Merchant Tablet

 

The goal

I lead design for Merchant Tablet which is a complement to the existing mobile and online Merchant Center platforms. 

 
 

THE Problem

In an effort to create a solution that acted as a partner to the Merchant Center web experience, Merchant Tablet was intended as a counter solution for Groupon Merchants.  

The rearchitecture of the entire merchant system was a rudimentary concept during the Merchant Tablet design process. The tablet format was identified as a good proving ground for some of our larger experience goals. Also, we were building this for the long term so it made more sense to be a bit idealistic with the framework and visual style rather than have to implement a redesign shortly after its release.

 
 
 

The Audience

The tablet was released in early September 2015 and was released for both iOS and Android. Tablet's primary use was as a redemption tool so the primary audience is businesses who have front-of-house employees where the Tablet would prove a useful addition to their customer interactions. The post-MVP focus on adding our booking tool to Tablet allowed us to narrow the focus to be businesses in the food and drink and health, beauty, and wellness industries.

 
 

The team

I lead design for Merchant tablet while working closely with the iOS and Android engineer leads and a Product Manager. Product and engineering for the product are based in Berlin, Germany.

Also involved were product managers on specific features that were being included in the tablet. 

 
 

ConStraints

The push for tablet was seen as an opportunity to move forward some of the elements included in the redesign of the larger system that was just gaining momentum. This way we could prove the worth of the larger system changes we wanted in a smaller form factor and project scale.

 

 
 

DESIGN PROCESS

Design kicked off in Berlin were I proposed the structure and framework. Over the next three months I designed the individual sections and worked alongside engineering to implement our MVP.

Following the release of the MVP we had one-on-one sessions with merchants to gain feedback on the product. The feedback we received allowed us to prioritize feature releases and improvements moving forward.

 
 
 

The five major sections that make up the Merchant Tablet—Dashboard, Customer Feedback, Payment History, Redemption, and Campaign Performance.

 
 

Status

Additional features and improvements were made after the initial release. Since September 2015 we have integrated our booking platform onto tablet. This allows merchants to manage incoming booking requests and their calendar across all Groupon Merchant platforms. 

Current work is being done to align our current mobile experience on iOS and Android to the aesthetic and functionality of the tablet. This was the intent from the beginning, better allowing the team to manage releases and work simultaneously across the varying form factors. My goal for mobile and tablet are for them to be aligned so users have the same experience optimized for their chosen screen size.

Mobile usage has increased to make up half of Merchant activity on Merchant Center tools. Of that half, 25% of users are mobile-only.

 
 

RETROSPECTIVE

During the initial design planning for tablet I felt strongly that the design for iOS and Android platforms should align as much a possible. This meant iOS used a floating action button which is a pattern more commonly seen on Android. This ended up being a lot of manual engineering work on a UI element that was confusing to users. We ended up abandoning it and implementing the more traditional navigation bar on iOS.