Assembling a Central System to Bridge Products

Gerren Lamson
Mar 22, 2018 · 5 min read
Illustration by Daniella Valerio

Framing the Problem

Last spring, the team decided to start building Creative Market Pro — a curated design asset subscription built to help creative professionals and teams do great design work fast.

Using Visuals to Bridge Two Products

Our first question: what would Central System look like? Stylistically, Central System leans closer to Creative Market Pro than Creative Market. It uses white for the page background and our cool grey color system for type and UI elements.

Color & Type Specimens

Shifting Features into Central System

Next we had to answer our second big question — what features should we move into Central System? We came up with the following initial list. Many of the account and cross-product tools focus on shop owners who are Pro-enabled.

Company

  • About
  • Careers
  • Brand Resources

Account Tools

  • Dashboard
  • Sales
  • Products
  • Pro (Opt-In, Earnings)
  • Payouts & Taxes
  • Settings
  • Emails*

Cross-Product

  • Global Footer
  • Global Nav
  • Single Product Editor
  • Bulk Product Uploader
  • Terms
  • Privacy Policy
  • Help Center*
  • Blog*

Show & Tell

Ok, now let’s look at some pixels. Here’s what some of the freshly designed core features that we pulled into Central System look like. For each feature listed below, I added a little bit about functionality, style, and user experience for context.

Account / Settings / Email Notifications

We added the Central System styles to the entire account area. In addition, we rebuilt the display and functionality of email notifications so that customers of both products can control notifications per each product using opt-in and opt-out toggles.

Account / Settings / Email Notifications

Shop Profile / Product Editor

For our shops (e.g. users who create assets for sale), we rolled the product editor experience into Central System styles.

  • the option to sync the details between both product listings
  • a fast way to opt the product into or out of Creative Market Pro
  • a simple approach to setting each product as draft or live (if all details are filled in)
  • the ability to save global changes at any stage of editing for both listings

Account / Pro / Opt-In

Months before launch, we built a dedicated tool to help Pro-enabled shops decide which products to opt into Creative Market Pro. They could choose between the following options: all of their products, products by category, or pick individual products from their catalog.

Account / Pro / Opt-In

Global Footer

We rebuilt the Creative Market footer so that it could be product-specific. Now, each footer reflects the product’s neutral color system (cool grays vs. warm grays) and serves up company-level details and product-specific links depending on the context.

Global Footer

Company Section / Careers

We rebuilt our Careers page with strong brand elements that bridge both products. Visuals such as gradients, color bars, spot illustrations, and Lyons don’t show up in the Central System product features displayed earlier in this article, but still technically live in Central System. They help us bridge the brand-side of Creative Market and Creative Market Pro in the company section.

Company Section / Careers

Final Thoughts

Because Central System is at the heart of our company and in the middle of our products, we expect things to change as we continue to evolve our products and brand.

Building Creative Market

Lessons from Creative Market's design, development, growth…

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