Tile Africa recently launched its new-look website that includes a web and mobi site with an interactive gallery, a mood board tool, customer care interface and social media integration.
“The aim of the website revamp is to improve our interaction with our customers. We want to provide our online users with the same level of inspiration they experience when they visit one of our stores,” says Debra Retief, Marketing Manager at Tile Africa.
One of the functionalities added to the website is a mood board. “It allows customers to generate their own mood boards to get an idea of what products look great together as well as what their project will cost,” says Retief.
Developed and designed by integrated digital agency NXT, the website makeover came about after Tile Africa won a digital makeover prize to the value of R200 000 in the first Extreme Digital Makeover competition hosted by NXT in 2013.
“Not only were we surprised to hear that we had won the prize, but NXT came through and fulfilled the promise, what a pleasure,” Andrea Jacobs, Creative Designer at Tile Africa. “We were in the process of giving our current site a complete makeover, so the prize couldn’t have come at a more convenient time. The new site gives our customers an idea of what is possible and provides them with a recipe that works for them,” she says.
NXT launched the competition for the first time last year with the purpose of showcasing its integrated capabilities in the digital space. The premise of the competition was simple, all medium to large brands and businesses were invited to enter to win an extreme digital makeover. Brands were required to motivate why their organisations deserved the expertise of NXT in helping to develop their brands in the competitive digital arena.
The competition was promoted via SMSes, QR codes and flyers at the Internet and Markex shows at the Sandton Convention Centre.
“The competition was a huge success with almost 70 brands from a variety of industries taking the time to enter and motivate why they should win the prize,” says Ben Krawchuk, Chief Operating Officer of NXT.
Tile Africa’s digital makeover included a session with one of NXT’s founders and Chief Innovations Officer, David Oosthuizen who was joined by a creative and strategic team. The brand was scrutinised, analysed and deconstructed to ascertain how potential opportunities could be leveraged digitally for the benefit of the brand going forward. The findings of this session were then developed into a strategy, which included web development, social media integration and other elements suited to the specific needs of Tile Africa.
Communicating product information to online customers is the biggest need for a retail brand’s website as people want to know what they’re looking at along with any information relating to that product. “In this age of information we need to ensure that customers are able to access all the relevant information at the touch of a button,” says Retief.
The digital makeover of the website wasn’t without challenges. “It required Tile Africa to make modifications to its systems, to upgrade to new technology and integrate various systems, but their team made the necessary modifications and ensured a quick turn around,” says Krawchuk.
Karin Higley, Online Media Assistant at Tile Africa stepped in as project manager on the implementation and rollout of the new website. “Her experience has allowed her to pre-empt common problems and her knowledge of the product categories has resulted in a seamless, multi-faceted and solution-driven site,” says Retief.
The idea for the mood board came from Tile Africa’s marketing team and NXT improved on the idea and made it a reality. “It’s fully integrated with Pinterest and adds value to our customers’ experience of our site as they can pin individual images or boards they create,” she says.
The new website was developed on a .NET platform with full reporting functionality and is hosted in the cloud.
“The result is amazing, the site looks good, is easy to navigate and we have provided customers looking for inspiration with modern, classic and different ideas to consider for various spaces within their homes. We’ve also covered the needs of our commercial clients, providing contact information and showcasing prestigious projects we’ve serviced,” says Retief.
To view Tile Africa’s new website visit www.tileafrica.co.za.