I was hired as a freelance consultant through IQ agency in Atlanta, to perform a detailed audit and user experience for the redesign of HotSpring Spas, which included their back-end dealer network. The company owned by, Watkins International, is the best selling spa brand in the United States. The spas are not sold direct-to-consumer, but rather through a dealer network. The site needed a revamped home to showcase it’s products and provide an experience that would send leads to qualified dealers.
User Experience Lead
Shopper Journey Modeling
Shannon Delayney, UX Director
Rachel Peters, User Experience
The biggest issue not related to technology on the site was lack of information, inspiration, and visualization of the spas. There was very little content pointing to the benefits of various functions, such as the jets, seats, etc. Nor was there any sort of comparison engine to understand why shoppers should upgrade.
When you’re the number one spa manufacturer, you set the bar for search. It’s telling when there was little to no information in search in how to structure the taxonomy for product search and filters. Could we create one from scratch?
I knew my findings would cause the audience to gasp. To fix the experience, they would have to create product imagery from scratch. I wondered if scoring method I used would convince them to spend the money with IQ to cover such a large effort.
Though I didn’t have much to do with the actual development of the site, I’m proud to say there wasn’t one suggestion of mine, they didn’t take into account.
Between the lack of responsiveness, zero metrics or analytics to gauge effectiveness from a baseline, the only way to analyze the resutls was through dealer feedback.
I think any busines, design, or development agency can attest for the need to complete a full user experience audit before taking on a redesign. It not only helps with highlighting the critical fixes, it helps with scoping and resourcing.
Included are a few work samples to help showcase project efforts.
You can see from the sample that IQ created an entire experience around the products, highlighting benefits, specs, adding videos and information relevant to make a purchase decision. I’m very proud of that they were able to take my feedback and make something beautiful.
Because I signed a non-disclosure, I can’t can’t include the entire report. But I can give you some highlights in a fancy image showcase.
“Aimee is a perfectly well rounded strategy machine! She seeks to understand the highest order business objectives so that the strategies she develops are sound and drive results. Her user-centered focus allows her to insure the experiences she creates are spot in for the consumer target. She is an incredibly efficient worker who brings depth to any project. Aimee is able to work alone or provide strong leadership to project teams. We have worked together for over two years now, and she is always a first consideration when putting together a team.”
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