Encouraging the staycation nation.
Haulfryn were getting ready to reopen their doors with a brand new set of websites with holiday booking ability and inquiries about purchasing residential and holiday homes.
Haulfryn’s business needs
Haulfryn needed a partner agency to help them redefine their digital presence. This included creating websites for their Residential sales, Holidays and Holiday homes sales offerings. They also had a number of satellite sites that needed to be designed for surrounding parts to their business. These included their: Fitness, Food & Beverage, Spa & Wellness & upper market offerings.
Research & discovery
Digging deep into user behaviour patterns.
We started the Haulfryn design process from the bottom; performing a competitor analysis, looking at traffic through their current site map, performing a card sort exercise and then digging deep into their analytics to see what the current trends were.
Following from this discovery we then mapped user personas from our findings for holidays, holiday homes and residential sites. We created 3 personas for each site with each one representing a different demographic. From here, we could then use their key tasks to start creating new sitemaps, user journeys and wireframes.
Card sort & Information architecture
Ranking content and discussing priorities
By understanding the overlapping needs of holiday makers and holiday home sales users, we decided to streamline these offerings into one site. This created opportunity for shared content, cross-selling and a consistent joined-up message. With each holiday location providing slightly different services, the structure could not follow a one-size fits all approach. Flexibility was crucial both in the information architecture and page structure. Allowing users to search within Haulfryn’s site by individual preferences was a huge step forward and our technical discussions and decisions, anchored in the personas, helped us define the best set of search, filter and sort options. The most powerful change within the structure was about keeping users on the Haulfryn Holidays site for the entire selection stage of the booking journey, whereas before they diverted to a third party mid-selection. This created a lot more certainty for users, earlier and reduced user frustration.
Flexibility was also important for the satellite sites where we balanced individual site requirements with the streamlining of business processes.
Wider architectural considerations, which we worked closely with Haulfryn alongside to ensure the sites are future proofed, included: future additional aggregators, considerable increase in content and the regrading of property categories. We also worked closely with their SEO partner as we finalised the IA to ensure a balance between users’ need and SEO performance.
Wireframing & Prototyping
Bringing it to life
After defining the site maps, we moved on to the low fi wireframing stage creating layouts, components and user flows for all the sites. Designing for both mobile & desktop, this is where we established a visual guide for how they would look.
Testing that the user journey is smooth
We tied the wireframe screens together, prototyping every button, action and transition to get a feel for the real life product. This was beneficial as we were able to test the flows of the product, ensuring it was efficient, smooth and easy to use.
Validating our thinking
To finetune our solution, we tested the prototype with real users. We wanted to discover how well users understood the key page elements and how they would instinctively interact with – and journey through – the pages.
One thing that was super important to test was how well we enabled users to switch mindsets between holidays and holiday homes, now that these sites had been combined. We wanted to be sure users could orientate themselves and not accidentally go down the wrong path and become confused. We designed the questions to explore this (as well as to test the persona key tasks) and the results conclusively showed that users clearly understood the two main branches of holiday content.
It was very insightful which we iterated upon. The testing process helped us to refine some of the taxonomies, include additional call to action buttons for clarification and further refine the filter – there was also some useful content feedback for Haulfryn!
Down to the details
After nailing the skeleton of the sites, we then moved onto the high fidelity stage, introducing the refreshed brand palette, typography and refining details such as imagery and components.