Syncrony Digital simulates a UX of instore browsing for the new Bella Bathrooms website
One of the key considerations in developing and designing the new ecommerce website for Bella Bathrooms & Tiles, was creating a user interface (UI) which is easy to navigate, keeping user needs at the centre of the design process. Focussing on user experience (UX), ecommerce site developer specialists, Syncrony Digital developed a user-friendly environment, creating an equivalent appeal to the instore showroom.
“Our objective was to develop an uncluttered design which combines simplicity with a luxe feel, stirring the user both visually and emotionally,” says Howard Rybko, CEO of Syncrony Digital. He adds that this was complemented by upgrading the backend infrastructure to Magento 2, integrating this with the ERP of the company.
Clear, fluid navigation enriches UX, creating an intuitive shopping journey that facilitates engagement with the content, making the required information accessible and easier to navigate and understand.
With UX as the central focus, the following key elements were taken into account in the UI design process:
Cohesive imagery Essential for Ecommerce Success
“We wanted images to tell a story, creating a memorable, unique experience which resonates with our visitors, while simplifying their shopping experience in the process,” says Deon Katzen, Director at Bella Bathrooms & Tiles. “The objective was to have a similar look and feel similar to instore browsing.”
To achieve this, Syncrony used a neutral palette interspersed with a few warmer shades for the home page, painting a scene of bathroom relaxation. These evocative images inspire a sense of luxury: the standalone bathtub and patterned floor tiling take centre stage, directing user focus while effortlessly communicating the different categories to guide navigation.
New elements of the upgraded site provide interactive opportunities.
“Interactive elements encourage engagement with the content, enabling shoppers to discover and explore Bella’s product selection,” says Katzen.
Visitors can filter their selection of products through specifications such as finish, range colour and brand. This enhances UX, making it easy for users to make decisions without having to spend a lot of effort searching for what they need. An auto complete functionality of the search box supports this further with a dropdown menu of relevant products adding to effortless navigation by anticipating the user’s requirements.
Syncrony replicated the personalized touch of in store shopping through various customizations. User needs remain central to this UX strategy, creating an underlying cohesion by streamlining the design flow with customized elements. This is achieved through design consistency such as carrying through the pink hover over feature throughout the website, including it in small details like the vertical scrolling element which also changes from black to pink.
Additionally, customized tools such as the Tile Calculator, which enables the user to work out how many boxes of tiles are needed, invite further engagement.
“The aim is to meet the user’s needs at every point in their shopping journey, using features to supply the relevant content to support their decision making,” says Rybko.
Other customized features like the hover over boxes for each menu tab provide access to a comprehensive list of categories and icons in the drop down menus, enhancing UX with a visual and kinaesthetic experience.
The UI has a modern style with a minimalist look, keeping design elements simple. White space enables the visitor to easily digest and interact with content, while facilitating opportunities to pause, emulating in-store window shopping.
“The upgraded version is more comprehensive and appealing, refining UX to meet shopper expectations while enabling a seamless integration with our cloud-based ERP solution, automating processes like logistics and product tracking while effectively optimising client service and experience,” says Katzen.
Content is streamlined for optimal and engaging UX, with informative elements such as side menus guiding users to organically move through the different product and category options.
“The clean look promotes strategic design flow to ensure the intuitive shopping journey,” says Rybko. “This is particularly significant with an ecommerce site like Bella which has a visual and aesthetic emphasis. As this is inherent in bathware and decor, we focussed on the strategic use of uncluttered images and content to enable a UX that’s efficient and enjoyable,” concludes Rybko.