It all began with a simple request.
Client “We need a new website”
Quirk “Deffo, but why?”
It was true, the Savanna Cider site was outdated, the brand had a new look and feel, new markets and variants had emerged, they were on the verge of launching new packaging and, well, it was 2015. Totes legit, but of course we needed a solid strategy to guide the project. And so began the process of unpacking the brief, workshopping with the client and internal stakeholders and the development of a strategic summary framework that used various considerations to inform objectives and ultimately allow us to create a vision for the website.
At the end of the day, we knew that we needed to upgrade the look and feel, enable RM, create an overarching channel hub, create excitement about and launch the new bottle, reimagine the website (but make sure it was mobile focused) and cater for a bunch of different markets – not a small task.
But this post is less about what we developed and more about our approach to developing it. At Quirk, we’ve learnt that complex projects need focus, a solid strategy and clear KPIs, an agile approach and clean communication lines. So a core team comprised of an art director, designer, front and back end engineer, UX specialist and copywriter moved into a war room fondly referred to as the Yellow Submarine.
Over the next few weeks we filled the walls with scamps, inspiration, timelines, to do lists, questions and art direction. But how we would decide to use technology to aid our development was the most exciting part for me. From the start we decided that the need for a front facing CMS would be integral as we required a really simple way for all of the different parties responsible to produce and publish content for Savanna’s content across various regions. We also knew that we weren’t interested in templates per say, but rather pieces of functionality and content that we could pick and choose to use where we saw fit. So we developed a range of widgets based on the site goals and art direction. The vast majority of the site is built using these editable widgets which makes future development or changes exceptionally easy.
This approach meant that the typical process of developing a spec, getting wireframes, writing a copy deck, then designing, then building, then testing (and all the rounds of feedback that come in between each one of those steps), then iterating was eliminated. Being physically close (sometimes a bit too close) gave the team focus and allowed for discussion, heated arguments, iteration and ultimately a better product.
Every morning we had a stand up meeting with fly by visitors from strategy, project management and client service where we reviewed what we’d done the day before, what we were doing that day and what was holding us back. Our client also came in weekly to review what we’d done and answer any questions. Because by the end of the project our client had been so close to work, client feedback was minimal and the internal team testing feedback (aka the biggest ball ache of any project) was almost zero.
At the end of the day, we’d produced 14 websites (one of which was in Portuguese), launched a pack upgrade campaign and walked away, not only having not killed one another, but with a deeper understanding of each others specialties and some serious knowledge to take into future projects.
But enough about that, check out the work: www.savannacider.com
But what of the results?
- The website is building strong loyalty among consumers, the retention rate has increased by 209%.
- There’s a very strong sign up conversion rate on the site – 39% higher than on the old site.
- Share of sessions on mobile devices has increased from 19% on the old site to 27% on the new adaptive site that was built to be mobile first.