A New Approach To E-Commerce.

or phase 1 of our new shop

Lost My Name make magical personalised gifts for children. So far we have two wonderful books: The Little Boy or Girl Who Lost Their Name and The Incredible Intergalactic Journey Home.

We have plans to make lots more but we face a bit of a challenge and that is that our website (where we sell our gifts) wasn’t really made for more than one product, our first book.

Adding new products isn’t straightforward.

This isn’t ideal.

In order for us to change this we need rethink the way we, as a company, approach e-commerce. That means building a shopping experience that not only allows us to add new products much faster but that also gives our customers the freedom to browse and create multiple personalised gifts, in a simple and consistent way.

In short, a proper e-commerce platform.

So, the brief for us (the Digital Design team) looked a little like this…

  • turn our single-product website into a multi-product shop
  • move the site from book to product creation
  • simplify and make consistent the shopping experience
  • encourage multi-product creation in a single session
  • increase average order value
  • increase lifetime value
  • increase conversion

This is a significant project with many twists and tales. If I were to cover them all in this post: the design process, user testing, split testing, the blood, the sweat, the tears, we’d all be here for days.

So i’ll save that for another post. Mmmmmm blogging.

What I will do however is give you a quick introduction to this fella…

The Creation Canvas

A flexible, scalable and recognisable editing environment for all personalised gifts.

(Quick someone write that down).

The Little Boy Who Lost His Name in the Creation Canvas
Creation Canvas on a mobile device

The Creation Canvas marks a significant milestone in a much broader company strategy, and whilst this is just the first phase, I want to explain the importance of the 3 points I just mentioned.

Flexible

Firstly, 70% of visitors to our website are on mobile devices so, as with all of our briefs, it’s essential that the canvas, and the tools for personalising a product, be flexible enough to work as seamlessly on a phone as it does a monster retina display.

Scalable

At this moment in time we don’t know how future products might be personalised. In fact, we don’t what future products might be (no spoilers).

For that reason the Canvas needs to be able to accommodate not only books but any product and means of personalisation.

That’s no simple task and is one of the main reasons we designed drawers in to the Canvas.

Drawers allow us to contain complex personalisation functionality without detracting from the preview of the product.

We’re also able to design new drawers on a product by product basis. So in the example below, where the Canvas contains The Incredible Intergalactic Journey Home, you’ll notice the Address drawer being used rather than the Format drawer.

Clever int it.

Recognisable

I use recognisable as my final point as this is possibly the most important.

One of the biggest goals of this project was to simplify and make consistent the shopping experience on our site. By creating consistency we’re able to create patterns.

Patterns are important for recognition.

In this example, it means that when a user is presented with the Canvas in other areas of the site, or when browsing different products, they recognise and understand what they’re required to do. This simplifies the experience for our users, and makes multi-product creation much more straightforward too.

We have many grand ideas for future functionality for the canvas. I’ll be posting about phase 2 soon, as well as a piece on our design process and maybe even some lovely little nuggets of data. You lucky devils.

Anyway, thats all for now.

Over and out.


We’re on a mission to make every child’s bedtime a little more magical. Want to join us? We’re hiring!