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Custom design for when you need more than an ‘off the shelf’ solution

eCommerce for research

There will usually come a time in every website’s life when it’s no longer fit for purpose, typically because either technology, or your business, has moved on.

There may also come a time when you need more functionality than an ‘off the shelf’ solution can provide.

This was the case recently for our longstanding customers, PI-KEM, who needed a much more complex and flexible website to meet the changing needs of their business.

Web design and web development is not a static, one-off service. It’s a fluid process that has to be re-evaluated as technology advances and businesses grow and develop. Many of our customers stay with us for years on end because we grow with them by ensuring their website is always performing to the benefit of the business.

What the company needed from its website

PI-KEM is a specialist supplier of advanced materials and equipment for science, research and industry. Although the company is based in the UK, it supplies its materials worldwide.

The company needed a website that was more functional, flexible and user friendly. They needed extra security and additional features across the e-commerce, payment, blog and gallery functions.

Custom design

At Cocoonfxmedia we are not afraid of going off grid to provide a company with a custom design website that has the functionality and capacity that it needs. This is exactly what we did for PI-KEM. We built the business a brand new website from the ground up, within a flexible framework that can easily be added to and adapted at any time as the business continues to grow.

Not only does this mean the website is totally unique to PI-KEM, it is also future proof. By building it from scratch within a new framework, we will be able to develop and install additional features at any time. This means something which would previously have taken weeks to achieve will now take only a matter of days.

Streamlining processes

A major element of the PI-KEM web development project was to create a website that was much easier for the client to use and manage. Previously the people at PI-KEM had to log in to different platforms to manage different areas of the website, such as the e-commerce section, blog and gallery.

These processes have all been streamlined so that everything can now be uploaded from one area.

Uploading products to the store was previously a long-winded and unreliable process, as it was not originally built to cope with the range that is available today.

This has now been vastly improved so that products and price updates, such as increases or reductions, can now be applied on mass, in one go.

The result of all these new features is greatly-improved, streamlined processes which save masses of time for the client.

Improving the user experience

Another important element of the custom design process was to improve the user experience. User expectations are high these days, to the point that people will likely leave your website in a matter of seconds if they don’t find what they are looking for or can’t easily navigate their way round.

Improving the user experience can’t just be based on guesswork. To do it, we first take the time to understand who your users are and what they are looking for.

We looked at the complete PI-KEM user journey and, through our research, were able to identify two distinct user personas; one who is academic, looking for technical information to inform their buying decision process and one who knows exactly what they are looking for and wants to head straight to it.

By understanding these profiles, we were able to make sure the website works for all its users.

We introduced a range of improvements including fresh new branding, easier navigation, improved mobile responsiveness and the ability to request more information about specific products from the product page itself, rather than going to another screen and filling in a contact request form.

Users can easily locate the part they want to buy and payment is straight-forward.

Results

The results of the new website have been almost immediate. In a very short time frame, the average time spent on site has increased by 85%, alongside a 37% increase in the number of pages being viewed.

If you have complex requirements and need a custom design, contact the Cocoonfxmedia team for more information. We love a good challenge!