Melbourne Design Awards 2017

Melbourne is a city celebrated for its culture and creativity. Every day, Melburnians push the boundaries of what is possible with design and technology, crafting elegant, innovative, and compelling digital solutions.

The Melbourne Design Awards is an annual recognition of these fearless leaders—the men and women who transform what is possible online. We are honoured to be among this year’s award recipients, and proud to display all eleven (a new PB!) at our studio in Cremorne.

Those who know us know human-centred design rests at the heart of every decision we make and every product we deliver. We believe education and improvement go hand-in-hand; no “how” is complete without a “why.” So, rather than #humblebrag about our design process, talented team, or forward-thinking clients, we thought this a fitting opportunity to give a glimpse into some of the award-winning user experiences we’ve created this year.

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Gold: Digital – API
Gold: Digital – Retail & Shopping
Gold: Digital – Food & Drink

With three pieces of MDA hardware, Grill'd is this year’s golden child. Now with over 120 franchises, Australians flock to Grill’d for the food, the friendly service, and the company's commitment to building strong, healthy communities. Our task was to replicate this experience online.

Speed is essential for an optimal user experience, and that’s precisely what we delivered. Powered by a robust, scalable Grill’d API, customers can quickly and easily surface information about their “local,” review nutritional information, and build a custom burger from the comforts of their home. Where before the Grill’d website crashed following surges in traffic, today it can withstand swarms of starving customers.  

Hungry for more? Visit the Grill’d website or check out our Grill’d case study.

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Melbourne Convention Bureau

Gold: Digital – TravelTech

The Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) attracts delegates, supports conferences and other events, and promotes leisure activities that enhance visitors’ Melbourne experiences. Previously, MCB managed these efforts using a clunky ‘Melbourne Widget,’ and turned to us to reimagine the experience. 

Our solution? A clean, responsive microsite rich with arts, culture, attractions, and more. We specialise in the travel and tourism sectors, and understand an ideal “visitability” experience offers suggested itineraries alongside self-guided discovery opportunities . From coffee to concerts, MCB’s new microsite celebrates all that our great city has to offer.

Uncover hidden gems and time-tested favourites on MCB’s new visitability website.

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BTB Australia

Gold: Digital – Business Platforms

Convenience is a core point of differentiation for BTB Australia: the wholesale aggregator can help anyone become a telecommunications, internet, or data provider. However, the previous website did not succinctly communicate the business’s strengths, nor did it support a range of customer use cases.

Our research confirmed that while most prospective clients have a reasonable level of technical knowledge, BTB’s marketing communications needed to strike a balance between “techy” and approachable. We constructed in-depth user personas to guide these efforts, maintaining a focus on brevity, clarity, and personality. BTB’s website is now a powerful digital asset that highlights how customers benefit from BTB over competitor brands, and gently guides them through thoughtful user journeys.

Visit BTB’s website to learn more about this small telco with big dreams.

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Gold: Digital – Corporate

A one-of-a-kind company, Exigence specialise in bespoke IT solutions for the biotech and pharma industries. Following a modern, compelling rebrand, Exigence engaged us to design a digital presence to match.

Exigence is more than just a service provider. The company prides itself on friendly, helpful collaboration, and UX interviews with past and present clients confirmed this. We moved ahead with a website that showcased both Exigence’s services and its people. Subtle parallax, smooth html transitions, and a geometric motif came together to produce a sleek, straight-forward user experience.

Learn more about Exigence’s market-leading IT solutions on our case study

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Six Park

Silver: Digital – FinTech

Robo advisors use sophisticated algorithms to manage users’ investment portfolios. With proven uptake across all asset classes, robo advising has earned its place at the FinTech table. Still in its infancy, start-up Six Park eagerly engaged us to position the brand as balancing hands-off technology with real-life financial expertise. 

In-depth research led us to two primary, distinct user groups: general investors, and those keen to more efficiently invest their SMSF. Our challenge was to craft a linear progression through key pages without undermining existing sector knowledge or muddying the meaning of robo advice. Social proofing, clear copy, and the joint effort of our digital strategies and UX designers were instrumental in clearing these hurdles.

Wondering if a robo advisor is right for you? Click over to Six Park’s website or read our full case study.

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Silver: Digital – FinTech

We’ve been fortunate to work with the team at Lifebroker--an Australian expert in life insurance and income protection--for years. After the successful launch of the business’s innovative online comparison tool, Lifebroker came to us to improve customer UX, incorporate refreshed brand elements, and promote conversion optimisation.

The finished product is a smart website that balances lead generation, industry education, and product information. Our goal was to surface just the right amount of information to satisfy users’ needs and convey Lifebroker’s credibility and accessibility. We achieved this by working closely with key stakeholders to develop data-driven audience personas.

Visit the Lifebroker website and compare dozens of insurance products.

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Little Real Estate

Silver: Digital – Home & Living

Despite its standing as Australia’s largest independently-owned real estate company, Little Real Estate’s existing website failed to offer the kind of value customers know and expect of the brand. The team engaged us to design a consistent and captivating experience across all of its digital channels.

To do so, we facilitated UX workshops with the team and backed that up with extensive customer research. These conversations pointed to a self-directed market and drove home the importance of an intuitive, user-friendly search experience. With the help of our trusted partner Algolia, we put search at the heart of the new website and made it easy for buyers, sellers, and renters to gain instant access to information of interest. 

Want to see Algolia in action? Visit Little Real Estate’s website, or read about the company’s digital transformation on our case study.

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List G Barristers

Silver: Digital – Business Operations

Barrister lists like List G occupy a special niche in the legal world, one that makes conventional marketing efforts practically irrelevant. Because lists like these are so few in number, solicitors are already aware of who they might enlist for a particular case. This places distinctive branding and information accessibility well ahead of flashy marketing campaigns.

Our first step of the digital rebrand was to conduct extensive interviews of solicitors and barristers to understand more deeply what information they expected when using a site like List G. Following a fun and productive UX workshop with the team, we brought our resulting user journey to life with the help of Algolia and an open-source, reliable technology platform.

Head to List G's website to give their powerful search experience a try.

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Axton Finance

Silver: Digital – Business Operations

Like Grill’d, the team at Axton Finance—a boutique mortgage broker based in Hawthorn East—wanted to digitise their personable professionalism. The previous website fell short of this goal; it lacked intuitive pathways that would lead prospective customers to Axton’s digital doorstep.

Today, Axton’s website is a full-bodied lead gen tool whose information architecture is reflective of the way customers search for mortgage information online. After immersing ourselves in reams of business and customer data, we crafted an experience that clearly communicates the advantages of an independent broker over a bank. Recognising people do not take financial decision-making lightly, we used social proofing to foster trust and constructed user journeys that encourage prospective clients to connect with an Axton representative.  

Head to Axton’s website to meet the friendly faces behind the brand.

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We capped off a fun, fabulous evening with a surprise twelfth award: Best Design Studio! To be recognised as an industry leader in a city bursting with creativity is an honour, and one we don't take lightly. Our ability to design and develop award-winning digital experiences is as much the result of our hardworking team as it is our clients who trust us with their businesses and brands. From all of us to all of you: thank you!

Are your users receiving the experience they deserve? Get in touch