Without question, ecommerce businesses rely on their website more than any other digital asset. Social media channels are great for promoting sales, interacting with customers, and directing traffic, but the most important conversions (and of course, sales) happen in the online store, aka, a brand’s website.
This is why Physician’s Formula, a beauty brand, contacted SPINX Digital. The company wanted to revamp its website, improve user experience, and create a more robust online presence. It was a tall order, but ultimately a successful one.
In fact, in an article on Media Post, digital think tank, L2 credited our work with Physician’s Formula as an example of how beauty brands can create a better user experience across all devices.
Physician’s Formula’s website was failing to stand out online. Competition among beauty brands was fierce, so the site needed to look more contemporary and cutting-edge.
The previous layout wasn’t necessarily bad. As a beauty brand, PE wisely chose to rely heavily on images and prominently display its products. However, the site was visually cluttered and somewhat difficult to navigate.
Here’s a screen grab of the company’s website before it contacted us (image courtesy of Wayback Machine).
As you can see, there was a lot of information included in a relatively small amount of space. The user was presented with many options and distracted by bright colors.
In addition to being a bit confusing on first glance, the design also went against current trends. It embraced a minimalist philosophy, but failed to go all the way with it. The home page displayed a central, changing image, but it was filled with copy of various fonts and colors, and even included a secondary picture.
Most importantly, the poor user experience was driving people away prematurely, and hurting conversion rates.
Additionally, Physician’s Formula’s social media presence was similarly unfocused. It had a Facebook page, but no strategy behind it. Plus, the company was failing to use the social network to drive traffic to its website.
As SPINX began to formulate a plan for Physician’s Formula, we focused on 4 major points:
- Overhaul website design
- Improve user experience
- Go mobile
- Tighten connection between digital properties
Overhaul website design
Aesthetically, we turned the brand into a major player in the beauty industry through a more minimalist web design. We kept the image carousel on the home page, but simplified each individual image.
By making the pictures wider and removing excess copy, we emphasized the models and the products. The result was a bolder visual experience for the user.
Additionally, we removed the left column of page links altogether, as the copy and varied colors provided too much of a distraction. Focusing on only the most important pages, we spaced out their titles horizontally across the top, and above the central image.
We also moved the other important but less attention-grabbing product info below the fold.
Improve user experience
If you want to boost conversions (i.e., desired actions that you want users to take) on your website, you need to create an easy user experience.
Through an analysis of Physician’s Formula’s website, we concluded that users were abandoning pages and failing to find their desired products due to non-intuitive site features. To make things easier on shoppers, we used visual cues to call attention to important sections, and improved the ability for people to search.
While improving users’ desktop experience was a high priority, we knew that we couldn’t exclude the mobile market either.
According to the Media Post article mentioned above, mobile devices now account for 39% of search for beauty brands. This number is up from 30% in 2013, and explains why 43% of beauty companies have responsive sites.
Ecommerce only continues to thrive on tablets and smartphones. Ignoring a user-friendly mobile site for Physician’s Formula just wasn’t an option.
Tighten connection between digital properties
Prior to the re-design, Physicians’ Formula had a Facebook presence, but wasn’t taking full advantage of it. We saw an opportunity here, as the social network still plays a huge role in B2C marketing. In fact, recent studies show that Facebook accounts for over 23% of overall website traffic referrals.
To build traffic to the newly designed website, we decided to play on PE’s social popularity and moved all of its contests from a separate micro site to Facebook. This strengthened the connection between its 2 major online outposts.
In addition, SPINX created 3 Facebook apps to facilitate the most popular contests and promotions, and increased Likes from 45,000 to 175,000.
In the end, our work with Physician’s Formula paid off.
To find out how we can transform your beauty brand, ecommerce or B2B website, contact SPINX Digital today.