A lot of e-commerce UX research has already been done. To optimize the user experience of buying cannabis seeds online, I delved into hundreds of research articles and case studies and implemented their conclusions as much as possible.
What They do
In addition to their popular shop in Amsterdam, Sensi Seeds also sells cannabis seeds online. They target different audiences and are very interested in providing the best user experience since it's directly correlated with their profits. They have a more affordable brand called Weed Seed Shop which was the website we focused on.
Problem to solve
Improving the buying process in which each improvement had to be backed up with acknowledged user research. In stead of conducting our own research a knowledgebase called Baymard was used.
Learning e-commerce best practices by reading relevant research articles
Baymard has a great organization system which made it easy to only read the relevant articles, which were articles about product overview pages, product detail pages, the shopping cart and checkout process. I had -and took- the time to get Baymard's e-commerce guidelines in my head. I made a note whenever I thought a guideline could be necessary.
Orientating and getting to know the website from a user's perspective
Clicking around the website focusing on UX and gather every idea or thought I had. Baymard only covers e-commerce related research papers, it was useful to also note my own findings.
Making wireframes for product overview and product pages
Gathered my notes and started wireframing the current state of the website. For each element I checked if I noted a corresponding guideline that I could implement continuously alternating between designing and reading. A made sure that every improvement I had a reference to a Baymard guideline.
Presenting, getting feedback and iterate
I made a prototype in which I gathered client feedback and that also contained all my arguments for the improvements I made. As a result of the many research references, discussions where efficient and well-grounded.
Making wireframes for checkout process
I changed my strategy for these wireframes since the checkout process included multiple steps. I defined each step and looked for related guidelines that where not yet implemented. A checklist of improvements was formed and I designed this set of wireframes much quicker because of that. The prototype included references as well.
Determining the most efficient plan of action to get the balance between research and designing and right.
Keeping track of design decisions is always a good idea