Introducing POLLIFY: An interactive, physical polling device to collect real-time customer input at brick-and-mortar retailers
Want real-time customer input on what products you should be stocking? Perfect for corner stores, restaurants, and other brick-and-mortar retail locations, Pollify provides insight on shopper preferences while making your customers feel like their opinions matter.
Pollify is an Arduino-powered product that leverages a TFT Touchscreen along with pushbuttons and LEDs. The physical form is designed to be large enough to catch customers’ attention, but small enough to be easily placed and secured in various locations around the store. We recommend placing multiple Pollify pop-ups at various locations around your store.
You can make your own Pollify pop-up by following my Instructables Tutorial.
Further notes on the physical form:
- The physical form can contain an internal battery pack, or can be designed with an external power cord.
- For retail locations, especially if placing away from a wall, not having to rely on plugging into a power socket can be helpful; the external power cord can also plug into an external battery pack (which can be secured in a way so as not to be stolen). This is one element that would required further R&D.
- Additionally, the screen would benefit from being slightly larger for legibility, especially for anyone with trouble seeing up close.
- I built my two prototypes using foam board, and my final form with acrylic. I think acrylic suits the product well, and for overall look, the buttons should also be made of acrylic or a plastic material, rather than the clay I ultimately used. If the context were a kids store or classroom, then I would keep the clay buttons and also make the rest of the form out of clay or something that mimics its rounder texture. I adhered things together with either superglue or glue dots, which ended up being very handy for adhering pieces that I still wanted to be able to detach.
- If I built this again, I would either (1) make an acrylic prototype and/or (2) be more vigilant (!!) about my measurements. I mis-measured the thickness of the acrylic, and this threw things off just the slightest. For designing instructions that could be exactly replicable, I would need to commit to certain specific measurements.
- For future iterations, I would definitely need to work much further on the form and making sure it can be taken apart (for repairs, for switching the SD card, etc). The buttons in this final form aren’t easily removable (in fact, the superglue actually glued one of the buttons to itself, to the point it stopped working), which would need to be changed. It would also be great if the box pieces had grooves so that they fit snugly into each other.
- Similar to the Happy-or-Not product, I think the simplicity of Pollify could be its greatest strength. Would people use it? Maybe, maybe not. Maybe in some contexts, maybe not in others. Would the input they provided actually prove valuable to a business? Maybe, maybe not. But in an era where we’re always getting bombarded via email and web to fill out surveys and give feedback, a simple, one-question IRL device—and with a satisfying button!—could be a breath of fresh air.
Initial Product Sketches & References