcategory of an item.
Tabular representation of the main pain points

Rescoping Problem Statements & Forming How Might We Questions

  1. How might we help the large families to keep a track of their varied needs?
  2. How might we make it easier for all age groups to shop their lists and save them from looking for every item on the long list?
  3. How might we make it easier to keep a track of long-listed items throughout the month?
  4. How might we avoid distractions and unnecessary shopping?
  5. How might we make categorization more efficient?
  6. How might we keep the user focused on their planned products?
  7. How might we provide more assured delivery and return/exchange benefits?
  8. How might we consider all the users’ pain points and crunch them into a subscription plan?

Coming Up With The Ideas & Creating Wireframes

How might we help the large families to keep a track of their varied needs?

Wireframes depicting the shared list feature
  • This version is creating multiple platforms inside one profile. And all the orders go to the same cart.

How might we avoid distraction and unnecessary shopping?

Wireframes depicting suggestions visibility management

How might we make it easier for all age groups to shop their lists and save them from looking for every item on the long list?

Wireframe depicting voice and smart search

How might we help users with different categories of items and avoid the mistake of buying the wrong items with the same name?

How might we help the users remembering their needed items?

The Design

Coming up with the design solutions

1. How might we help the large families to keep a track of their varied needs?

2. How might we make it easier for all age groups to shop their lists and save them from looking for every item on the long list?

3. How might we avoid distractions and unnecessary shopping?

4. How might we help users with different categories of items and avoid the mistake of buying the wrong items with the same name?

5. How might we help the users remembering their needed items?

Coming up with the subscription plan

Plan 1: Basic

Plan 2: Long Distance

Plan 3: Doorstep Daily

Future Scope

Conclusion

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Apoorva Agrawal

Apoorva Agrawal

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Hi! I'm a engineer turned UX/UI Designer who gets joy in talking about solutions that make a difference and believes that UX design is not limited to digital.