I currently work full-time as a Sr. Web Designer at YDesign Group, primarily focussing on the sub-brand YLighting. YLighting is an online retailer, specializing in modern light fixtures from some of the best brands and designers in the world.
At various points, my responsibilities have included the design and development of home pages, emails, promotional landing pages, Wordpress blogs, print catalogs, and others. I've created and maintained a promotional design system to unify site marketing and email, supported UX and UI initiatives, led a transition to responsive design across all channels, managed designers and contractors, and much more.
When YDesign Group committed to responsive design across their ecommerce sites, it came time to redesign the homepage. Rather than attempt to compress our existing design onto a phone screen, I proposed a more thoughtful, mobile-first approach that ultimately won out. Over the course of the project, the team and I were able to deliver a solution that provided more value to the user, more flexibility for the business, and a more full experience overall.
The existing YLighting and YLiving homepage designs were functional, but incredibly restrictive and rigid. Featuring a simple carousel, and exactly three secondary messages, this design consistently limited the scope and type of messages possible on the homepage. Moreover, from a branding perspective, it failed to tell the story of the brand and build the kind of authority a user wants to feel when considering a luxury purchase.
After many cross-functional conversations and brainstorming sessions (and a lot of hand-drawn wireframes), I proposed a modular, cartridge-based system. Responsive and flexible, this design would give us the tools we needed to deliver compelling messages week to week, in whatever form made the most sense for our content.
By breaking the homepage down into multiple, repeatable components, the homepage could expand and contract with the needs of a busy promotional calendar. A consistent framework, however, would ensure that YLighting and YLiving shared a common language and brand identity, even with separate designers working on each. Best of all, we had learned from our email marketing channels that our users were engaging with content down to the bottom of very long email blasts. The homepage would now be able leverage that engagement with a comparable and compelling homepage experience.
The final design was a hit both internally, and with our customers. Internal teams loved the ability to share more messaging week to week, and the ability to tell more of the brand story through brand and designer features. Our users were presented with more plentiful and diverse content on our homepage, and engagement on compelling messages was evident down to the bottom of the page with very little scroll fatigue. Even better, our newsletter subscribers were finally able to experience a seamless transition from our (already responsive) emails to our homepage.
For this project, I was fortunate enough to be accountable for all cross-functional coordination, wireframing, mockups, development, and all of the requisite approvals and pitches. While the design has evolved over time, introducing more specific and custom cartridges (which were also my deliverables), the foundations of this project have remained.