Visage starts a journey

‘Visage is an independent ladies boutique situated in the vibrant town of Oxted in Surrey.’ This is how Visage describes itself.

The shop had a website developed through Yell and very little else. The aspiration is to develop the client base using social media, develop a richer website and sell online using two methods. To achieve this a series of phases has been planned. This is a report of Phase 1.

Website

There was a crying need to replace the existing site that was not easy to manage, unresponsive and, frankly, unflattering to the high-end quality of the shop.

A branding exercise was undertaken and a designer is working on logos, colour palette, style guide, web and printed materials. Unfortunate this was not ready in time for the planned ‘switch off’ of the existing site, so some drastic action was required.

The only assets available were those on the existing five page site, so it was decided to develop a single page solution using these. The obvious solution was to produce a ‘quick’ Twitter Bootstrap site. That was done and published a week before the planned switch over. It was good, but some large images had been included and the result was slow loading and unsatisfactory.

So, back to our favourite Drupal. Given the structure from the Bootstrap site and our own minimalist Drupal theme we produced a Bootstrap-flavoured site with a fraction of the code. The solution is:

  • Single page site with everything on one long scrollable page.
  • A menu that is simple links to areas of the page.
  • A banner with a parallax effect.
  • Map and Contact Form.
  • Full social media integration using AddToAny.
  • Compliance with the EU Cookie Directive.
  • A slight cheat with three hidden pages to cover the full legal requirements for Terms and Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

The site is quick in that the images are cached properly and load correctly. When the branding is finished it should be an easy job to ‘skin’ the site, replacing logos, colours, images, etc. This is still only a temporary site that enables the project to move forward.

Social Media

This is still very much in its infancy, but at least it is under way. There are three main routes at present:

  1. Regular mail-shots using MailChimp. There is an existing list of contacts that must be confirmed legally. After that email addresses will be acquired via contact in the shop, website sign ups, etc.
  2. Facebook – a Facebook Page has been set-up at www.facebook.com/visagesurrey. Very much work in progress, but it has started.
  3. Linkedin – a Linkedin Company Page has been opened at www.linkedin.com/company/visage-surrey. Again it is very embryonic.

These will have Twitter and Instagram added soon when the branding is complete.

The future

As stated above the intention is to develop a final website to cover all aspects of the business. An online store is important and we are actively investigating the merits and suitability of eBay, Drupal Commerce and Shopify integration. It’s an exciting challenge which we are looking forward to meeting.

Back to all news