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    Giftorial is a South African online gift registry, who hope to take the world by storm, 1 pixel at a time. Approached by the development agency, … Read More
    Giftorial is a South African online gift registry, who hope to take the world by storm, 1 pixel at a time. Approached by the development agency, HiveMinder in the UK, the task at hand required a site design from the ground up. After meeting with the owner, a complete brand analysis was undertaken, to discover what it stood for, what were it’s traits, quirks and overall brand personality. All so that this could be distilled into its site. The primary target market are tech savvy women (I mean who else would take the time to set up an online gift registry) aged 21 – 45. They’re smart, sophisticated and sassy ladies, so the brand, through it’s digital presence, had to engage to them in order to set up registries. After a few episodes of Oprah, I got in touch with my inner feminine - here are the results. Read Less
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GIFTORIAL TAKES THE GUESSING OUT OF GIFTING
Giftorial is a South African online gift registry, who hope to take the gifting world by storm. Approached by the development agency, HiveMinder UK, the client required a site design concept. After an initial meeting with Giftorial's owner, a complete brand analysis was undertaken. This was to discover what the brand stood for, as well as what it’s traits, quirks and overall brand personality were. All so that this could be distilled into its site. The primary target market were tech savvy women (I mean who else would take the time to set up an online gift registry) aged 21 - 45. They’re smart, sophisticated and sassy ladies, so the brand, through it’s digital presence, had to engage them in order to set up registries. After a few episodes of Oprah, I got in touch with my feminine side and here are the results of the page concepts that I came up with. 
WEB DESIGN WORK FLOW


CREATIVE PROCESS:
1. DREAM
All great ideas start in the subconscious.
This is where my concepts are conceived.
Born from insight and imagination.
2. DESIGN 
Great impressions are hard to come by.
Which is why I ensure that every project
becomes a magnetic invitation to clients.
3. DELIVER
I believe that credibility is the greatest currency.
Results build reputations. And I’ve built mine by 
delivering on time - every time.


DESIGN PHASE:


FINAL SITE ELEMENTS


SITE CONCEPT:
The site functionality clearly delineated 2 distinct sets of users. Those who created registries and those who contributed to them. Oprah said that women hated complications, as such I wanted to create a user experience that was incredibly simple and intuitive. 
 
So I focused on the following:
 
•   A UX that anticipated the tasks users needed to complete – We broke down the steps for users on both sides, to the bare minimum, so tasks were completed quickly and easily.

 •   A UI that followed on from this themeI wanted to create an interface that was uncluttered and minimalist (Heeding  Oprah’s  advice  about  complications).

 •   Big, bold, beautiful visuals – The use of these would convey the warmth and humanity of the brand.

 •   A large dose of quirk in the visualsAs reflected by the brand personality, you’ll see visuals that are modern in their palette and selection.

 •   A brief intro about the ownerThe brand was given a human touch, so that users felt that they were dealing with a Company that was run by a person and not just a machine.
FLOWCHART FORMULATION & UI / UX MAPPING:
In order to map out the user journey and make the entire user experience more clear-cut, a flowchart for the site was formulated. The UX / UI mapping process allows me to get an aerial view of the entire site. Once the entire user experience is seen, along with specific user paths, this helps me quantify the number of pages that need to be created. I can also see the structure that each page should have, in order for users to perform the tasks they need to. 
WIREFRAMES:
Once the UX / UI mapping is done, and the concept and design principles are put in place, I start sketching out wireframes for the site. This typically involves:

Choosing a Grid SystemI’m not a huge fan of the popular 960 system. I feel that it’s far too small for desktops and you can’t fit as much content into it. Though it is responsive, one would still have to go back and optimise for mobile anyway! I prefer a 1000 pixel grid system. As that leaves enough room on either side for even the smallest laptops like Apple’s new Macbook etc. and can accommodate more content.

• Information ArchitectureAfter setting up my grid I move on to laying out the information architecture of the page. As you’ll see each lay out  is completely different as the functionality for each page and user varies. A more detailed explanation for each page is provided later on.
Home Page
How Giftorial Works
About Giftorial
Contact Us 
COLOUR PALETTE:
To match the beautiful visuals that formed the core of the concept, along with bearing in mind the target audience, I went for softer shades of the material design palette. You’ll see that much of the content, is set against visuals, so I created some text protection for the content, by making the images darker, so that the white text could be more visible and readable on these. You’ll also see big, bold and beautifully striking colours for the buttons and calls to action. This is evident right from the outset on the Home page. I carried this theme through to all the pages and applied it equally to the buttons, so these were clear as calls to action.
VISUALS:
In choosing visuals, I ensured that they were appropriate, fit with the creative concept and accentuated the message that the content was attempting to convey. You’ll also see a lot of visuals with people in them, this is to again humanise the brand and add a personal touch. There’s a great example of this on the About page, where the owner offers visuals of herself in order to connect with her audience.

Photo Editing:
You’ll see a lot of colour correction and the addition of various filters to the images purchased. This is done to make the images feel more alive and modern, so that it appeals to the target market and adds more liveliness to the site and pages. The applications of these effects are demonstrated below.
TYPOGRAPHY:
The experience of giving and receiving gifts is an incredibly fun and rewarding one. As such, I wanted the typefaces to reflect this. I went with “fun” handwritten fonts for the headings, which accentuated the entertainment factor. I paired this with more readable fonts for the body copy. And I think they offset each other well, and create a good balance between being pretty and practical.
FINAL DESIGNS


HOME PAGE:
I love big hero images. And because I wanted to create a very intuitive UI and UX, you’ll see a full screen home page with a beautiful image, that perfectly conveys the essence of the site – the act of both giving and receiving gifts. And how about some round circular buttons, to make the site feel more fun and inviting, as opposed to the normal boring rectangular ones! The buttons also simplify the UI by offering both sets of users clear and simply worded options.
CONTENT PAGES:
Because both the brand and site are starting out, the main problem encountered was a lack of content. In order to deal with this, I opted to create modals for sections like the About and Contact pages. This solved the problem of thin content, as all that’s needed for a modal, is about a paragraph of text. This also has the added advantage of making the site faster and feels more snappy for users. I thought this was a clever and effective way to deal with the issue.

HOW GIFTORIAL WORKS
ABOUT GIFTORIAL - THE GIRL BEHIND GIFTORIAL
CONTACT PAGE
ADD ITEMS TO REGISTRY
SEARCH REGISTRIES

CONCLUSION:
It was a great privilege to be involved with something that will help so many people give and receive love in the form of gift giving and getting. Cue Oprah credits! This project gave me the opportunity to learn much about my feminine self, and I realised that I’m a big softy! It also gave me the opportunity to extend my ability as a designer. Here’s to more “presents” and clients like Giftorial!
Thank you for taking the time to view this project.
 Hitesh Jinabhai