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Stock Culinary Goods
Designing strategy for a growing small business impacted by COVID as part of DESIGNxRI Resiliency Challenge
Stock Culinary Goods, established in 2012, is a small business where people who love to cook and entertain can gather to find the materials to outfit their kitchens, decorate their tables, or simply chat with other like-minded food enthusiasts. It was built to be a social experience, with very few resources put into e-commerce.
With COVID-19, how do we pivot towards reimagining the experience of shopping at Stock in an online world?
Screenshot of brainstorminng session
The team spoke with the owner of Stock, as well as many customers to discover the key areas to address through this challenge. With their input, we were able to identify the opportunities and needs of the business, like utilizing their Instagram followers to reach a broader audience as well as improve the experience of customers preferring to shop in-store.
Understanding the user
After analyzing the shopping experiences, we mapped how customers would feel in their experience of visiting the store, through Instagram, or in-person.
We noticed that most of the customers could be divided into three categories -
25-35-year-olds that love pop-up shops
Find places through Instagram or word-of-mouth
Supports local businesses by sharing on social media
Culinary Grad Students
Stock is hidden from students
Love the knives section
Enjoy collaborating on recipe contests
Middle-aged home chefs
Find specific and unusual items in Stock
Prefers to support local businesses
Uncomfortable shopping in-store but fine with curbside pickups
Stock was successfully engaging their clientele with Providence's vibrant food network. It was not designed to be online and relied solely on being discovered organically. Based on these findings, we provided short and long-term frameworks to help them adapt.
The retail space layout is not designed to guide shoppers effectively during the pandemic
Stock's central strength is the community it serves & retains
Local food culture & offerings
Stock contributes strongly to the food-chain network in Providence
Solutions that can be individually implemented in 1-2 months with little financial investment
Solutions that can be implemented in over 3 months with a significant financial investment
Concepts & Prototypes
We wanted to provide Stock with as many feasible solutions as possible to allow them the choice to decide which ones to implement. We focused on the four key opportunities-
Entry Points: Provide entry points that would lead to a sale or customer engagement.
Collaboration Kits: Collaborate with local chefs to create product kits to increase engagement with the local community
Social Media: Promote the kits on Instagram business account to incentivize online product sales
Store Improvements: Improve store layout and create wayfinding methods to improve the in-store experience
Screenshots of presented solutions
Based on the solutions provided above, we suggested a timeline for implementation. This would allow Stock to choose which solutions to implement or discard.
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