SETTING THE STAGE
Exa produces software used by companies such as BMW, Ford and Toyota that simulates aerodynamic, thermal and acoustics environments reducing reliance on high-cost physical prototypes. This minimizes design failures as well as improves quality and performance.
Our challenge was to design a site that reinforces Exa’s position as a disruptive technology as well as a leader in their industry. The UX design needed to use the latest in design and user interaction techniques for displaying content, conversion (lead generation), information architecture, navigation and multilingual translations while still remaining search friendly.
We first researched Exa's industry as well as best-in-class design examples. Areas we focused on include:
Creating a responsive homepage with full-screen imagery and a horizontal scroller.
A drop down multilingual menu navigation system was designed to include two levels to access second and third level pages. The mega menu will eventually be used with 5 other languages in addition to English.
Much thought was put into a product matrix, displayed at the bottom of each product page. This infographic makes it easy for potential customers to understand Exa’s product family.
Rows, Panels, and Scrollers
This part of the homepage shows 3 popular design techniques: rows, panels and a horizontal scroller.
This makes it easier for the viewer to access content and provides a more engaging experience. Other benefits include the ability to easily pull and prioritize content from other parts of the site onto the homepage.
This feature allows a user to search by Industry and Application.
The Exa blog incorporates best practices such as full-screen imagery, a scroller of most recent posts, a most popular posts block, tags, and integration with a Mailchimp RSS template.
The Exa marketing team regularly edits and adds to the site. Making the site easy to maintain was a key goal of the project. The site was built with the content management system Drupal which allows for easy WYSIWYG (no coding needed) editing as well as a flexible back end architecture.
The site has been well received by the client and target audiences. It represents an improvement in the areas of: user interface design, user experience design, accessibility (localization for Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and English languages), an improved blog, calls to action, conversion and lead generation, content, mobile optimization, social media integration, and ease of use (mega menus, search).