UX Success Story


Uncovering opportunities to enhance the online grocery shopping experience with usability testing

Putting grocery shopping to the test

Hy-Vee Aisles Online had been competing in the digital grocery space since 2015, but the system had never been formally tested for usability.

To improve their digital experience and keep up with services from competitors, we evaluated Aisles Online with real Hy-Vee customers.

Woman shopping with Aisles Online

The Team, Timeline, & Scope

Our team completed this project over the span of 3 months.

Kayla Byington

UX Lead & Researcher

Kait Bown


Kurt Vander Wiel


Participants icon

Diverse participants

Desktop testing icon

Desktop tests

Mobile testing icon

Mobile tests

Unique tasks icon

Unique tasks

First, we created a testing plan & protocol.

Evaluation participants were recruited and hand-picked through an online screener based on where they shop for groceries, how frequently they shop for groceries on digital platforms, how many people they shop for, as well as demographic information. We prepared a series of tasks and questionnaires for them to complete in order to provide both quantitative and qualitative information for Hy-Vee.

Three customer groups emerged

Overall, shoppers were able to complete their tasks—usability wasn’t the issue. The problems we saw were rooted in unmet expectations and perceptions.

Deal-focused group icon

6 of 23 Shoppers

said they relied heavily on ads and coupons, creating their cart mostly based on what was on sale

Lowest cost group icon

5 of 23 Shoppers

said they started with a list, but were not brand loyal and would choose the lowest cost item.

Price apathy icon

12 of 23 Shoppers

said they started with a list and added items to their cart with less regard to price. They used the “Buy Again “feature to save time

Identifying Model Challenges

Hy-Vee Aisles users had expectations that differed from the reality of the product. This caused frustration and abandoment of the task at hand.

Model challenges graphic

I feel like there has to be a better way.

Testing Participant on choosing substitutions at checkout

We outlined the complete user journey.

Hy-Vee Aisles users had expectations that differed from the reality of the product. This caused frustration and abandoment of the task at hand.

Michael Novotny

Visual Logic has a way of stripping away all the visual noise and cutting experiences down to something that is elegant and simple to use.

Michael Novotny, Director of Software Engineering

We delivered 46 pages of invaluable insights from the voice of the customer. What’s next?

We provided recommendations to the Hy-Vee Aisles Online team for moving forward- from search bar specifics to the entire digital ecosystem. Hy-Vee is known for providing a helpful smile in every aisle, and we made sure they were prepared to implement that experience digitally.

A one-stop shop for financial literacy & action

Our work with Principal Mexico chevron_right

Designing mission ready software

View our military work chevron_right

We don't bite.

Relationships don’t start with a contract. From general UX questions to project inquiries, let’s start a conversation.