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Shipping automation for ArchiPro Suppliers

Archipro is a one stop platform for home owners, architecture and design professionals and home and furnishing product suppliers in New Zealand, Australia and Canada. Along with project management, ad management, it has a marketplace for product suppliers and design professionals to list their products and services where homeowners can purchase those products, book professional architects, interior designers and other service providers.

Design and research plan

Identifying the problem

This problem was around the 'shipping and returns’ component of the platform where the product suppliers (merchants) would have to go through a lengthy manual process on every order received.

Each order required the merchants to make a new call / booking with the shipping partner. Then send confirmation email to the buyer with tracking number for which buyer will have to go to shipping partner website to track their order. For returns, merchants would go through a similar cycle.

Key objective for us

For merchants: To have an easy-to-use shipping experience that saves them excessive shipping costs and time. For buyers: To have transparency of courier options, delivery costs and have an experience that keeps the buyers coming back An ideal solution would cut down the time merchants had to spend on creating a consignment and filling buyer’s details in each of the shipping partner’s website. The desired solution would not only make an easy and smoothing shipping process for the merchants but also for the buyers to receive live updates, have clear idea of delivery costs, and status of their orders, have one source of information for the entire order journey.

Solution design

Shipping automation hub — Seller's order dashboard

After multiple wireframe iterations and internal testing. We produced high-fidelity designs to start testing with actual sellers registered on Archipro.

Complete flow

Confirm an order
Seller confirms an order. For any quieries seller can directly message the customer using "Message customer" button
Create a pickup request
Once the order is ready, seller creates a pick-up request for the shipping partner.
Add consignment packaging details
This helps the shipping partner pre-assess the package type, size and weight that auto-generates the shipping cost that will be paid by the seller. To help seller calculate the details, we auto-aggregate the sum of product data (weight, dimensions). Seller can also use pre-filled data using duplicate function. Version 2 includes saving package profiles.
Status updates
Consignment status is updated as the shipping partner receives the pickup request. Once the seller requests a pickup it also sends a notification to the buyer that their package is ready to be shipped and a shipping label with tracking number is auto generated from shipping provider's API. Once the package is delivered, the status updates as well as buyer receives a confirmation email.

Alternate shipping methods and click & collect options

Custom shipping partners
Sellers can always use custom shipping partners using the pre-defined shipping partners. After adding tracking number and shipping the product, the system generates an auto message to buyers with tracking number.
Click and Collect
Products and packages that are ready for collection can be marked as ready by the sellers. This sends an email to buyers with collection details.

Returns & refunds process

Packaging details aggregation

To make it an easier experience for the sellers, we aggregated the products’ data into approximate weight and dimensions. That gives the seller a ball park number to what their packaging weight and dimensions will be like. The seller can always add custom details or divide one consignment to ship it into multiple packaging/boxes of different dimensions and weights. Adding 'duplicate' feature was small but handy for the sellers to avoid a repetition function. Instead, they can easily re-use the packaging details they added for a previously used package.

User testing (2nd) on high fidelity designs

Second round of user feedback

From second round of user testing with high fidelity designs we learnt and iterate the following: — Improvement in copy, to give users more context of each step and feature. — Revision of visual elements, or adding supporting text to them (for example icons) that were not very clear to end users. — Option for sellers to add point of collection details for shipping partners and 'click and collect' customers. — More clarity in refund process and refunding the shipping costs. — UX improvements in refund process. — Addition of Shipping partner contact section, for sellers to be able to quick-contact the shipping partners in case of any clarification required with the shipping schedules.

Business impact

• Cut down on dispatch processing times for merchants by 70%
• Reduced customer service questions, giving buyers more clarity and confidence on the shipping price and journey of the ordered products
• Live tracking with On-send API
• 100% accurate shipping price for the buyers.