When James Boardwell asked me to help the Folksy team design the new Shop fronts for their website, I knew I would be following in the footsteps of some great designers (Jon Hicks & Andrew Pendrick). So no pressure then. However the crispy clean existing look and feel of the main website made developing the user-driven wireframe sketches a very enjoyable project. This was also due to the Folksy team being a great bunch to work with and they made me feel very welcome.
Unlike a lot of other projects and teams I have worked with, Folksy have strong communication processes with their core users (buyers and sellers) and the feedback they give really drives the design. Even as experienced people in the internet industry, we can’t just design based on our pre-conceptions of how we think something should look and function. Working in a silo and being cut off from the end users, means that releasing products with an unknown understanding of how they will be used, is often a doomed practice. So I embrace how Folksy approach their projects and the respect they give their customers. Without their loyalty, Folksy wouldn’t exist.
A mock-up of the some design tweeks to the homepage, based on feedback
The feedback has been great for the new shop fronts, but there is still work to be done as the whole website is being improved by being made leaner and more efficient. Folksy release new features to get feedback quickly and iterate to a better product, but with new ways of viewing websites on the ever-increasing number of mobile devices, we have to spend a lot of time thinking about a plethora of screen sizes. This can mean our mobile-friendly responsive approach to the design can make things go a bit wonky. Please keep letting us know and we’ll get it right for you.
This week I have been working on new features for the homepage, leading Design by Democracy, realising Doug knows a lot more about Git than he would like people to know and having my first dark chocolate Tunnock’s bar (thank you Doug). To be honest, despite all the work the team produced, the highlight was the chocolate bar! But we’ll let you decide when the new homepage features are rolled out, although we hope you prefer them to a wafer-based chocolatey snack ;-)