If you want to take market share…
Donna: customer of a competitor
• She suspects that her current distributor is charging too much
• Right now, she is angry because her shipment is 2 days late
• She is using a search engine to try to find alternatives
• She is using a range of search terms from generic (“cleaning supplies”) to specific
(“corrugated cardboard boxes 22h x 18l x 10d”)
• Her current distributor is making her look bad
Desired Features and Functions
I wonder if someone else can do a better • Find Acme site(s) via Google
job than the company I am buying from • Search and view catalog(s) without having a UID or PW
now? • Will search for specific products using Google
• For keyword query of a brand name, the internal search accurately displays results
• For keyword query of a commodity name (such as cleaning supplies), the internal search
helps Donna figure out what she wants
• Search results are formatted for easy “skimming”
• Search results summarize prices and availability for known products, regardless of
catalog or URL
If you want to increase customer loyalty…
Jolene: Procurement in Large Company
• Gets interrupted a lot
• Someone else tells her what to order – she does not make decisions about products
• Typically orders the same products repeatedly
• Typically knows the item # when ordering
• Less price-conscious
• Does not need to know a lot about the products she orders. Seldom visits a Product
• Heavy user of full reporting capabilities
• Each month, she rolls up her website purchasing reports into a certain custom format
for her company’s internal use
• On the job for 6 months, probably will leave by end of year
• Heavy computer and internet user, both on the job and in her personal life
• Hates reading a lot of text or making a lot of clicks. Hates it even worse when she has to
do it for her job.
• Hates figuring out words or terminology that she doesn’t know.
I just want to get in and get out. Desired Features and Functions
• Excel, CSV, or other native spreadsheet format that Jolene can easily edit
• Graceful website timeout; fast site performance; robust error handling when Jolene
makes a typo during checkout
• Easy way for Jolene’s successor to get a UID and PW, because Jolene didn’t pass it on
If you want to reach an under-served market...
Wile E. Coyote: Engineer, Carnivore
• Sometimes orders the same products repeatedly
• Other times, desperately searches for hard-to-find items for a very particular purpose.
Item might not be in catalog, item might be out of stock, or item # may have changed.
Wants to know if Acme could get it anyway, or get a similar item.
• Often refers to his or customer’s unique item #, may not be the same as manufacturer’s
item # or Acme item #.
• Not price conscious. Much more concerned with speedy delivery.
• Will use search engines to search for a specific product.
• He can’t find items that he ordered before.
• From reading descriptions of items he hasn’t ordered before, he can’t tell whether the
item is the right one for his specific project.
Sometimes I order the same things, like
dynamite, matches and rope. Sometimes I Desired Features and Functions
need things I’ve never ordered before. • A way to buy repeat items without searching for them in the catalog each time
But I always need it now! • System remembers correlations between manufacturer’s item number and Wile E.’s item
• Opt in to email notifications when frequently ordered items change, or have new related
• Detailed product descriptions, with the type of details that he needs