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Frequent iterative usability testing enabled Waitrose to develop a truly user focused and high performing groceries site

  • Who: Waitrose
  • What: A complete redesign on their Groceries website
  • How: Iterative prototype testing on desktop and mobile across multiple areas of the site
  • Result: A new site launched on the foundation of user research to positive consumer reviews


We began working with Waitrose when they were on the verge of embarking on a major revamp of their Groceries website. Keen to take a user-centric approach, this began long and fruitful partnership with Waitrose, stretching over a number of years, 21 projects and across all device platforms.

What We Did

We worked closely with Waitrose to test many aspects of their new Groceries site, spending time looking in detail at individual components in iterative rounds of testing.
The main project spanned 10 different rounds of testing and an equivalent number of prototypes, across desktop and tablet devices. It allowed thorough testing of general usability and functionality issues alongside the testing of the many specific areas, including:

  • Mega menu Information Architecture
  • Search filter preferences
  • Home page navigation
  • Favourites functionality
  • Key shopping journeys
  • Waitrose specific navigational tools

We were also involved in three rounds of testing on the prototype of their mobile site, three rounds of testing on wireframes for the Wine Cellar section of the Waitrose site and a round of testing involving their gardening site.

This in depth involvement in the Groceries website, allowed us to work closely with Waitrose and their design agency to ensure that users’ needs were always at the heart of the prototype and site development.


Following the launch, the site performed exceptionally well, with sales and conversion significantly improved on the old offering. The site was also very positively received, with many customers welcoming the new features and functionality that we helped refine in our user testing.

“The work we did with Web Usability was invaluable in terms of informing improvements and changes to the new features and functionality we were developing. It gave us the confidence and reassurance we needed to know that what we were doing would be right first time and would give users a great experience of Waitrose, whether they were new or existing customers”

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