Lake Mary is a little town in Florida with big things to do. People enjoy being able to walk, participate, and shop at its downtown small businesses. Rene is my own online boutique. It's everything demanding clients could wish for. Dresses, handbags, accessories, hats, tops and more. Apparel from office ready to casual or date night at affordable prices.
I love to walk and ride a bicycle. Every Saturday, I take my nephew and niece to various Lake Mary playgrounds and around the City Hall area. They adore the park, the pizzeria, and my niece loves to browse the boutique windows and dream of her next outfit.
One morning, I had a conversation with my favorite boutique's manager. She briefly walked me through the store and shared a few historical details. I left, went home and browsed their website. The following morning, I asked the Web Page class professor if my next project could be my own online boutique. He replied with a smile and a nice yes. I smiled back and began my research. Inspired by the Lake Mary boutique Sophie and Tray, I started what is now my third portfolio web design, Rene.
Designer: I have to admit that as much as I liked that conversation and the boutique's designs, their website was crowded and full of colors.
The photos drove me crazy with so many styles and the background colors. Some accessories' photos are close-up shots while others have models showing the item. By the way, all models were blonde but I guess that's their predominant audience.
Designer: Why Rene? In the future, I would like to sell cloth for men too. Rene is a beautiful unisex name. It is catchy and is a "headache-free" solution for the plans to come. So why not?
Rene's mission is to build a loyal clientele by offering excellent customer service while selling trendy, well designed, high-quality clothing.
Designer: The loyal clientele is key to the success of Rene! Part of offering excellent service could be free shipping!
Cocktail, Day, Fit'n Flare, Bodycon
Bras, Off the Shoulder, Tanks, Long sleeves
Long, Short, Capri, Bermudas, Leggings
Jackets, Blazers, Sweaters, Ponchos
Handbags, Belts, Tights
Necklaces, Earrings, Rings, Bracelets
Sandals, Boots, Heels
Pamelas, Sun Hats, Beanies, Caps
Free shipping in the United States and Puerto Rico
Designer: I want a not so large variety of products at prices tough to beat in the boutique style world!
Designer: Popular items easily accessible on the website. High-resolution images and one color background for all items' photos.
RETURN AND EXCHANGE POLICY
Returns are accepted within thirty days from the shipped date.
Items marked as Clearance or Sale are final. Final Sale items cannot be returned.
Once the online return process is completed, you will be provided with a USPS Return Label with our mailing address.
A return form should be included in your package on the back of your invoice or you can download it.
For all the other items, to be eligible for a refund as described below, the merchandise must be returned unworn with tags and must be accompanied by a completed return form. Shoes must be returned in their original shoe box without damage to the box. Do NOT use the box as a shipping box. Shipping and handling on returned merchandise are nonrefundable. The customer is responsible for shipping costs. Please note that all defective item(s) are subject to inspection.
Refunds are processed within 10-14 business days of receiving your return. We'll send you an email confirmation when your refund has been issued.
Designer: A fair return policy! Full refund after inspection of the returned items to be put onto whatever payment type was used. Also, the customer is responsible for all return shipping costs. Not different from a typical online clothing store. Fair enough.
Tuesday – Thursday 10:00am -8:00pm
Designer: This is an online store which means 24-7. Having a phone number on your website guarantees trust. Users trust companies that have verbal communication on the other side of the computer.
The City of Lakes is located approximately 18 miles north of Orlando. It has well-planned residential neighborhoods, good schools, prominent businesses, recreational opportunities, outstanding restaurants and countless shopping opportunities. In 2015, the diverse resident population was estimated at 15,905 while daytime at more than 35,000. Florida has no State income tax, and the sales tax in Seminole County is 7 percent.
This suburban city offers something for everyone. From its restaurants to its small stores, it is a nice place to do my local research and start the online apparel boutique.
City of Lake Mary official website's home page headline reads: In Downtown Lake Mary, you’ll never ask "What can we do?". The big question here is "What do we do first?".
Designer: Come on sing with me: Oh! little town of Bethlehem. Sorry! Wrong story. Oh! little town of Lake Mary how cute you are. I like this two-street downtown area where people can live, work and play in a safe and friendly environment. The nights are full of life and lights, especially during Christmas time. All year long the park entertain visitors with an outdoor music system
Hmm, nice place. Maybe I'll make Rene a brick and mortar store too. That's all. Oh! wait, one more detail, the sites home page has a punctuation horror, I mean error. Oh nooooo!
Designer: I don't know much about engines but I do know that when you google "boutique Lake Mary" or "Lake Mary boutique", bang! First option. And that, my friends, is good. One more click after that and you have basic information at hand. You know where to call (telephone), how to drive (address) and when to visit (hours) the store.
Designer: This website has a home page that opens and a second later an overlay appears offering a ten percent discount on the next purchase. It is created to sign up and receive emails with offers, promotions and other commercial communication. The offer is unmistakably displayed at the footer.
Store: HERE! SIGN UP, SIGN UP, SIGN UP! You'll save two dollars on your NEXT purchase. We'll pack your inbox with millions of offers and promotions about making you BUY, BUY, BUY. Oh well, of course, you can always unsubscribe and/or keep shopping if and only if you click on the X. But remember, YOU WON'T RECEIVE THE DISCOUNT!
Designer: Although that ten percent is a very attractive incentive to add customers to your email's list, this designer, me, do not tolerate the invasive "thrown in your face" pop-ups like that. Can you feel the...Ok, no need to explain more.
(The designer takes a deep breath)
Designer: I mean can you hear that conversation between the user and the store? Not very uptown style nor very lady like.
Designer: Ah! Now we're talking! Nice photo on their FB cover. Posts are sweet, classy, clean and to the point. Stores and/or activities have short descriptions and catchy pics. While posts might not reflect much diversity, they remain true to the town's real users. Women are blonde thanks to Loreal 11.21, oops. Ok, some are born blondies. Men wear shorts and drive nice cars.
Designer: Event or not event? That is my question.
Let's talk about the "what's new link" because, obviously, I want to be wearing the latest fashion designs. When the user selected the "what's new" link I was taken to a blog? a cooking book? another website? Wait a minute. A website inside a website? That sounds like an Oscars movie!
Anyways, I was lost, which is not unusual for me but, hmm, not so sure that an online clothing store should have a coconut recipe on its "what's new" nav. Don't get me wrong, I L–o–v–e coconut and chocolate!
I think that Rene will have fun events but clearly displayed in a calendar.
Ninety-five percent (95%) of the local audience is female. The other five percent (5%) is male. Ages range eighteen and forty-five years old. Their income bracket fluctuates from $45,000 – $95,000. They own houses or condos, have bachelor's or higher degrees, and have small families (one – three kids).
Some of the recreational activities they enjoy are: the Farmer's Market, kids' sports at local courts or parks, holiday family celebrations, shopping at the mall department stores, watching movies at local theatres, and dining out or seating outside to enjoy the weather and a good old fashion ice cream flavor.
Designer: They are the doctors, doctors' wives, engineers, engineers' wives, high–techc business savvy, and their children. And yes, (5%) of the audience are husbands and boyfriends, buying for their wives, mothers, daughters, sisters, and fiancés.
Dr. Carol is an optometrist, mother of two teenager girls, and wife among other titles. She has owns her private optometric practice in Lake Mary since 2006. Carol is well known in the community for her sincerity, individualized attention, and dedication to her valued patients.
As a mother, she is on top of all girl's activities from school, parties, sports, and cultural, to lady-like trips to the mall. As a wife, she graciously shares home duties with her honey at all times. As a family, they usually spend time together at the beach and travel to Europe every now and then.
Her practice owns the latest technology and at home. Her children use ipads, laptops and watch the WUCF Create channel. They enjoy doing crafts and the youngest has designed bracelets since she was five years old.
Designer: Carol is not only my persona 1, she is my doctor. But, I'll let others finish her profile.
Sally: Every employee is very friendly, professional and helpful. Dr. Logan is personable, gentle and caring. A wonderful experience and I’m grateful I found her so close to home. She receives 5 stars!
Rob: I am impressed with professionalism and knowledge of everyone at Logan Eye Care. Thank you for being there for me.
PERSONA 2 and 3
Jennifer and Kimberly have been best friends since 2001. They met in college while studying business administration. Both were born and raised in Florida. Jenn is from Tampa and Kim from Orlando.
They are married to business men and each has two young kids. Neither Kim nor Jenn work outside the house.
Jenn: Is Danny coming to Tapas tonight?
Kim: He better be. I think his meeting is over at 6.
Jenn: Oh good. That'll give me time to drop the kids at mom's. Nancy can't babysit tonight.
Kim: Oh good good. So are you wearing the red dress tonight?
Jenn: I'm not sure. Thinking about shoes.
Kim: Well helloooo. Your black wedge heels girl? They'll look perfect.
Jenn: Oh yes. Then I'll wear the beige on Sunday.
Kim: Oops, that's Danny again. Hi, honey.
Designer: And so as the conversation continued, they finished drinking their ice tea.
Provide customers an easy way to shop online (few clicks and immediate product information access)
Use photos and a minimalistic design to obtain an European look where photos describe the brand without much descriptive content.
Google font Damion is a script face drawn by Max Kaufmann in 1936 for American Type Founders. It was chosen because of its simplicity, cozy, and casual look. It visually serves well for women or men.
Google font: Damion 'cursive'
Style - Regular
Designer: From the very first sketch, I wanted a modern casual font over an emblem or graphic mark logo. I'm confident that the use of Damion will promote lasting and strong public recognition among users and/or clients.
Google Font: Roboto
Weight 400, 300, 100italic, 300italic, 500, 400italic bold
Google Font: Damion
Designer: Sometimes there's not much to explain. Roboto has plenty of styles. It gives Rene a compact contemporary solid look while preserving the online store's unceremonious-local business professionalism.
rgb (178, 31, 54)
cmyk (21, 100, 81, 12)
rgb (74, 149, 209)
cmyk (0, 0, 0, 100)
rgb (255, 255, 255)
Designer: Black and white, simple. Bright red would've been cliche. Burgundy? Naaa, too funeral like. Together? Love, power, desire, "couples". Serves well for current customers and future male clientele.
The site map of an online store could be humongous. The list of pages seems endless. This planning tool is the beginning of a future complex site map that will contain 5 to 6 extra pages.
In this skeletal framework the items were our visual priority for obvious reasons. The purpose of the website is to sell. Based on the users' needs, the hierarchy of elements was defined and a five column grid was used to arrange the most important elements of each page.
The gallery pictures are a sample of Rene's second goal. Photographs should say it all. With a small description of the product (on hover effect), the models in the images visually will describe Rene's audience style.
- Home Page Slider
- Home Page Slider
- Home Page Slider
- Home Page Slider
- Home Page Slider
- Home Page Slider
- Accessories Handbags
- Accessories Handbags Handbags
- Dresses Cocktail
- Dresses Cocktail
- Dresses Hats
- Dresses Hats
Rene has few elements, like any other website, that allow the users to interact with the site. The navigation, sub-navigation, slider, and forms are some examples. Have you the curiosity to experience them live, be my guest and browse Rene's coded files.
Rene went through several changes during the design process. However, only one draft showed exactly what was in the designer's productive mind. These comps match the creative specifications of both client and the designer.