Case Study: Arrow Timber Framing

Rebranding a complex and nuanced design, and a new and simplified website

Craftsmanship meets Luxury

Arrow Timber Frame’s Owner came to MEQ because he wanted an improved design for his website and a new brand look.

For the brand, the client wanted to maintain an old-world feel, but in a way that communicated luxury. Luxe is often black and white, and very minimalist, but with this design, it was important to present the organic aspect of the timbers. Also, the current website was heavy with black, dark red, and dark gold, so it was time to lighten things up a bit and give the site a lighter, more professional feel. The client wanted to keep the red and gold, but we modified them a bit and introduced a gray-blue and dark brown. Those complimented the red and gold very well. Once the logo and branding guidelines were established, we started to work on the design for the website. 

Defining a user experience

The challenge for us was that the site was very complex as it contained volumes of content and imagery but without any clearly defined user experience. We didn’t know how to map a user experience based on the site copy alone – it didn’t inform the process. We commend this client for his devotion to customer education and fantastic imagery, which is pretty rare. However, all of the pieces needed to be tied together to create a customer journey.  Plus, the process of defining a hybrid timber frame project with a customer is complex and nuanced and that was yet to be fully defined. We needed to find a way to communicate important messages easily, so the site visitor could move forward through the site without feeling overwhelmed or lost. 

Once we had most of the copy in place we looked at all the analytics data and noticed patterns in how the site was used and what pages were referenced. This told a big story about the primary information customers sought, going through eight web pages with three pages repeating over and over. However, those pages were in no way connected to the main navigation and were only accessible from links on content pages. Those topics became front and center on the home page with easy access to one another.

With the new design, the user would never have to hit the back button again, which is penalized by search engines because you have not fulfilled search intent. Yes, the back button will hurt your SEO because you have not fulfilled the user intent for the search. The new design connected all of that critical data in a way that provided fast and easy access without ever having to use the back button.

In addition, we worked with Arrow to present some of the amazing timber designs and illustrations in a new way to reduce excessive scrolling and overwhelm, We also elevated entry points to content for three different target markets. They had a user experience tailored to their requirements and needs, plus it gave space on the site for images to breathe more so the designs could be more fully enjoyed. A lot of page copy that was storytelling was moved to the blog. 

Arrow also relied on MEQ’s content and design expertise for their internal training manual, various design needs, and design and editing of the hardback tabletop book ‘The Art of Hybrid Timber Framing.’ They also engaged MEQ for Public Relations work which resulted in 9% customer growth. 

Now,  Arrow enjoys a stunning brand to match the big, bold and beautiful timbers they make.

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