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Ben Nadel at cf.Objective() 2009 (Minneapolis, MN) with: David Epler
Ben Nadel at cf.Objective() 2009 (Minneapolis, MN) with: David Epler ( @dcepler )

The User Experience (UX) Of The Rogue Fitness Shipping Map

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Two years ago, I purchased a beautiful, black-zinc Ohio Power Bar barbell from Rogue Fitness in Columbus Ohio. And, like most fitness equipment, the Ohio Power Bar is large and heavy - about 86-inches long and 45-pounds in this case. So, you can imagine that shipping such an item would require more time and money than most purchases. And, given the fact that I was about to start building my very own home gym, there was a lot of excitement and anticipation around this particular order. Which is why I was so pleased by the user experience (UX) of the Rogue Fitness checkout process.

With a large item like a barbell, your shipping options are fairly limited (at least on the Rogue Fitness site). You either drive to the factory itself; or, you have "standard" shipping. And, in order to give you a sense of how long the standard shipping takes, the Rogue Fitness checkout process presents you with this map:


 
 
 

 
Rogue Fitness shipping map.  
 
 
 

As a product designer, I absolutely love this map. There's something magical here in the way this map takes a traditionally-abstract concept like "shipping time" and turns it into a sensual experience. This maps liberates the logic of shipping from its blackbox and shows it to the customer in a way that they can understand: the farther you get from Columbus, OH, the longer shipping takes. This statement is obvious on its face; but, the codification of this statement in a physical, palpable dimension makes it a very pleasing user experience (UX).

We're all familiar with the idiom, "a picture is worth a thousand words." Which is certainly true. But, I think the overall effect of such a picture is magnified when it goes beyond the "what" of data and begins to impart the "why". As product designers, we don't always have this opportunity; but, if we can find simple ways to imbue our users with a sense of understanding - to let them peer behind the curtain in a way that isn't overwhelming - we can begin to empower them. And, an empowered user is a happy user.

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I believe in love. I believe in compassion. I believe in human rights. I believe that we can afford to give more of these gifts to the world around us because it costs us nothing to be decent and kind and understanding. And, I want you to know that when you land on this site, you are accepted for who you are, no matter how you identify, what truths you live, or whatever kind of goofy shit makes you feel alive! Rock on with your bad self!
Ben Nadel