An eCommerce website design for Furious Fur that defines modern vintage with ethical faux fur to create a new revenue stream
3 UX & 1 UI
UX Designer & Project Lead
User Research, Competitive Analysis, Persona, Site Map
Low to Mid-fidelity Wireframes, Prototyping & User Testing
Furious Fur is a Toronto-based company that designs and produces high-quality faux fur products that feel just like real fur. Their products are sold in retail stores worldwide and can even be found in The Bay. In order to expand their market, they want to take their business digital and start selling their products on the e-commerce platform, Shopify.
The current website of Furious Fur was not set up to sell any products to customers, which means they are missing out on a lot of opportunities to get their products shipped directly to people’s homes. A lot of people have never heard about the company according to our research. They sell their products to wholesalers who take a cut of the sales. The client realized that most of their stiff competition have an eCommerce website and that they were falling behind.
Quick Peek to the Solution
Our approach was to create a new revenue stream through eCommerce sales. In addition, the new website would also be an ideal opportunity to build a larger and new customer base through social media engagement and brand recognition. Finally, the resulting end product would need to work with Shopify as the long-term plans of the company were to host the website there.
Start generating eCommerce sales;
Increase social media engagement & brand recognition;
Build the context with iterations
Finding Customers' Shopping Preferences
Our UX team built online surveys and conducted phone interviews to understand the users and their shopping behaviour. We collected 30 online responses and 3 sales representatives phone interviews that led to some key insights:
Understanding the Market
There are many faux fur fashion brands in the market. We wanted to see who our competitors are and what they were doing right and wrong. Once we see our competition we can decide what we like and dislike about other companies that sell similar items as our client. We also studied some indirect competitors to get a better understanding of eCommerce.
Meeting the Furious Fur Users
Our research findings also led to the following personas that are created based on the data we gathered through our survey.
The first persona was Nat, a 28-year-old medical lab scientist with a healthy salary. Look, price and quality are the most important factors for her when she’s shopping for clothing, but when she’s shopping for faux fur though look, price and feel are most important. Nat likes to shop and browse for clothing online but can go either way (online/ in-person) when it comes to buying clothing. She enjoys experimenting with her clothing (she’ll spend $100 — $300 per month on clothing) since she’s still curating the perfect style for herself. Her wardrobe consists of staple/ investment pieces (purses, coats, and shoes) as well as fast fashion pieces (shirts, dresses, and jeans).
The next persona was Tabitha, a young professional just entering the workforce. She has an appreciation for the more casual and classic style. She typically spends $51- $100 per month on clothing. Tabitha likes clothing that is fashionable and supports brands that use materials that have a social and environmental impact. She owns a faux fur coat and likes that a lot of the companies that sell faux fur products are PETA certified. She'd like to know the company before purchasing from them to make sure they’re in-line with her values.
From these personas and our research we determined some of the most important features our website would have to meet the needs and wants to Nat and Tabitha:
Instagram Integration: We’d make it easy to see how other people in the real world wore Furious Furs so that customers like our persona Nat would be able to see what’s trending.
PETA Association: The website would have a very prominent display that showed Furious Fur’s proud association with PETA so that customers like Tabitha would see that Furious Fur was in alignment with the same values that she holds dear.
Reviews: The website would help people learn about the quality of a Furious Fur product by hosting a reviews section on each product’s page. By letting customers see what other customers had said about the product this would help customers learn to associate the Furious Fur name with a quality product. This, in turn, would help Furious Fur become more of a recognized brand and address an issue we’d found in our survey (that none of our survey respondents had ever heard about or purchased a product from Furious Fur before)
Building Brand Recognition: Since none of our survey respondents had heard of or purchased a product from Furious Fur before we knew that we’d need to teach website visitors about the Furious Fur brand. We’d need to orientate them to the Furious Fur brand before we started selling them the products.
Simple Navigation: With many of our survey respondents noting that easy navigation was important to them we’d design a site that had a very simple structure and did not go too many levels deep.
Filters: Furious Fur had an extensive list of products (80+ per season) with numerous sizes ranging from XS to XL. To make it easy for our customers to find the faux fur products they wanted we’d add the ability to search all the products at once and filter based on criteria like product category, price, size and even by sale items. This would address Nat’s need for easy website navigation and assist Tabitha in her search for affordable items for her workplace.
Bookmarks: We’d also make it easy for people to bookmark items they liked and find them later on so they didn’t need to go digging through the entire website again to find an item they liked.
Mapping Out the Structure
Before we jumped into the design, we created a site map of a hierarchical diagram that showed the structure of our website. Through the site map, we were able to visualize the navigation system, identify where content will sit and understand the relationship between different pages.
We each hand-sketched the possibilities of how the website can look and the features discussed above to include on each page. After brainstorming, we picked the best features for our client’s website and combined them into our mid-fidelity.
We each hand-sketched the possibilities of how the website can look and the features discussed above to include on each page. After brainstorming, we picked the best features for our client’s website and combined them into our mid-fidelity. Below is our homepage:
While wrapping up our mid-fidelity design, our UI designers came up with several mood boards and style tiles to convey the luxurious, modern, and empowering tone that Furisour Fur wanted to accomplish. The prime colours are wine-red and gold which is based on femininity, classiness and luxury. Based on the mood board, the UI team created a style guide below which showcases logo variations, colours, typography, and icons/buttons based on visual preference discussions with our client.
Validating Our Design
We tested the prototype with 8 users that represented our personas to perform some key functions of the website such as finding a specific piece of clothing, placing an order, checking the wishing list, and learning about the brand value. Users were able to complete the tasks so no overall changes were required. The only changes we made were:
Change 1: About Page
The "About" page was moved from the footer to the header to make it more prominent. Users wanted to learn about the company and the brand before they considered buying. They wanted to know "About" sooner rather than scrolling all the way down to the bottom.
Change 2: PETA
We removed the PETA logo from the footer. When asked where they would go to find information about the company’s association with PETA, never did users noticed the PETA logo on the bottom footer. As a result, we incorporated the information about PETA into the About section so they would not miss it.
Change 3: Filter
An additional feature added to the filter page which allowed the user to easily reset all their filters with one click. This was a feature that was commonly requested on the filter page. So, we easily accommodated this with a “Clear All” button next to all the filters.
After incorporating the user testing feedback, the mid-fidelity wireframes were polished into high-fidelity wireframes. Please click on
Furious Fur Web Link to view the complete prototype.
While it would take lots of work for our design to be integrated into the Shopify platform, the client decided to use some of our design as guidance and applied the website structure and functionality in her platform.
Given it was a 3-week sprint, we focused on designing only the core functionality of the website. Some future considerations we offered to our client included:
Foreign Language and Currency: Furious Furs’s products are sold globally. We think the website will be more user-friendly later if foreign language and currency options can be incorporated;
Live Chatbot: Users will be able to get instant responses and feedbacks through live chatbot, which can facilitate their purchasing process and improve their overall shopping experience.