Timeline: 6 weeks
Platform: Responsive Website
Role: UX/UI Designer
Townsend Showroom is a reseller that focuses on providing their customers with luxury products for kitchen and bathroom renovations (more focus on baths).
Homeowners that have and are currently renovating their bathrooms have had problems when they visited the website as it does not have much information about the products, educate visitors on what type of materials they will need, or the ability to purchase products online.
To start, I had to understand the problem space, who the users are, and analyze the competitive landscape so I can better help redesign the website. With a conversation with the owner of the showroom, who also deals with sales and interacts with customers personally, we were able to understand the high level goals for this project:
After conducting user research by interviewing participants in our target market and synthesizing the findings, we were able to learn that users had trouble finding a one-stop shop where they can learn, find inspiration, browse through a wide variety of plumbing products, and shop online. The issue with the existing website is that users were disheartened by the design of the website, lack of information, and the inability to purchase products from the comfort of their own home.
“I would like to see more variety of products and styles”
“It’s hard to find information that I need. I would like to find it quickly.”
“If I can find everything I need from one place, and their prices are comparable, then I would buy everything there.”
The goals for this analysis was to determine what features, information, and other factors our competitors are using in order for us to distinguish and think about what to incorporate with what aligns with our user research.
Corporate competitors: The Home Depot, Ferguson, and Quality Bath.
Family Owned Showrooms: Excel Shower & Bath and New Century Town & Kitchen.
The biggest difference between the corporate competitors and the showrooms is that the bigger companies have the capability of adding an online store feature for users to shop around, which in turn enables them to add more features such as categories and filters. Smaller showrooms’ websites are typically acting as online business cards which only shows a limited amount of information about the business.
On the other hand, both Ferguson and Quality Bath have an acting showroom for users to visit if they want to physically see the products.
According to the user research I conducted, all participants mentioned that they typically do some research on “how-tos”, necessary components, instruction manuals, etc. Even though most of the times they are hiring contractors to take care of the hard work, they still feel the need to educate themselves to be well versed enough for knowing what to purchase in terms of functionality and style.
Having this type of information on a website along with features that eases our target users problems will be advantageous in both driving traffic to the website as well as keeping users engaged.
Just as how educational content is important to have, photo inspirations of finished projects or set-ups have a strong impact for users to get ideas their current projects, or even inspiring them to start a project.
Homeowners need a one-stop shop where they can find inspiration, information, and purchase materials to complete their bathroom renovations.
We believe that redesigning the website for homeowners by adding an online store, homeowners will be able to search and browse through the selection of products we can offer. Also, by providing supporting content such as how-to guides, a photo gallery of finished projects and a virtual tour of the showroom, homeowners will feel motivated and eager to get started on their renovations.
We will know this to be true when we see an increase of visits to the showroom.
After conducting user research and doing competitive analysis, we started sketching and brainstorming on how to better redesign the website while including all these new features. Sketching fast and dirty, making sure to get early feedback, and iterate from there.
The main takeaway we had from user testing was that users were not using the "add to cart" button underneath the thumbnails at all. Since all of these items luxury fixtures, the prices are incredible higher than most where you can purchase elsewhere. Users were compelled to go to the product page and read the descriptions and see other photos before deciding to add to cart. Which is why the buttons were removed and added the "Featured Products" section on the home page to push fixtures that are more likely to be sold.
The products on the design were only a small variety of what the showroom sells. As the showroom starts adding and selling more products that are not currently in their inventory, I would like continue working on the filtering system.
Thank you for taking the time to read through this case study. The process for each project will differ depending on the situation, project scope, and what the main problem we are trying to solve is.