Building Gallery Walls (Research)
Platform: Mobile web and desktop
Deliverables: Competitive research, UX recommendations
Objective: A "gallery wall" in interior design refers to a collection
of art, photographs, and decorative objects arranged in a loose
Gallery walls are extremely popular, but difficult for
e-commerce as they're also highly personal and potentially
time-consuming for users to create. Product managers sought to
discover a way to make this process simple and empowering for users,
utilizing our 3D imaging technology.
Competitive research was difficult-- no direct competitors were merchandising gallery walls in the way we were envisioning. Typically, users could search a term like "gallery wall" or shop by categories and expect to see a combination of wall art and frames.
While the product results are technically accurate, this doesn't help the user visually account for their own art and/or photography, and the number of options can overwhelm and intimidate them.
Search results for "gallery walls" on Target.com
I conducted a remote testing study to determine how our target customers were typically shopping for gallery walls today.
The video below collects a series of key insights that I used together with Wayfair's existing marketing personas to create user personas specific to the goals and problems this feature aimed to address.
The personas below addressed the separate and overlapping goals of our user base:
"Alexis" -- A busy, young renter or first-time homeowner looking to pull together a trendy look with minimal effort;
"Melodie" -- An established homeowner with the financial ability to get what she wants, but is easily overwhelmed and requires guidance;
and "Diane" -- A self-proclaimed expert with a specific vision and the desire for total creative control and lots of options.
Summary and UX Recommendations
After completing remote surveys and testing, I created the below document to present my findings to stakeholders and provide recommendations for the various teams working on bringing this project to life.
Ultimately, we decided not to build a new feature to sell this specific product type; instead, we decided to group together frames and decor in a curated browse experience to further determine how users are visualizing and creating gallery walls with Wayfair products. From there, we'll be able to further refine product groups and see how much customization power is truly warranted with the creation of a specialized feature.
This ultimately allows us to sell users the type of products they're looking for and continue to collect useful data without wasting design and development time on building a feature that may not accurately meet their needs.