HelPing a Dutch retailer nudge shoPpeRs into better food choices using behavioural pRototyping

  • Client
  • Albert Heijn, Zaandam
  • Project
  • The Recipe Project
  • Filed under
  • Nudging, Retail, Service Design

Albert Heijn is one of the largest retail chains in The Netherlands. They are dedicated to helping their customers make more healthy food choices. Next to launching health-conscious product lines, they also wanted to tap into the actual buying behaviour of shoppers in the fruit & vegetables department.

SUE was asked to help nudge shoppers into making more varied food choices. We developed, produced and prototyped an in-store recipe booth using behavioural insights and a smart choice architecture. 54% of shoppers printed our new-school recipes, directly influencing more shopping basket variety.

Our contributions


  • Field Study i
  • Consumer Interview


  • Concept development i
  • Design & copywriting i
  • Persuasion Design
  • Prototyping
  • Analytics


  • Conversion strategy
  • Reporting

The first mood driven recipe booth

Who says making your daily food decisions has to be a hassle or boring? SUE developed an interactive Recipe Booth that makes you pick recipes based on your food mood. Giving you two simple choices: “I want to eat this” or “I don’t want to eat this” after suggesting to you a consumer need based recipe. Think “I want a Cheese Coma” or “I need an Anti-Hangover Burger” or “I need to impress my Girlfriend”.

The project was very inspiring, professional and surprising. Jacco Baars (Innovation Developer, Ahold)

Behavioural first design

Our behavioural research showed that most people are making on the spot dinner decisions in the supermarket, but are totally uninspired. Hence falling back to their standard repertoire of 5-7 rotating recipes. Recipe cards are not giving them any answers, as they are not designed on the premises of human-centred design, but on the premises of recipe design. Our Recipe Booth approached things a different way, putting human needs first.

Success factors

The project was developed in close cooperation with the Innovation Department of Albert Heijn. We chose an experimental set-up. Instead of focusing on slick design, we started prototyping with a minimal viable product. Choosing one pilot store and monitoring actual consumer behaviour on a daily basis; making adaptations overnight to figure out the optimal mix of copy, design and interaction that would nudge consumer behaviour in the right direction.

Instead of focusing on slick design, we started prototyping with a minimal viable product.


A two week roll-out of the Recipe Booth showed very active engagement.

Active users


Recipes watched


Recipes printed


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  • 's-Gravenhekje 1a
  • 1011TG Amsterdam
  • The Netherlands


  • (+31) 20 223 46 26

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