Rachel J Graves Home | Contact

A simplified hardware store

Project Type: Concept E-Commerce Website
Organisation: General Assembly
Team Size: 1
Research Team: 5
Project Length: 2 week sprint


Improve the shopping experience for online hardware stores.


User research, contextual enquiry and card sorting informed a minimalist design with simple product categories. Visual design centred around helping users use their imagination to help them imagine products in their lives.

The Problem

User research showed that people are overwhelmed by the amount of categories and products on hardware e-commerce sites. Furthermore, they like to use their imagination when shopping and found that the images used on stores did not aid this.

Hand drawn illustrations sketched on an iPad that show the layout for pages on the website.
Early prototype sketched on an iPad.


  • User Interviews
  • Contextual Enquiry
  • Task Analysis
  • Experience Map
  • Competitive Analysis
  • Information Architecture
  • Card Sorting
  • User Flows
  • Paper Prototyping
  • Mid and High-Fidelity Wireframing
  • InVision Prototype
  • User & Usability Testing
  • Visual Design


  • Sketch
  • Affinity Designer
  • Abstract
  • InVision
  • Google Docs
  • Keynote
Artboard showing the style guides for the website.
A style guide for the website. It was based on user research.

The Solution

An e-commerce site with a very simple navigation. Similar products like paints available in different sizes and colours have been grouped together to reduce the amount of information presented to the user.

It includes:

  • Multiple tested user flows with changes made based on testing.
  • Simple product categories that were designed and tested from open and closed card sorts.
  • A style guide centred around making products seem more tactile, and beautiful to help users invoke their imagination and connect to products when shopping.
Wireframes for the High-fidelity prototype.
High-fidelity sketch prototype after several iterations..