puma return app case study

Returns App


Branded Returns Application


Lead Product Designer (UX/UI)


As the online eCommerce market is on the rise year on year, the needs of consumers are also changing and they expect to have a simple and transparent return process if they continue to shop online. It was found through market research that 92% of consumers had a repurchase intent if there was an easy way to return products. The Athlete’s foot (TAF), an enterprise footwear company recognised the changing needs of their consumers and created a partnership with Shippit to utilise their shipping technology to create a transparent and automated return process.

The aim of the project was to build a beta returns product that simplified the return experience for customers to return footwear products by minimising the number of touch points with staff members and speed up the refund process.



The current return process for retailers consists of multiple manual touch points and was not scalable with the growth of the business. Without an automated return system in place, it was impossible for eCommerce businesses to track, prioritise, and manage return requests from customers in a timely manner.

They were receiving return requests from customers through email communications and consolidating the information on a spreadsheet manually.



Conducting user research with multiple types of business was essential to understand the challenges that each of them face. 10 users from different retailers were interviewed based on the segmentation of shipping volume, eCommerce systems, and industry. It was an opportunity to understand the common pain points, motivations, and challenges that many businesses face with handling returns. Data was captured on digital post-it Miro boards which were later used for affinity mapping. See below for examples of the two data sets captured during interviews.

Insights – Pain points

  • Processing and track returns were done using manual data entry where customers often go through several email enquiries to return a product

  • No consolidated system to efficiently track customer returns or centralised view

  • Missing visibility on what products were returned and when they arrived in the warehouse.

  • A full understanding of return shipping costs & commonly returned reasons were difficult to track



Worked directly with Product Managers and Client Stakeholders to rapidly sketch and refine ideas for customer workflow screens. Low-Fi designs were used for quick prototyping and was easy to make various iterations based off user’s feedback quickly.



To design a completely new returns product to improve the user experience for customers and retailers. Retailers can set their own return reasons and conditions in the application so they can capture customer data that determine approval or rejections of a return request.  The business rules play an important role in automating the shipping label generation for customers. This eliminates the need for staff to manually email shipping labels once an order is approved for return since the system will be directly integrated with couriers to retrieve shipping labels. The branded Return’s application enables customers to easily create a return request with 3 simple steps using email and reference number as unique identifiers when retrieving the original order. Retailers has visibility of reach return status and can easily manage the orders using Shippit’s return management platform.



View Beta Prototype here:



Several rounds of usability tests were conducted with users who shop regularly online and have experienced posting returning products back to retailers.


  • 80%  users preferred a drop off return method – post box or newsagency
  • Users wanted the ability to view return policies before submitting a return request
  • Users were unsure what to expect when selecting courier pickup as an option for return
  • No visibility of when the couriers are expected to arrive to pick up the package
  • Majority of users prefer to use mobile to create a return request





Taking the learnings and feedback from the pilot launch with TAF and PUMA, the returns product went through a redesign to enable customisable components that enabled branding customisation to certain elements in the application. The updated design also provided a much richer mobile experience for customers with carefully thought out micro interaction designs.



The customer return screens were animated with Principle to show the workflow and the interactive designs in a mobile experience. The following process shows how a user can login to request a return online, download the return label, and select drop off or pick up as a return method.




UX Warehouse Fulfilment


Warehouse Order Fulfilment | Shippit


Lead Product Designer
User Research, Interaction, Visual design, Prototyping & Testing


The current fulfillment process for small to medium retail businesses is very manual and requires staff to physically memorise items to keep track of orders. As a result, incorrect items were being picked, packed, and sent to the end customer.

Problem Statement: How might we identify areas to minimise human errors within the fulfillment process in the warehouse so that the users can accurately fulfill customers orders faster.



Research Method: Qualitative user research interviews on-site visits with 3 companies (Retailers & Third Party Logistic Warehouse)

Interviewees: Warehouse Managers, Pick & Packers, Stockists

Documentation: Photographs of warehouse site visits, recordings of user interviews, Task observations

Data Synthesis: Affinity Mapping

Learnings: Users were frustrated at orders being mislabeled or misprinted causing mistakes when sending out customer orders. Pick and pack process were normally separate work flows but the tasks were completed by the same person. Manual steps were prone to human errors



Based on the user research, there were 3 main types of users within the fulfillment process for retail businesses. Although the pick and pack work flow tasks were completed by the same user, separate users personas were created to highlight separate goals and frustrations.



The order fulfilment process was mapped out to understand the current steps involved, where each person played a role, and their pain points so we identify areas of opportunities to improve the user experience.



Based on the qualitative data gathered in numerous user interviews, a survey was sent out to a database of users on Shippit’s platform to prioritise the top features within the application, preference in device, and to gain a better understanding of the number of users in various business segments. Below are the results of 90 respondents with majority of them being small to medium businesses.



Based on the research and areas of opportunities that provided the most value, I’ve decided to design a technology solution that would semi automate the fulfillment process using a mobile application. The mobile application would need to be easy to use with minimal training based on the personas of a pick and packer. Below are some of the key features required for the mobile app.



Mapping the swim lanes between technology and various users helped pinpoint the areas where the solution would help reduce human errors within the fulfillment process. Also, it helps stakeholders have an understanding of various touch points across systems and users that the application impacts.



Using a sharpie and paper cut into mobile screens were used to quickly ideate on the work flow solutions. These paper screens were used for quick Guerrilla Usability Testing to quickly gain feedback and iterate on the designs. Sketches were then converted into digital screens for prototyping using Sketch.






Strategic product roadmap initiative

The initiatives were presented to stakeholders at Shippit and have since approached external agencies to scope out the work required to build the mobile minimal viable product. Shippit now has a data driven strategic initiative on the product roadmap to improve the current pick & pack process for small to medium retail business. The data also helps the business understand which features user’s value most within the application and the prioritisation of the required APIs to support this.



Seek out feedback early and continually

Reflecting back at the project, a close collaboration between cross functional teams during each of the design phase by running internal workshops and ideation sessions across Sales, Support, and Engineering team could spark further innovative ideas from different perspectives of the business. Also, keeping the engineering team in loop to understand technology constraints and/or difficulties would saves ample amount of time of re-work required to build each feature.

Simplicity is key

As a designer, we are often lured by attractive, trendy and most up to date designs. However, we must bring ourselves back to the ‘why’ and how we can solve the user’s problems. The primary goal is to understand the user, their pain points, and ideate on a design that solves the root cause of the problem.