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My Account

Quick solutions for AO account holders

Back in 2017, I joined the Customer Interaction team at AO as a UX Designer. We were working on creating a single page application for AO account holders, as well as making new features and giving the system a fresh new look.

AO, formerly known as Appliances Online, is an online-only retailer operating in the UK, Germany and the Netherlands. It specialises in household appliances and consumer electronics.

To comply with a non-disclosure agreement, I have omitted any confidential information. The information provided in this case study is my own and doesn’t necessarily reflect the views of AO.
My Account user flow

My role

I led the project of re-designing My Account, conducting UX research and facilitating workshops. I partnered with a business analyst, a project manager, three software developers, one front-end developer, and Customer Interaction team's team lead who played a role of product owner. I designed testable prototypes that eventually led to final UI of the application. I also created a scalable set of icons for My Account that were fed into the design system.

An old version of My Account
In an old version for each interaction there was a dialogue box

The challenge

Scalability

Developers were struggling to add new features to the old version of My Account, due to a long scrolling page where features were displayed one below another. This approach wasn't scalable, and to add new features, the team had to create additional pop-up dialogues.

Pre-existing insights showed that most users weren’t scrolling to the bottom of the page where they would find order history and also edit their orders. However, the data suggested that order level functionalities were the most engaging features in My Account. Customers want to view their order history, however, this simple function was difficult to find and use.

Business needs

From the business perspective, the goal was to increase the uptake of self-serve features. These self-serve features would give customers the ability to reschedule their delivery date and time, download invoices, cancel orders, add services to an existing order, add delivery instructions or contact a manufacturer directly from My Account.

Initial wireframes
Users' concern around data safety

Research

Key findings
  1. My Account retention rate was small. Nearly two-thirds of account holders visited only once and fewer than one-fifth of account holders visited twice.
  2. 87.9% of orders within My Account include only one item.
  3. Account holders have significantly lower drop-off rate on every step in the checkout funnel.
  4. The most commonly used features were downloading an invoice and tracking an order.

It was tricky to measure the performance of the old version of My Account because the number of visits was small. We only recorded the visit when the user was logged-in, and the log-in page visits weren’t recorded.

My Account fits different needs

I had to step away from traditional personas, as one person making numerous orders could have different needs depending on circumstances. We had to ensure that My Account is accessible to every account holder, giving the customer control over the features.

Because My Account is a complex system fitting different needs, we segmented base customer journey into different stages such as pre-purchase, purchasing and post-purchase.

We conducted a range of surveys and gathered insights. These guided us to build a product with better information architecture, content strategy and navigation.

1 in 4 customers want to change a time slot

A solution

Multi-page application

The solution came by merely stepping away from one long scrolling page to create a multi-page application with improved navigation.

This solution was future-proofed and scalable, as it enabled developers to create a separate order details page, where a customer can see all of their order details, as well as using functions such as order cancellation, downloading invoices and rescheduling orders.

Key learnings

Working directly with UX researchers we quickly tested different hypotheses and prototyped reusable components. We tested multiple variations of navigation in labs to find out which was the best way for our customers to navigate My Account.

Findings showed that having left-aligned sidebar navigation is most comfortable for desktop users, and full-page navigation on mobile devices provided a seamless experience. A stand-alone menu was created, making it easier for customers to navigate the application and amend their order and personal details.

All my orders are there, it looks and feels brilliant on mobile - including the reset password page.
Ali McArthur
Thanks for giving us such a smooth journey.
Ibtesam Bloch
An old version of sign in page
Since 2018 the number of sign-ups has been steadily increasing

The outcome

My Account is used by thousands of active users every month across different screen sizes and territories. Together with the Customer Interaction team, we created a better customer experience for existing and new account holders by improving the accessibility of the product.

A new mobile-first design improved usability, so customers have a seamless experience whichever device they use when interacted with My Account. The new version also future-proofs the functionality, enabling addition of new features. A simple stand-alone menu was created to improve navigation, making it easier for customers to edit their details and track their orders.

We created a separate order details page, enabling customers to see all the details about their order and giving them access to the order level functions such as cancellation requests, rescheduling a delivery, downloading invoices and adding services to their order. We improved the process of registering with AO, and signing in to existing accounts by allowing social login.

Custom icon set

I created utility icons with 24px by 24px grid for My Account. The new icons come in two variations outlined and filled. This icon set enables the user to identify facets and interactive elements on the page quickly.

Filled and outlined icons

What’s next?

As the new version of My Account is scalable, I propose adding the following features:

  1. Enable customers to add more services to an existing order, e.g. installation, unpack or recycling.
  2. Enable customers to add special instructions after placing an order with AO.

Visits from account holders dropped after GDPR and the number of account sign-ups reduces every year. To keep our customers coming back, I think that introducing the following features would improve this:

  1. A loyalty program for account holders to improve retention and increase brand recognition.
  2. An AO credit card that will allow customers to check their balance, view transactions online and make payments. Customers could collect points and earn benefits.

There is always a path to learn and improve the quality of the product.

For confidentiality reasons, I have omitted the actual metrics.
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