Gurwinder Virk
UX/UI Designer

About Anokhi

Anokhi is a restaurant located in Brampton that specializes in Indian food. Their differentiating factor is the luxurious atmosphere and looks of the location, which is further enhanced by the superior quality of their dishes.

My Role

My role in this project was to provide the company with a new, redesigned website that could effectively communicate the sophisticated experience of the restaurant.

In addition, the company also needed some consulting on their social media marketing strategy.

Problem

The main issue that the company was facing was the fact that the location was not as busy as they expected it to be.

The majority of their customers were people that had already tried their food in the past, and the few new customers that would come for the first time were usually referred by friends/family.

Anokhi was facing an important customer acquisition problem.

It wasn’t hard to understand why, however. Their website was really outdated and not user friendly at all. It failed to communicate the quality that the restaurant offers, and therefore potential customers were getting quickly turned off.

According to their Google Analytics insights, the bounce rate on the site was through the roof, and even their Adwords efforts were completely vain.

On top of that, the company was consistently failing to engage effectively on social media, being unable to convert their followers into customers.

Solution

The first thing to do was to design a new website that would reflect the modern and luxurious atmosphere of the restaurant while being easy to use in order to drive more reservations.

Secondly, I needed to come up with a better social media marketing strategy to drive traffic to the website through their main communication channels.

The UX Process

Understand

Before designing the website, I wanted to clearly define what message the company wanted to communicate to their audience. Then, I spoke with the owner to understand who is their ideal customer and helped him create a more accurate target market.

Research

After having a clearer idea of the message and the audience, I started doing some competitive research. This led me to about two potential competitors’ websites.

After analyzing them I decided to take note of some of the components/features that were working well there, so I could refer to them later.

After doing that, I decided to expand my research to websites of restaurants that are not direct competitors of Anokhi, but share a similar atmosphere and took some more notes.

Design

First thing I did after my research was to put all those insights into 3 different early prototypes and showed them to the client to see which one best resonated with them.

I knew that the bounce rate was a big problem for the company, therefore I knew that the new website needed something that could quickly grab the attention of its visitors.

To do so I opted for a slightly different landing page from the usual.

It featured a hero image of the luxurious restaurant location with the navigation bar being at the bottom instead of at the top.

I also made sure to make the reservation process as smooth as possible: the “reserve” button is conveniently located in the navigation bar and clicking on it triggers a popup menu from which customers can quickly pick a time slot and indicate the number of guests.


Below you can find both the mobile wireframe and high-fidelity versions of the website. Scroll on the devices to interact.

Desktop early wireframe

Desktop early wireframe


Below you can find both the mobile wireframe and high-fidelity versions of the website. Scroll on the devices to interact.

User Testing

Since the homepage was very unique, I wanted to make sure users could easily interact with it. To do so I decided to conduct some user testing.

The two main things that I hoped to achieve were:

- Users noticing the unique design of the homepage and the look of the restaurant
- Users being able to understand how to book a table and doing it without effort.

Both objectives were achieved and I received some really encouraging feedback throughout the testing process.
However, I noticed that more often than not users would completely forget to scroll after landing on the homepage, and they would start clicking on navigation links instead.

Because of this, I understood that I needed to find a way to let visitors know that there was more information on the homepage. To do so I decided to add a little visual cue right below the navigation bar.

After doing so, I proceeded with another testing round and I gladly noticed that the problem was solved.

Implementation

After getting the prototype approved by the client and making some final adjustments, I let the developer handle the rest of the work, while I focused on working on finding ways to improve the company’s social media.

After launching the website, I stayed in touch with the client to evaluate the final product performance and to see whether there was anything else I could have helped with.

Although I didn’t have access to the exact numbers, Anokhi told me that their bounce rate was greatly reduced and their Google Adwords campaigns were being more effective. They also saw an increase in reservations which confirmed the success of this project.

Scroll on device to see final prototype

Scroll on device to see final prototype

What I have learned from this project

This project has been crucial for my growth as a UX Designer because it really pushed me to think outside of the box.

I wanted the website to be able to delight users the same way the location does when customers walk in the first time and to do so I knew I had to challenge myself and create something unique.

While working on this project I had to combine my knowledge of UX and Marketing together, as I was dealing with issues such as website usability, but also bounce rate, pay-per-click, and more.

One of the most important things I've learned is how to effectively communicate with stakeholders as I was frequently presenting my ideas and progresses throughout the entire length of the work.

"Gurwinder understood our vision and delivered an outstanding product."
P. Gill, Anokhi