Redesigning the Physical Retail Experience

Imagine shopping at a retail outlet. You have the items you want to purchase at hand. You head to the checkout line, thinking about the 10 other stores you want to visit before the end of the day. When you get there, you realise that there are 15 other shoppers ahead of you, all waiting to pay. You then spend a frustrating 20-minute waiting for your turn to checkout before you can proceed to the next store. At the next store, you fail to escape the equally long waiting time to checkout. Before you realise, it is the end of the day and you have 3 more stores that you want to visit. You have spent more than 2 hours just waiting in line. You wonder, is there a way to faster the purchasing process and eliminate the long checkout lines?

QueueHop , a start-up launched at Y Combinator’s Winter 2016 Demo Day, is a self-checkout app for retail stores. QueueHop transforms traditional tags into RFID tags to detect whether an item has been purchased. As a shopper, all you do is scan, pay, remove tags and leave. If you haven’t paid, the tag will set off an alarm as you’re trying to leave the store. With the QueueHop app, you never have to wait in line to pay again.

For my UI/UX class, a friend and I decided to prototype the QueueHop app without having looked at the design of the app itself. In our prototype, we emphasis the self-checkout component while maintaining the in-store shopping experience.

HomePage of the QueueHop Prototype

When one first download the app, it will prompt the user to sign-up. The user is now logged-in and has his/her information and a default credit card payment option registered with the app.

The user is now in a retail outlet. When the user opens the app, the HomePage will appear and the user will see a map of the area with stores onboard QueueHop. Here the user can select which store he/she is in by tapping either on the store’s location on the map or on the scrollable list of stores below.

Adidas Store Page

The user decides to shop at the Adidas store. After tapping on the Adidas store in the HomePage, the user will be brought to the Store Page. For this page, we envision for the app to design a basic template and function for each store. Then, it is up to the individual store to personalise the Store Page according to their own interest.

There will be a Featured Items section for stores to inform shoppers of selected featured and/or discounted items and where to locate them in the store. Then, there are two main buttons in the Store Page that leads to two other pages that encapsulates the main problem QueueHop is trying to solve- the Scanning page and the Shopping Cart page.

Scanning Page
Shopping Cart Page

When the user wants to check his/ her item out, the user just need to proceed to the Scanning page and scan the RFID tag on each item. A pop-up box will appear to confirm that the item has been added to the shopping cart.

Clicking on the camera icon at the bottom of the page brings the user to the Shopping Cart page. Here, the user will be able to review the items he/she has added to his/her shopping cart, as well as remove any items from the shopping cart.

Once the user feels ready to checkout, the user can just click on the “check out” button at the bottom of the shopping cart. This will bring the user to the payment page with the user’s default credit card information. One click and the items are now the user’s!

Each store will have to implement its own removal process for the RFID tags. We envision that users will find removing the tags a pretty easy process. If users fail to remove the RFID tags before exiting the store, the alarms at the exit will ring. After removing the tags, the user is free to bring his/ her items home!

You can find an interactive mockup of our prototype here . Moving forward, we hope to further refine this basic prototype of speeding up the checkout process. We would love to hear any thoughts, feedbacks or comments from you all!

Like what you read? Give Xiao Wei a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.