We took wireframing a few steps further.
It’s easy to create dozens of wireframe iterations by swapping around rows of stacked boxes and having a client to choose a direction before presenting any creative. Instead, we used our competitive audit and our understanding of Lowe’s objectives to carefully consider what the goals of each wireframe would be before drawing them up. All of our layouts included everything they wanted, dialed up or dialed down to create three distinct, engaging layouts.
We presented our wireframes with our first round of creative. Lowe’s was gearing up for an allen + roth photo shoot and did not yet have content for the site. We translated the wireframes into three home page designs and used allen + roth brand elements, aspirational photography, and content that we felt was in line with the allen + roth brand.
Although it was just the start of the website, Lowe’s was excited to see their big picture objectives in context. They chose a wireframe direction and listened to our recommendations for how to style and shoot their product and lifestyle photography. Rather than forcing existing brand assets into the site design, the Lowe’s team used our placeholder images as creative direction for their allen + roth photo shoot. The end result was fresh, compelling images that work within the new site design and strengthen their brand voice. Lowe’s felt confident in the wireframe direction they chose, and we were able to receive early creative feedback which made later rounds of review efficient and straightforward.
We streamlined their brand assets for the digital landscape.
Logos, colors, and other design elements are essential for setting the correct tone for a brand. When creating a website, it is imperative for visuals to be strong in their simplicity. allen + roth had brand assets and guidelines, but they were geared toward product packaging and in-store print design. We combed through their existing brand assets and limited the usage and combination of elements to create a much smaller branding toolkit for the website. Without editing a single design file, we established a more modern, refined, and digitally-focused aesthetic for allen + roth. It’s a subtle and simple step that strengthens the overall site design and allows the content to shine.
After creating the brand assets, we dropped them into Brandcast’s content drawer (the centralized asset repository) for us to use on the website. When Lowe’s needs to access their most up-to-date brand files, they can find them in the content drawer.
We balanced brand awareness with business goals.
A retailer’s primary goal is to generate revenue by leading site visitors down a path to purchase products. Lowe’s wants allen + roth to be a lifestyle destination for ideas and inspiration, but it is not an exception to the rule of retail. They needed to sprinkle in opportunities to shop throughout the site so that the allen + roth website will directly contribute to Lowe’s bottom line. On the other hand, if the customer journey feels too "salesy" or contrived, the brand will lose its credibility and appear inauthentic, missing the opportunity to establish trust with its audience. Again, design comes into play. Rather than screaming “SHOP NOW” dozens of times, we came up with creative solutions that balance marketing messages and opportunities to shop with lifestyle content.