Grill’d to Perfection

Grill’d is known around Australia for serving up deliciously healthy burgers and taking care of Australian communities. Since 2004, the burger brand has supported prominent non-profits like Movember and local charities through the well-known “Local Matters” program.

Over the past six years, Grill’d has enjoyed tremendous growth and has expanded from 35 to over 120 restaurants, making it a clear contender for Australia's burger of choice.

Grilld Case Study 01

Growing pains.

Like many businesses who experience slingshot growth, however, the Grill’d website and associated systems hadn’t kept pace with the rate of expansion. Website information was often out of date, and the infrastructure could not support high traffic during campaign activity, often crashing under heavy loads.

Eager to generate the same buzz around their digital presence as their physical product and in-restaurant customer service, Grill’d engaged us to develop a next-generation website alongside an agile platform to streamline business process, drive customer engagement, and support a variety of digital marketing efforts. These pieces also needed to support ecommerce and a mobile app, as both were slated for development on the tail of the new website’s launch.

Want to know how we served up a spicy solution? Keep reading.

Grilld Case Study 02

Be good. Do good. Feel good.

The Grill’d philosophy is all about what’s good: ethical sourcing, community engagement, and healthy, whole foods. We knew the website had to be good, too—a one-stop-shop for customers to easily access brand and product information.

To create an experience that resonated with customers’ needs, we hit the streets to do some hard-hitting UX research and chat to Grill’d customers. Armed with an iPad and a fistful of burger vouchers, a team of Evolutionaries set off for our local (and much adored) Grill’d on Richmond’s Swan St. There, we learned some invaluable insights about what customers expect from a retail site and how they respond to different features and components.

Grilld Case Study 03

Uncovering kernels of truth.

Grill’d customers are primarily focused on two things: browsing the menu, and finding their local Grill’d restaurant. These objectives became critical user journeys and part of the website’s A-level navigation, warranting special treatment across all devices. With a single click/tap, users can jump from any page to the menu (complete with pricing, ingredients, and nutritional information) or to a user-friendly restaurant locator.

We also learned a lot about the relationship between a customer and his or her “local”. Recognizing that customers want to feel comfortable and welcomed on arrival, our goal was to replicate the brand’s five-star in-restaurant experience online by surfacing relevant content quickly and easily.

Next we constructed the information architecture and wireframes based on our research, and iterated over several versions, collaborating closely with Grill’d stakeholders before venturing back out for more street testing. This collaboration helped us bring the irreverent and illustrative Grill’d style to life online.

Grilld Case Study 04

A burger for everyone.

Because menus differ from restaurant to restaurant, building out a generic menu was not an option. While the journey to this information is a bit more complex than other franchise operations, we managed to create a sleek solution within these restraints.

Given the rise of vegetarianism and vegans in Australia (see articles here, here and here), we also elected to feature “food tribe” and nutritional content prominently on the site. In addition to a homepage feature, we created a dedicated overview page and special controls on the menu page to understand how Grill’d fare can be made to suit all kinds of dietary restrictions and preferences (gluten-free, dairy-free, low-carb, and so on).

Grilld Case Study Mobile

Tonnes of tasty tech.

Our team of backend developers purpose built a data model to handle products, regions, restaurants, and “Local Matters” content via Craft, our CMS of choice here at Evolution 7. Products were unexpectedly complex due to the interaction of different region price tiers, names, variants, and nutritional information, but Craft handled everything beautifully.

Modeling complex data in Craft also paved the way for us to implement the “Grill’d API”, giving the business a streamlined and scalable way to share data with other sites and applications. By incorporating several data sources into a unified API endpoint, product, restaurant, and other content is easily delivered to other properties in the ecosystem (an ecommerce site or a mobile app, for example).

Here’s a taste of what you’ll find on the new Grill’d site:

The menu

Because the Grill’d menu is such a key ingredient to the website’s success, we knew its design and functionality had to be flawless. After several iterations, we landed on an approach that felt a bit more “analog” in tone, displaying across two-columns like a traditional, printed menu. This design was well-received by stakeholders and customers alike.

Find a restaurant

After plenty of testing, we opted for a full-screen, map-based approach to help customers find their “local.” Using a conventional “mapping” type UI, customers can pan and zoom, or select from a list of restaurants to the left of the map.

Food tribes

Vegetarian? Vegan? Gluten-free? Everyone is welcome! The website now houses a dedicated section for food tribes, complete with menu recommendations and healthy eating options.

Restaurant pages

These pages deliver quick access to your local Grill’d opening hours, news, and happenings. We blended shot footage with cheeky illustrations, and pulled Local Matters content from an external datasource synchronized with the website.


We architected a robust, load-balanced solution on Amazon AWS that could handle heavy traffic, and tackled caching/CDN/WAF duties with Cloudflare. The site now delivers a lightning fast experience, and we’re thrilled to share the site has maintained 99.99% uptime since launch.

Campaign capacity

To isolate campaign traffic from typical website traffic, we developed a swift, scalable solution using serverless tech including AWS Lambda and Dynamo DB. With this solution, the new Grill’d website can sustain massive campaign traffic without affecting page load. To learn more about this innovative technique, check out our “Avo Go” campaign case study (coming soon).  

Advanced analytics

In light of the website’s many, layered complexities, we put together an analytics and measurement plan far beyond what is normally available on Google Analytics. Thanks to a custom tracking setup deployed through Tealium, our team has at-a-glance access to which sources drive highly-engaged customers, how customers interact with the site and its functionalities, product preferences, and countless other insights about audience segments.

Hero New Menu Burger 1920

Full-flavoured results.

From the beginning, the core objective of this collaboration was to deliver a website and digital platform to elevate Grill’d while still delivering the friendly, irreverent experience customers have come to expect from the brand. 

Because market research pointed to the menu as the hero of the website, we designed a streamlined digital solution. Site analytics in the first three months following launch provided clear indication that users responded positively and favourably to our chosen approach: 

website traffic
mobile bounce rate

Together, these stats—supported by a number of sizable promotions—indicate the new website’s content and structure delivers delicious value, making the Grill’d brand more accessible and alluring to both new and longtime customers.

Moving forward, we are excited to broaden our partnership with the forward-thinking team at Grill’d to include consolidating customer data into a single platform, implementing online ordering, and building out the Grill’d API.

“Launching our biggest ever promotion just three weeks after launching a new website proved to be an excellent test of our new hosting infrastructure, which was designed and delivered by Evolution 7. We achieved record traffic and we handled it with aplomb.” - Nik Burton, Head of Digital
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