Independent Design Company Upwell Hacks IKEA to Test New Product

By Erik Oster Comment

Independent design company Upwell wanted to test their new product, Walhub — “a functional switch cover that provides storage for the objects that often come and go with you” (think keys, mail, scarves, etc.) — so a member of their team named Justin Porcano dressed up as an IKEA worker and left their product on display, complete with identification tags to make it seem like a real IKEA product.

Justin found that many shoppers were interested in the product, taking it the checkout counter with them and predictably confusing IKEA register workers. The Upwell crew recorded the whole ruse, from setup to customer feedback. It’s well worth a watch for the ballsiness of the idea, and the success of the execution. Upwell learned that there’s an audience for their product in a large retail environment, and everyone learned that it’s easy to pose as an IKEA employee and leave products around the store. Forget about demographic research and surveys, this is how you test your latest design. Other independent design companies should be taking notes. If you’re interested in purchasing a Walhub (and it is a pretty nifty little item), you can choose from two designs over at