Client Spotlight

“Working with PRWD has been invaluable.
Paul is very logical and detailed in his approach and communicated his findings very clearly to help us see things differently”

Paul McDermott, Head of E-Commerce at Speedo International


Posts Tagged ‘UCDcommerce’

User Centered Design (UCD) Process Overview

Thursday, July 31st, 2008

We have recently produced a downloadable 1 page process overview for User Centered Design (UCD). I felt that it will be good to share this with our blog readers rather than this just been part of our consultancy process with our direct clients.
PRWD\'s User Centered Design Process Overview
Below I have pulled out all the definitions of each phase in the UCD process, along with a summary of the services which are delivered during each phase.

Please note, some of the terminology used may not bbe too familiar to some readers, but rather than describing each service I wanted to keep this post more to the point. Feel free to call us for further information on a particular service or terminology used.

The 4 Phases of User Centered Design

  • Analysis
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • Deployment

You will notice that there isn’t an order assigned to the 4 phases, as UCD is a process of continual improvement. For the development of completely new business systems, applications and e-commerce platforms, the process would start with the analysis phase and work through the remaining 3 phases, but during the deployment phase on-going evaluation of the system and the users does mean that the process can then be continued, back in to the analysis phase (but to a lesser extent).

The Analysis Phase

User Centered Design Analysis Phase


This phase ensures all business and user requirements are taken into consideration, prior to the start of the design phase

PRWD Services

  • stakeholder analysis
  • competitor benchmarking
  • persona development
  • defining user scenarios
  • conducting field studies
  • defining usability goals

The Design Phase

User Centered Design Design Phase


This phase provides a comprehensive approach to the design of the system, ensuring the design meets all user and business requirements

PRWD Services

  • navigation models
  • screen flow samples
  • information architecture
  • card sorting
  • paper prototyping
  • wireframing
  • interaction design
  • user testing

The Implementation Phase

User Centered Design Implementation Phase


This phase takes the user tested system and interaction designs and implements them into working systems ready to go live

PRWD Services

  • object orientated design
  • user interface integration
  • server implementation
  • heuristic evaluations
  • user testing
  • documentation

The Deployment Phase

User Centered Design Deployment Phase


This phase involves continuous evaluation of the new system, monitoring the performance against usability objectives

PRWD Services

  • user/customer surveys
  • field studies
  • performance analysis
  • improvement scoping
  • continuous analysis

And finally, a UCD definition as seen on our UCDcommerce site

In broad terms, user-centered design (UCD) is a design philosophy and a process in which the needs, wants, and limitations of the end user of an interface or document are given extensive attention at each stage of the design process.

Further Reading

Below are a range of links which will provide additional information on User Centered Design

Variations in UCD methodology- what are yours?

There will always be slight variation’s in the process with other usability and software development agencies, and I’ll be interested to hear comments on these differences.

On saying this, one thing is for sure – when following User Centered Design principles, users need to be an integral part of the complete design and development process.

UCDCommerce Adds Support For Google Checkout

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

The latest update of our flagship e-commerce system UCDCommerce adds support for the Google Checkout payment system. This allows users to make purchases without having to register on the site, taking advantage of the reliability and trust of the Google brand to help encourage users to make their purchases.

Trust and convenience

For first-time visitors to an e-commerce site, having to register and enter their payment details can be a daunting process. Fear of fraud and the desire to avoid having to maintain a list of passwords for every e-commerce site they visit means that many users can be discouraged from buying from companies not already known to them. Google Checkout helps to overcome these worries by ensuring that all payment details are handled by Google and not the retailer, and also ensures that the user needs only to maintain their Google password and not a separate one for the retail site.

Advantages for retailers

Google Checkout is good news for retailers too. It removes some of the barriers to purchase which leads to more conversions, and it can also add value to Google AdWords campaigns – if your e-commerce site implements Google Checkout, your AdWords advertisements will automatically have a ‘Google Checkout’ logo appear next to them, letting the user know that they are only a few clicks away from being able to buy the product advertised. This can be a crucial advantage in making your advertisements stand out from the crowd and, again, can lead to better conversion rates.

The User Experience

Here at PRWD, we take user experience very seriously, so we have naturally considered the impact on user experience of adding Google Checkout support. Fortunately, Google take user experience seriously too, and their checkout interface is well-designed, following good interaction design principles. We’re confident that Google Checkout can enhance the experience of your site’s users.

Future Developments

This is just the latest new feature to be added to UCDCommerce. We’ve got lots of interesting plans for the future, which we’ll be revealing over the coming weeks and months.

Introducing UCDcommerce, PRWD's User Centered Design E-commerce Platform

Friday, July 11th, 2008

After our branding and marketing strategy work we are delighted to officially launch UCDcommerce, our best practice driven e-commerce platform.

This follows our recent posts on what symbolises customer conversion, an inside look at brand concepting, and strapline brainstorming for UCDcommerce.

UCDcommerce Website Features

If you’ve not already taken a look at the UCDcommerce site, below is a summary of what we have decided to launch with:

An introduction to the platform, explaining how UCDcommerce allows us to deliver User Centered Designed e-commerce solutions

A screengrab of the UCDcommerce website

A page dedicated to why your business will benefit from using UCDcommerce, including the statement that “your business recognise the importance of user experience for increasing brand credibility, conversion and retention”

A screengrab of the UCDcommerce website

A page showing prospective e-commerce customers exactly who is behind the platform, the amount of credibility and blue chip experience we have, and our expert usability services

A screengrab of the UCDcommerce website

Additional areas we have included are:

  • A definition of User Centered Design (UCD) for people who aren’t familiar with this method of designing user experiences
  • Dynamic links into our most recent articles, on the subjects of UCDcommerce, retailing and best practice

Onwards and upwards

Alongside the development of our Content Management System and ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system, the continual evolvement of UCDcommerce will now begin in earnest, as we attract the right type of serious online retailers to our business.

UCDcommerce Brand Logo Revealed

Friday, July 11th, 2008

After our strapline brainstorming sessions, our brand concepts and considering which symbols best represent customer conversion, our new brand identity for UCDcommerce is now finalised.

Bold, simple and with a touch of personality (plus our key conversion message)

There are 2 variations of the new logo dependant on how they are being used, either horizontally or vertically, and we are delighted with the boldness of the brand, the simplicity and the touch of personality provided by the strapline (top marks for Rob on this!).

UCDcommerce brand logo

UCDcommerce website is round the corner

Following the finalisation of the new brand logo we will shortly be revealing the new website for UCDcommerce, so watch this space!

An Inside Look at Brand Logo Concepting for UCDcommerce

Wednesday, July 9th, 2008

Following on from my post around symbolising User Centered Design and Customer Conversion for UCDcommerce, I thought it would be good to share some of the brand concepts that I’ve been working on, as we move ever closer to the launch of the new brand identity.

Recapping on some of the USP’s the brand logo should aim to portray

  • The brand is all about User Centered Design
  • Customer engagement, conversion and retention are key principles
  • With UCDcommerce suited to serious online retailers including blue chips, striking a balance between having a slightly corporate edge whilst also delivering fun, engaging and personal e-commerce platforms is fundamental to our proposition

Example’s A – focussing on circles to symbolise our User Centered Design approach

UCDcommerce logo concepts

Example’s B – focussing on circles to symbolise converting from unfulfilled through to fulfilled

UCDcommerce logo concepts

Example’s C – using straight lines to signify a clear path for customers

UCDcommerce logo concepts

Straplines, Symbols and some Brand Logo Concepts

What with brainstorming sessions for straplines, consideration of how symbols can help represent our core principles, and with some of our brand logo concepts on the table, we are now getting much closer to finalising the new brand identity for UCDcommerce and we can’t wait to share it with the online retailing community. So keep an eye out!