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Reimagining a B2B lead generation tool for the construction industry

B2B SaaS • Scaleup
Service Design • Product Design
11 months

Glenigan is a subscription product for the construction industry, providing the latest information about construction projects in planning or underway - subscribers use it to generate business and keep an eye on trends.

Glenigan approached Makemedia to reimagine the product from the ground up, replacing a slow and dated experience which had lost ground to the competition.

Uncovering new value propositions

Glenigan was under threat from fast-moving competitors in the marketplace. Offering similiar services at lower cost, they were aggressively undercutting Glenigan and posing a threat to customer retention - the key success metric for Software as a Service (SAAS) businesses.

"The product had to deliver value in new areas to stay ahead of the competition."

Customer’s expectations of business-to-business (B2B) software had risen, and Glenigan was not offering the contemporary experience users expected. We knew that delivering a fully responsive, fast experience was crucial. But the product had to deliver value in other areas to stay ahead of the competition.

Building better tools for user workflow

Through my time with customers it became clear that the data gathered through Glenigan was being taken offline early in the lead generation process. This data was being manipulated and shared outside of our product, meaning Glenigan lacked visibility of the how clients used this valuable information.

We needed to explore ways to help users complete these tasks inside Glenigan, making the product a crucial part of their daily workflow.

Freeing up customer time

User research showed that customers were spending large amounts of time mining Glenigan for sales leads. The value and accuracy of the data justified this effort, but was a slow and frustrating process. Performance of the existing system was poor - the user experience would be improved greatly by improving speed alone.

Missing out on important customer metrics

After finding the right data, time was spent tracking, analysing, and sharing leads with sales teams: another consuming step that was being tackled a variety of ways. Glenigan had no visibility of lead value being managed per client, a metric which could prove useful during renewal discussions with customers.

"The real value would come through allowing users to track leads more effectively"

Bringing lead tracking into Glenigan

The requirement to completely rethink the Glenigan interface was clear. It wasn’t responsive, load times were poor, and usability tests highlighted plenty of opportunity to smooth out the product workflow. The real value would come through allowing users to track leads more effectively in the product. Setting Glenigan apart from new competition, ‘Opportunity Manager’ and ‘Follow’ features would become central to the updated value proposition.

Exploring new ways to work

Design of the improved customer workflow started on paper. Rapidly working through variations, refinements were made before bringing promising ideas to life through prototypes.

Prototypes were created for all core areas of the search and consume process. I took a mobile-first approach, tackling the interface on small screens before moving to larger viewports.

Proof of concept experiments

The Glenigan redevelopment would be a long-term engagement, requiring a multiple discovery and design loops throughout the project.

Where appropriate, important features were broken into proof of concept pieces; small, discrete experiments to explore new development or design ideas. This approach enabled us to test regularly, de-risking the project by gathering feedback and findings at important milestones.

Customer input was crucial throughout the project. I would engage with users from early discovery through to interface testing, ensuring the product was relevant and usable.

When appropriate, test sessions were organised at a conveniently located test lab in central London. The findings from these tests fed back into short term product iteration and the longer-term roadmap.

A fresh, responsive brand

As validated prototypes became viable product areas, I would begin developing the product’s new look and feel.

Updating the existing Glenigan brand, I created a new design language for the rebuilt product. Taking a component-based approach, the interface was broken down into a documented pattern library. This would continue to grow throughout the project, providing the building blocks for future product areas.

Positive product metrics and award-winning innovation

After initial launch to a small beta sample of users, I would work with Glenigan to iteratively improve the product experience until full launch.

"Glenigan would win the Digital Innovation of the Year award at the PPA Awards"

Although initially engaged to work with the team until launch, the relationship would be extended as we developed further product features and improvements. This successful collaboration would result in an uplift in subscription renewal rates, and improved customer perception of the brand and product.

Glenigan would also be recognised through industry awards, winning Digital Innovation of the Year (Business Media) award at the PPA Awards 2016, and shortlisted for Design/UX Product of the Year at the Digital Awards of the same year.

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