A TASTE OF HOME

Connecting expat communities across North America with the taste of their home through e-commerce.

E-Commerce | Mega Retail

Message from the lead, Aidan Morgan

I believe e-commerce is the future in every industry, so when the owner of a small corner store located in Victoria, BC expressed his aspirations to bring his store online, I couldn't have been more excited.

What made it even more exciting was that the food sold at this store wasn't your average Gatorades & Lays chips, it was traditional South African groceries.

Now selling food online can be tough, it's heavy, easily damageable, it's perishable, and the vast majority of people live within 15 minutes of an actual grocery store. So I knew we had many challenges ahead, I mean even Amazon has been slow to absorbing the grocery e-commerce market.

But looking back at where we started, and where we've taken it, Aubergine Foods is a true testament to the power of e-commerce and beautifully user-focused, web design.

Keep scrolling and I'm sure you'll be pleasantly impressed.

Our Role: Web Design, User Interface, User Experience, Development, Marketing, Management

What it's
About

An exercise in culture & UX.

When I first started with Aubergine Foods, it quickly became clear that a culturally relevant user experience would be required. The goal was to make the patrons feel like they were shopping in one of the big grocery stores back in South Africa, like they did while they were growing up. 

I wanted to spark a feeling of nostalgia, South African traditionalism & the professionalism patrons feel when shopping at big brands like Amazon, Wal-Mart or Woolworths. 

I believe the unique combination of the colors, imagery, and copy developed a UI & UX did exactly that.

There are over 1M South Africans Living in the USA alone,

and that's growing every year.

The Design

Color Scheme Choice

The colors of the South African flag were the inspiration for color choices for this site.

For the American & global version of the website I chose the golden rod yellow to be the primary color, for buttons, saturated backgrounds & other important elements. I landed on this yellow because it  proved to provide great contrast for text & succeeds at grabbing the users attention.

For the supporting colors, I chose a 'Green House' green as the color for secondary buttons, useful text only links as well as some badges for certain products.

Finally, I reserved a 'Totem Pole' red for any promotional messages that need t o stand out amongst everything else.

For the Canadian-specific version of the website, I followed the same protocol except switched the roles of the Golden Rod Yellow & Dark Red. This, along with the slight difference in logo, made it clear to visitors that this was for Canadian-South African expats.

Golden Rod

Primary
Hex #feb134 rgb(254,177,52)

Green House

Supporting
Hex #205b14
rgb(32,91,20)

Color Scheme Choice

The colors of the South African flag were the inspiration for color choices for this site.

For the American & global version of the website I chose the golden rod yellow to be the primary color, for buttons, saturated backgrounds & other important elements. I landed on this yellow because it  proved to provide great contrast for text & succeeds at grabbing the users attention.

For the supporting colors, I chose a 'Green House' green as the color for secondary buttons, useful text only links as well as some badges for certain products.

Finally, I reserved a 'Totem Pole' red for any promotional messages that need t o stand out amongst everything else.

For the Canadian-specific version of the website, I followed the same protocol except switched the roles of the Golden Rod Yellow & Dark Red. This, along with the slight difference in logo, made it clear to visitors that this was for Canadian-South African expats.

The Imagery

For the imagery, I decided to majorly focus on the actual products that are listed. There's nothing that gets the visitors of Aubergine Foods more excited than seeing hundreds of products that are not available anywhere else in North America.

And of course,

It's Responsibly Responsive

(Stunning & functional on all devices)

The User Interface

Intuitive Organization

When you're selling over 1500 unique products, nothing is more important than a clear and intuitive way to navigate through the sea of possibilities.

Beyond the basics of sorting new to old, or low price to high price, Aubergine Foods features combination filtering options that allow customers to sort by brand, origin, type and dietary preference all at once.

Want vegan food from Zimbabwe? Easy. Want a specific brand of cookies? Not a problem.

Collection Shopping

Maximizing sales on an eCommerce website means minimizing friction in every area possible, and with large catalogs like this, that means allowing customers to add items to their cart as often as possible.

These aren’t complicated products, so in most cases, people tend to scroll through collection pages and simply add the products to their cart from there solely based on the images.

If they want to know more about a specific product, like the ingredients or full description, they can also visit the product pages and add the products from there as well. 

Cross Device Memory

Not all customers can finish their shopping in one session, and when most customers are buying dozens of products at once nothing is more frustrating than having to go through and pick all their items out again.

This is where the cross-device memory comes in. Any customer who is signed in will have the ability to switch between any device during their shopping, keeping all the contents in their cart saved.

Bespoken Mobile Layout

The mobile layout and functions include all the features available on a desktop computer. Over two thirds of the customers are now shopping from their phones.

The User Experience

Empathetic Features

For every customer, it could be any of the 1000_ products that bring them to site, but if that product is sold out, they tend to hold off on making a purchase altogether.
Furthermore, some products can sell out within a matter of hours once they are restocked, and we had to implement something more effective than preorders as that would tie up currently available stock.

To do this, we implemented push notification abilities for each product. When an item is out of stock, a customer can simply click "Tell me when it's back," and be notified the moment stock levels change.

24/7 Support

There customers here always have questions to be answered, the 24/7 support section provides the solutions they're looking for during any time of the day.

At the times when a customer support agent isn't online, the bespoke chat-bot can do virtually everything the agent can including, answering questions about tracking, shipping rates & times, or submitting support tickets for damaged packages.

Post Purchase

With the use of segmented Klaviyo email flows, customers can expect both a unique and consistent experience after placing their order.

For example, "thank you" emails will always have content that differs based on characteristics like the number of orders someone has placed or the items they've purchased in that order.

Gamified Shopping

In order to boost the engagement on-site as well as increase sales, we implemented some gamification to the shopping experience.


Free gifts with spending milestones , branded rewards that carry over to the next purchase, special levels

The Back
End

Custom International Pricing

Because the cost of business can greatly differ from country to country, unique pricing

Multi-Store Inventory Tracking

Due to the the nature of the pricing structure for these products, we found it most efficient to create a totally separate version of the store for Canadians only, but this store still used the same source for inventory.

But because we went this route, we had to ensure that stock levels were synchronized across both stores in order to avoid double the work when importing inventory and prevent overselling of stock.

Customer Aquisition

Email & SMS Marketing

We believe there is nothing more powerful in marketing than when customers opt-in to receive your promotions, that's why email & SMS marketing has been a top priority here.

Through the use of major newsletters, smart-sending campaigns & intelligently crafted promotions catered to specific segments we have more than doubled industry averages in open rates & conversions.

SEM & SEO

There are a few competitors in the space, so ensuring we were fully optimized for search engines was a must. Through the use of alt texts, page structure, niche content & unique meta descriptions for all 1000+ products we are now ranking to the top of the list for the vast majority of keyword searches.

We have also implemented advanced paid search tactics that greatly supplement our organic SEO efforts. Our management of these ads has contributed to over a 1500% ROAS.

Social Media

Customers don't want to be just sold to when they're browsing social media, they want content that brings some sort of value to their lives. To do this, we focused on consistently creating culturally relevant content that often touches on nostalgia, life as an expat, food & of course, humour.

Because of our efforts, our Social Media accounts generate at least 13x the engagement compared to relevant competitors.

It's more than just shopping

We understood how important community was to the patrons here, which is why we started a tribe that's totally separate from any other social network. The tribe is built to let members discuss important topics to them like food, immigration, news, humour and so much more. All free from the saturation, spam and irrelevant content promotion you find on traditional Facebook groups.

While this tribe is owned and operated by us, we have branded it as something impartial to the selling of our products here but have also incorporated rewards for content creations & engagement that can be carried over to discounts for our store.

#TheTasteofHome

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Resulting Highlights

200x Revenue & Counting

Since our partnership, Aubergine has increased it's average monthly revenue more than 200x while also increasing average gross margins more than 20%. We couldn't be more excited about what the future holds.

Problems/Objections & Solutions Summary

Making it easier for customers to track their purchases.


The Solution:
This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution. This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution

Letting customers know a particular item is back in stock.


The Solution:
This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution. This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution

Making shipping & delivery rates affordable.


The Solution:
This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution. This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution

Letting customers easily find the product they're looking for.


The Solution:
This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution. This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution

Enabling purchases to start & finish on different devices.


The Solution:
This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution. This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution

Providing 24/7 support without 24/7 employment.


The Solution:
This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution. This is the solution. The solution is great, the solution is awesome, the solution is bespoke. This is why the solution was created like this because it can be and there really is no other way that measures up to this solution

Ready to create something special like this?

Make Contact

or keep looking at more work;

CASE STUDY

Canadian born commodity trading advisor providing scientific solutions to capital markets

Dynamic Blog Website | Fintech

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Our Role: Design, Development

What it's
About

Heading

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Key 
Features

Heading

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Key 
Features

Heading

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CASE STUDY

Providing world-class virtual and in-person tutoring services

E-Commerce Retail | Web & Mobile

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Our Role: Complete Construction Management Marketing

The Front End

Easy Student Management

When you're selling over 1500 unique products, nothing is more important than a clear and intuitive way to navigate through the sea of possibilities.

Beyond the basics of sorting new to old, or low price to high price, Aubergine Foods features combination filtering options that allow customers to sort by brand, origin, type and dietary preference all at once.

Want vegan food from Zimbabwe? Easy. Want a specific brand of cookies? Not a problem.

Convenient Shopping

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Built to Scale

Not all customers can finish their shopping in one session, and when most customers are buying dozens of products at once nothing is more frustrating then having to go through and pick all their items out again.

This is where the cross-device memory comes in. Any customer who is signed in will get to switch between any device during their shop keeping all the contents in their cart saved.

User Focused from Start to Finish

Intuitive Booking Management

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Simple Session Onboarding

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Easy Access to Resources

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The Back
End

Easy Student Management

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Content Production

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Built to Scale

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The Impact

Custom International Pricing & Tracking

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Advanced Email Flows

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User Focused Integrations

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More Than Just Shopping

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Resulting Highlights

Heading

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