Redesign their online home to boost online user engagement and conversions

Ponsford

Development | Ecommerce Development | UX Design | Digital Marketing

The challenge

As a leading luxury furniture retailer, Ponsford was already a recognised brand both offline in their local area of Sheffield and online. However, they felt their existing website was limiting their potential to tap into a growing online consumer market.

Hosted on Magento 2, the existing site was tricky and time consuming to maintain and develop, making it challenging for them to make their customer shopping experience a key focal point within the site design.

Given our strong background in ecommerce development and digital marketing, they looked to us to provide a cohesive strategy that served two purposes, simultaneously. First, their need for a better functioning ecommerce platform; and secondly, an online marketing strategy designed to drive relevant traffic to the site and nurture their customers through the buying journey.

The process

Just like their sumptuous sofas, we made ourselves completely comfortable with the brand, by conducting a full review of their current website, online activities and business objectives to make sure any recommendations were designed to serve these.

The initial stages of the project in 2018 centred around a multi-faceted online marketing strategy that focused on driving high-value, relevant organic traffic to the Ponsford website. This included a targeted link building strategy, where we identified reputable, relevant third-party sites to publish high-value custom content to gain a steady stream of valuable and relevant backlinks.

In addition, we conducted product-centric keyword research to identify relevant, winnable keyword opportunities surrounding their key product collections. These keywords were implemented into an on-page optimisation strategy, updating key top-level category pages and subcategory pages to attract, inform and engage users in organic search. This was further bolstered through the creation of engaging, informative and keyword-optimised blog content to aid the site in ranking for relevant long-tail keywords in organic search.

Recognising additional opportunities to engage and showcase Ponsford products, we also supported and advised them on email marketing best practices and how to maximise the success of sale-focused campaigns. This included designing a custom email workflow that would better nurture and engage their audience throughout the marketing funnel and provide greater insights into consumer behaviour and remarketing opportunities to optimise sale conversions.

Exploring paid marketing opportunities, we also had an active and supporting role in implementing effective Google advertising activity through Pay-Per-Click campaigns - helping them to maximise paid advertising budgets and drive web sales of key products.

From a development and design point of view, we identified a more suitable ecommerce platform that allowed them to focus on growing their online customer base rather than continually addressing bugs.

Before migrating their existing site over, we mapped out their ideal customer journey, reimagining the existing site structure to provide a more logical and user-friendly interface. This included streamlined site navigation, intuitive product filters and more emphasis on inspirational visual assets throughout the site to deliver an online showroom shopping experience that rivaled industry-leading brands.

This emphasis on usability was mirrored in the backend development, ensuring each step of the user journey flowed seamlessly to improve user engagement and conversions. Taking into account challenges with payment options, delivery rules and merchandising, the overall design aimed to deliver a more cohesive customer journey that curated a tailored online shopping experience.

The result

Ensuring we had a full understanding of their business goals and objectives, as well as their digital assets through thorough analysis, meant we were able to devise a comprehensive digital strategy that reaped the benefits from day one.

Since our involvement in the project, Ponsford experienced a significant boost in online traffic and revenue through various channels. Thanks to a strategic approach to onsite content optimisation, as well as a targeted PPC and email marketing strategy, the site witnessed a 290% increase in revenue from 2018 to 2020 and 273% increase in traffic over the same period.

In particular, the PPC campaigns have resulted in impressive uplifts in both revenue and user engagement with 814% increase in clicks, 847% uplift in sessions and 686% increase in total revenue.

The design and development work allowed us to meet their objective to improve customer engagement and conversions on the site. By focusing on improving the user experience and simplifying the overall design, we were able to retain the brand's essence, simply fine-tuning it to deliver a seamless online shopping experience that mirrors how customer’s shop in store.

By introducing a streamlined site navigation that categorised collections in a more logical way, customers can browse the virtual store in a way that suits them. Using a combination of intuitive filters, aspirational imagery and detailed product descriptions, the overall design is more customer-centric and inline with competitors within the luxury furniture sector.

In addition, the new ecommerce platform delivers better backend functionality, ensuring Ponsford are able to effectively manage their inventory and site updates for their extensive and ever-changing product range with minimal fuss.

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