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2017

CASE STUDY: My Digital Journey, a web app for SMEs

+ MVP, Brand Development, Web App Design, Website
Some of my custom illustrations
Each character represents their journey so far
7 minute read

Some context about the project

My Digital Journey was born out of The Growth Hub in Gloucester. Having won a government grant, My Digital Journey was looking to make something fun, informational, and easy to use for small businesses all over the UK.

The premise was this: most small businesses are wandering lost in a world full of changing technology, and My Digital Journey can help people navigate this technology terrain through meetups, talks, and amassing a huge collection of free online resources for small businesses. Making UK businesses stronger in turn will make the whole of the UK stronger.

This was a small group project. My role was UX/UI designer and user research. I worked directly with CEO Tristan Wilkinson, Project Manager James Brown, User Researcher Kate Ainscough, and Developer Chris Steel.

Services provided:

  • User Research
  • Discovery Phase
  • Wireframes
  • Brand development
  • UI design
  • Website design and development
  • Illustrations

User research

It was important to find out the most important needs of small businesses in the UK. It was paramount that we determine their awareness of digital technology and how important they thought it was to the improvement of their company. Being conscious that time is the most valuable asset of any business owner, we crafted a concise questionnaire that we used over the phone with several SMEs across the UK.

After talking to several SMEs and finding out their needs, we crafted our own online questionnaire. We split the My Digital Journey online questionnaire into six sections: Leadership & Culture, Technology, Product Development, Business Development, Process & Systems, and Marketing & Media. This would help us find any deficiencies in their company that we could fill with one-on-one, events or online resources.

User and job stories

I created user and job stories [when ____ (situation), I want to ____ (action/motivation), so that ____ (outcome)] based on our research collected from SMEs. I needed user info for both business owners and LEP admins.

Wireframes

I created wireframes to map out the SME questionnaire, results journey, and online content area for all viewports (desktop, tablet and mobile).

Creating My Digital Journey’s brand

I had the rare joy of making branding from scratch. I love it when I can be the creator of a brand from its initial stages to its final release and beyond.

Aside from the My Digital Journey branding, it was important that the web app be able to transition to white label easily, so I used minimal colour splashes and easy customisation; that way any Growth Hub etc. wanting to use our technology for their region could easily implement it.

I used Creative Commons imagery that had a sense of what a real business in the UK would look and feel like. The plan is to have photoshoots with some of the companies that have benefited best from My Digital Journey in the future to replace the CC imagery.

Grid system
Responsive 12 columns
8px baseline
Cerulean
#008eca
Lipstick
R227 / G28 / B121
#e31c79
Red-violet
R162 / G0 / B103
#a20067
R0 / G142 / B202
Color Palette
Secondary colors
Charcoal-grey
R55 / G67 / B67
#374343
Light-grey
R242 / G242 / B242
#f2f2f2

Typography

For this project I used Source Sans. It’s my go-to free Google font for a lot of cost-conscious digital products. It’s extremely versatile and has great readability at any size.

Illustrations

I had a lot of fun creating character illustrations to show how your SME is doing on its digital journey to becoming more technologically savvy - from Digital Wanderer to the Digitally Enlightened.

UI elements

I created colour customisable UI elements, since this product will be white label for most companies using My Digital Journey.

All imagery was hand-picked CC… important to have a sense of realism with the businesses
Various screenshots
from both the webapp and website

Launching the product and website

I designed and developed the My Digital Journey website using Webflow. It’s one of my favourite programs to create bespoke websites. I never use any template website designs; I create everything from scratch. This affords me so much more control over the design and development of the brand and website.

With Webflow's new animation functions I can create some amazing websites in a fraction of the usual time, and still have the ability to add complex and custom code if necessary. (I’m still waiting for any kickbacks from Webflow for all of the marketing I do for them 😎… call me)

Future iterations

Currently My Digital Journey is gathering more online digital content and will need to rethink the whole section once the amount of content grows to where it’s unsustainable. They’re doing constant testing and feedback, and I’m excited about how it grows and my involvement as it evolves over time.

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