Debenhams were opening their first store in Australia and wanted our help to launch and develop their brand's omni-channel experience.




Senior Designer


UX · UI · Research


The brief

Business goals
Become an established brand in the Australian market and create a loyal customer base.
Use technology to complement the in-store experience and establish trust and credibility through excellent service.
With a separately managed ecommerce site, the decision was pre-defined to go in the direction of a mobile app as their primary customer facing channel.
A mobile app would allow the customer to control and interact with the whole Debenhams ecosystem, all from the customer’s smartphone.

Research process

Methods used
Customer interviews
Customer journey
Market research analysis
Prototype testing
Information Architecture
Without an established presence yet in Australia, we weren't able to recruit existing Debenhams customers, so reached out to 15 department store shoppers to gain insights on their needs, motivations and frustrations to help shape the app solution.
Key focus areas
What are the challenges or barriers with app use & adoption?
What’s important for a great app experience?
What are department store shopper’s needs and unmet needs, both online and off?
How are customers interacting with their smart phones in-store?
Lo-fi prototype feedback

Core customer needs

I need assistance
Some of the customer’s core frustrations are seen during their in-store experiences, being unimpressed with busy and un-interested floor staff as well as poor change room assistance and change room availability.
With only one store in Australia, it needs to be easy for users to find and access information they may not be able to in-store.
Finding what’s right for me
With a myriad of products and customer archetypes, department store customers still need to feel like they belong and can find what they’re after with ease.
Personalization is an important feature for users with specific style and sizing needs.
Product is key
Whether exploring new products or looking for something specific, product browsing is the key goal of any shopping experience, and as such it must be well thought-out and intuitive to use.
Without a traditional website to browse and purchase products, it’s important that an app can service these core customer needs.
It better be worth the space
Customers are protective of their storage space and regularly cull apps they don’t use often.
We had customers conduct a card sorting exercise to help us understand what is important to them in an app experience.