Valspar is a subsidiary of the world’s biggest paint manufacturer, Sherwin-Williams, and one of the most popular paint brands on the market.
While it’s built a strong reputation for the quality of its paint products, Valspar didn’t have the digital experience to match.
When the national lockdown struck, consumers were investing more in their homes, and digital demand was quickly on the rise. Valspar needed to capitalise on it.
Thanks to its state-of-the-art colour matching technology, Valspar can create any colour the eye can see. However, this USP can present customers with a paradox of choice which can hinder the decision-making process — especially online, where competitor products are never more than a few clicks away.
The core challenges to overcome were:
- How could we both simplify the user journey and accelerate the paths to purchase?
- And beyond that, how could we attract new consumers, while keeping existing customers coming back?
Bridging the gap between on and offline experiences
Even though Valspar is a long-term client, our knowledge of the DIY market told us that audience behaviour, motivations, trends and triggers are ever-changing — so we moved quickly to find the very latest insights.
We conducted interviews with territory managers at B&Q; to discover current customer queries and pain-points when in-store. We combined this with a digital analysis, auditing Valspar’s website and identifying barriers and pitfalls in the user journey. We then looked at what competitors were doing, and considered how we could take Valspar’s digital experience a brushstroke above.
More than just a fresh lick of paint
Impressions are everything in the world of web design, and the existing Valspar website could do more to present the brand in its best light. That’s where our creative team stepped in.
Led by the insight gained from our discovery phase, we crafted a fresh design concept for the homepage. Then, we used this as the baseline to introduce a site-wide design language. This features neutral tones contrasted against brushstrokes of colour and contemporary photography, which help bring the Valspar brand to life.
On top of that, we revamped the menu design to improve ease of navigation, redesigned on-page components — such as the call-to-action pods — and simplified the user-interface, resulting in a friendlier and more modern aesthetic.
Finally, as Valspar is sold exclusively through B&Q and diy.com, rather than directly through the Valspar website, we took action to make the purchase path from the Valspar website to the retailer website as frictionless as possible.
A flexible and scalable CMS
While we were optimising the front-end, our development team migrated the Valspar website — previously hosted on Umbraco 7 — onto Umbraco 10. This was important as Umbraco 7 was nearing its end-of-life and would no longer receive updates, security patches or community support.
We implemented a custom-solution that helped maintain the website’s integrity and structure, providing all the flexibility and scalability needed for a market-leading paint brand.
Then, to get the Valspar team up-to-speed with the solution, our Umbraco certified team provided expert CMS training, so they felt comfortable editing and interacting within the back-end of the site.
Inspiring integrations and a Virtual Assistant
From our initial discovery phase we knew that consumers were calling-out for inspirational digital experiences that at the same time, helped them find the right product, faster.
So, we developed a suite of fresh features and functionality, including colour trends, which presents the most popular Valspar collections, plus a lookbook which pulls together the latest user-generated content from socials and the wider web.
Then we introduced the pièce de résistance, the Valspar Virtual Assistant. Accessible online or in-store (via QR code), the Valspar Virtual Assistant is a digital application designed to guide customer purchase decisions, offering interactive tools, such as:
- A photo uploader: helping users pin-point a paint colour by uploading a photo from their device
- A colour visualiser: visualising what that colour would look like in their home
- A coverage calculator: determining the quantity and cost of paint needed for the project
- Informative video guides: guiding users through this journey from inspiration to purchase while suggesting the latest colour trends
All of these features are packaged into one helpful hub, helping customers define their project, choose the right colour, purchase the perfect product (and have fun along the way).
A simple, seamless user journey
Adding new features and functionality was just the start. The insights gained from our discovery process told us there were more steps we could take to enhance the user journey and streamline the paths to purchase.
Our team delivered wide-scale improvements to the website taxonomy and page structure, while streamlining the check-out process, optimising the ecommerce functionality, and tweaking call-to-action terminology and positioning. Then, we set up A/B testing to put our solutions to the test.
Supercharging site speed
Our development team set their sights on the overall performance of the website, optimising the site's code and enhancing the caching mechanisms to ensure it ran at lightning-pace — great for users (and search engines). On top of that, we integrated Elasticsearch to provide a speedy and scalable product and site search.
Powerful performance marketing
Soon, after rigorous testing and reviews, the new website was live and kicking. But every new site needs footfall — after all, there’s no use having a fantastic shop hidden down a quiet side street in a busy town. So we developed and delivered a roadmap of omni-channel marketing activity to build brand awareness, drive traffic, clicks and conversions, and keep customers coming back.
We left no canvas untouched, targeting key audience segments identified in our discovery phase, and turning up the volume across a range of channels, from paid and organic search to PR, paid social and programmatic.
And, as is standard at Enjoy, we set-up robust reporting measures to ensure that all activity could be continually traced, tested and optimised.
By working closely with the client at every step, we built a market-leading website that’s simple, slick and seamless, while fast, fun and friendly to use. And all supported by powerful performance marketing across its paid, owned and earned channels. Now, Valspar can truly deliver on its tagline, “colour with confidence”.
Since launch, Valspar’s new digital experience has quickly got people talking; receiving praise from its internal teams, partners, and customers. And the results? They paint a picture of splashing success:
- 66% YOY increase in website conversions
- 54% YOY increase in paid conversions
- 23% YOY increase in website sessions
- 35% YOY increase in website users
This project has also received industry-wide recognition, awarded B2C Website of the Year at the 2023 Digital Growth Awards and Best Partner Solution at the Umbraco Awards.
Tobie Lewis, Head of Marketing, Valspar