The Hair Messiah

The Hair Messiah is an LA based hair stylist that provides a variety of services inside and outside of the salon.

Challenge

The Hair Messiah needs a site built from scratch on no budget, where her current clients, as well as prospective clients, can access her services.

Solution

Create a mobile first site that displays The Hair Messiah's styling portfolio, services, and online appointment booking.

Scope

Role: UX/UI Designer
Platform: Mobile & Desktop site
Tools: Pen & Paper, Wix, Squarespace

Design

Breaking Conventions

At the kickoff meeting, the client established her singular goal was to translate her business card, which was based on a collage she made, into the GUI for her site. She proposed ideas like clicking the strawberry would open the lookbook and the lips would open the styling services menu. 

Usability Testing

Although the collage GUI could be a unique concept, I advised that it also could be counterintuitive for her clients trying to book hair services. To find out, I suggested conducting usability testing with a paper prototype to see what the user's pain points and frustrations would be with the proposed GUI.

New Inspiration

After creating the paper prototype, but before conducting usability tests I had a follow up meeting during which the client shared some inspirational sites. The sites had simple, clean aesthetics that followed standard design practices. These sites were very unlike the collage GUI concept. At this point I dove into questions about her services and clientele to get a better understanding of what she was trying to accomplish with her site aside from the collage GUI.

 

I learned that her styling had several different categories of looks, she offered a wide variety of services inside and outside of the salon, and that most of her clients booked online. From this conversation her business goals became more clear, and the information architecture as well as a style guide started to form.

Choosing A CMS

At this point the collage GUI was not off the table yet and I still needed to conduct usability tests to understand the viability of the concept. I suggested Wix for a CMS, this would allow us to choose a simple, clean template to start, and I could incorporate some of the collage elements as SVG's later if need be. 

Branding

Going through her lookbook images, there was one image in particular she favored for its spiritual vibes. Considering her current presence as The Hair Messiah, I suggested using this image as a hero image to reinforce her branding. From this conversation she decided against continuing with the collage GUI concept, and instead to move ahead with a simple, clean aesthetic that would better reinforce the branding.

Switching CMS

After customizing a template in Wix, the client informed me we would need to switch to Squarespace. Her domain was already hosted at Squarespace which meant it would be more cost effective to host her site there as well. Starting the process over in the new CMS I customized a template that fit the simple, clean aesthetic she wanted. In the end she was happy with the results as they met her business goals.

Reflection

From this point I would like to look at site analytics to better understand user behaviors and to gain insights on where pages can be improved. The site currently meets The Hair Messiah's business needs, but I would like to conduct user interviews and usability testing to find out if it meets user's needs.

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