Subscriptions App

Subscriptions App

Product Design — 2019

mock subs novo

THE PROJECT

Consumer retention through a management tool focused on explanatory and actionable data for store owners.

Consumer retention through a management tool focused on explanatory and actionable data for store owners.

THE TEAM

Aline Villaça – Designer
Cris David – Product Manager

Felipe Sales – Frontend Developer
Gustavo Melim – Backend Developer

CONTEXT

VTEX is a brazilian SaaS technology company focused on ecommerce solutions that have a daily impact on the work of thousands of people around the world. More than 2500 leading brands of varying sizes and segments, with operations in 26 countries and in global expansion, rely on VTEX for the online sales of their products.

The main touchpoint of the product with the store owners is the Admin, desktop access primarily. It’s where our clients configure and manage everything related to their operations, and where they’ll spend most of their days.

One of the reasons of VTEX's robustness is due to its non-native apps on VTEX App Store. Through there, the product team and the partners' ecosystem can develop and add up solutions for the Admin.

THE CHALLENGE

A previous version of the app admin was on production and it was is limiting for emergent management needs. Clients feedback pointed out that although existing data and features fit basic needs for subscriptions management, there wasn't a way to easily visualize and handle their orders and proper actions to take regarding errors.

It would be simpler if VTEX wasn't a huge global platform and, therefore, they have a very diverse range of clients. Some have big operations and very specialised personnel, others much smaller businesses with fewer people to handle the same activities. Also, with the same app, they handle multiple subscription models very different from each other. They also work on different market niches, varying from pet store items (which involves food and medicine with expiration dates) to monthly geek mystery boxes. The final solution should be designed to fit every business.

PHASE 01

Insights gathering to better define the project

It is naive to think we could deliver the perfect solution for any business model at once, using the same interface, backend and learning from it all at the same time. So, after a thorough research – check it out here – , we decided we would focus our efforts on one of the three models available on the market: recurrent purchases. It also must be useful for everyday operation (suited for short term maintenance decisions) and also for periodic analysis (suited for long term business decisions).

Having stablished that, the Subscriptions admin will be an optimised management tool with actionable explanatory data visualisation for store owners, focused on the chosen model. But also, it must still meet other models basic needs, therefore we don't want VTEX to lose clients. 

See full business model research   ⟶

For whom?

Given the different businesses, we ran visits at some key clients for discovery purposes, from where we could find specific roles for tasks to be done. Even so these activities can be managed by a large team of specialised people or accumulated over fewer people with general knowledge, they are the core of any model and operation.

Given the different businesses, we ran visits at some key clients for discovery purposes, from where we could find specific roles for tasks to be done. Even so these activities can be managed by a large team of specialised people or accumulated over fewer people with general knowledge, they are the core of any model and operation.

DAILY OPERATORS

OPPORTUNITY SEEKERS

PROBLEM SHOOTERS

DECISION MAKERS

Maintain the subscription environment and handle data

Handle potential and current subscribers needs actively

Attend to current subscribers problems passively

Search for holistic data in order to take business decisions

Who are our strong competitors?

A quanti-quali market analysis with 25 players + VTEX Subscriptions app, so the whole team could look at competitors in the most non-subjective way possible. It considered player's integrations, billing and invoicing, growth and management features, broken down into smaller bits towards a vertical analysis. A binary grade system evaluate players, regarding a weigh system set by the team based on what is most important on our scenario and challenge.

Tabela-bench

PHASE 02

Clearing the view of the problem, goals and users

Who are our focus users?

As the most essencial and overloaded persona that enables the business to keep everything on track, at first we focused primarily on subscriptions operators. They manage the daily routine and have the biggest amount of jobs to be done, with the main goal to keep the balance within all orders data and report to other teams, such as support, marketing and c-level personnel.

DAILY OPERATORS

Maintain the subscription environment and handle data

What are our focus users pains?

Due to the slow manual process of analysing subscriptions' data through webs of Excel sheets, supposably simple tasks became time consuming flows over digging numbers to only then on act upon issues. Flows also require additional workarounds and don't prevent human errors. So, issues must be easily visible and actionable, even if it is just a way of knowing about it and get in touch with customers.

RepFlow

PHASE 03

Finding solutions to the problem with the insights

What can we extract from the benchmarking?

Control is key. Every platform aims to flexibility so clients can bend it to every specificity of their business, which can have so many. They are focused on integrations with other parties so they seem to do so, and it really makes an impression. But actually they are very technical and hard to be done, usually creating more costs with agencies and still they don't work that well.

What's new that we can we bring to the market?

VTEX is one of the most robust platforms on the market. This way, there is already a huge advantage towards our competitors: we can natively do almost everything other players need integrations for and clients don't to pay extra. So we built our backend flexible enough to fit most competitive needs. Combining that with a strong set of features in an easy and accessible interface is our gold spot among the competition.

User Journey Map

journey-map

Site Map

sitemap

PHASE 04

Building & testing ideas

How are the low to medium fidelity prototypes performing?

Thanks to VTEX Onda Design System, we could quickly design medium fidelity prototypes and run cocreations and tests with some client's daily operators in order to make sure that the design was fulfilling their needs. The main feedbacks and discoveries were:

01.

Because managing errors were the most urgent tasks to do, the way we were treating the UI made the overall look and feel was over alarming. Altough we can't lie, omit or undertone important errors, information were better balanced the overall business situation in order not to tremble relations with clients unnecessarily.

02.

Inventory rupture actionables weren't making sense at all. By retrying orders, it only generated more incomplete orders, stacking up error tables. To correct that, we removed buttons from the UI and boosted our backend to be able to replace items or still send orders with missing items.

03.

Unique subscribers management needed to be more granular and with easier access. We were using an old feature for that through sales access and it made the flow too long and difficult. So we brought all actions to the subscriptions pages.

PHASE 05

Evaluating results and solution growth

161% increase on recurrent order completion

161% increase on recurrent order completion

15% increase of subscriptions orders on key client

15% increase of subscriptions orders on key client

Goal was 75%

It meant errors were quickly identified and properly fixed, so subscription cycles were completed more often. It was super important in order to avoid friction with clients and eventual churns, impacting on their retention.

Goal was 8%

It meant our customers were able to make better decisions in order to sell more subscriptions orders and prevent them from losing cycles.

Check it out on VTEX website   ⟶

Subscribers
Subscriptions orders _ Completed tab
Settings