Inclusive Grocery Shopping Experience
PROJECT CONTEXT
Our team was tasked with an inclusive design problem. We were interested with improving the accessibility of the current grocery shopping experience. We focused on the physical limitations for those with difficulties of purchasing groceries at the store.

This was a 10-week project for Visual Storytelling: Microsoft Expo.
ROLE
Project management + Experience Design

  • Field Observations & Secondary Research
  • Ideation
  • Interaction Design
PROCESS
We began our research process by first looking into how visually-impaired individuals participate in grocery shopping. We saw that most employ the help of grocery store clerks, or friends and family members during their shopping trips. We then conducted informal on-site observations at local grocery stores to assess the physical limitations present.
Problem Space
Our secondary research revealed that most online grocery shopping experiences that provide efficient grocery delivery, lack the ability to guarantee quality control. This can only be achieved by personally selecting groceries at the store itself.
The group members then compared all their findings from primary and secondary research into an affinity diagram to find common themes and potential opportunities. We found that there are many obstacles that affect a multitude of different individuals of various capabilities. As a result, we chose to utilize the fact that grocery stores are designed for able-bodied individuals and thus wanted to empower those who have difficulties navigating and buying items at the grocery store.
Affinity Diagram
User Flow
Interaction Model
During the ideation phase, we concluded that the optimal solution for this problem was to create a service that allows for community members to assist in grocery shopping. This allows those with difficulties getting and navigating through the store to organize shopping trips. It also behooved us to also improve the experience for shoppers by creating a navigation feature to make it easier for shoppers to find items.
Interface Mockup
To develop these ideas, we created storyboards, user flows, and interaction models. As a result, we found out the necessary factors that can benefit both the requesting party and the shopping party.
To further exemplify the interaction, the result of the project culminated in a video prototype. With this, we were able to effectively show all aspects of the interaction flow.
Shopping List and Navigation Interfaces
OUTCOME
Designing for an inclusive audience can be challenging at times, especially when addressing the area of grocery shopping. Our solution relies on the idea of community building and connecting people through empathy. However, we see that the technology is already available to support the ideas presented. For the navigation aspect of weKart, we have found that there are already advances in applying sensor technology inside buildings for mapping purposes. It is also possible to create shopping lists through multiple input methods, thus adhering to the capabilities of different types of users.
With this, foot traffic in the grocery store can be reduced due to less shopping trips as well as easier navigation of groceries. WeKart also combines the personal qualities of grocery shopping with the efficiency of consolidated shopping trips, which is lacking from other current grocery shopping applications and platforms.