Heath Ceramics

Empowering an artisan brand with a robust e-commerce experience

Method partnered with Heath Ceramics to design the user experience and visual design for a new site, as well as coordinate the development and backend integration of a new e-commerce solution. Heath’s new, compelling visual language and back-end structure brings Heath’s brand offering and story into a cohesive online experience, as well as faithfully translates the company’s retail environments to an e-commerce experience.

www.heathceramics.com

Challenge

Heath Ceramics is a maker, gatherer, and seller of simply designed, highly functional tableware, homeware, and tile. Considered among the most enduring examples of beautiful mid-century design, Heath’s collections can be found in restaurants, homes, and museums worldwide. Headquartered in Sausalito, California since 1948, Heath’s mission is to never compromise creativity—or a sense of fun—for the demands of mass production or multi-channel distribution.

Looking for a website able to express the Heath story and extend its signature brand online, Heath tasked Method to design the user experience and visual design for the new site, as well as coordinate with tech partner, AOE Media, on the development and backend integration of a new e-commerce solution.

Method set out to produce a best-in-class experience that allows faithful users easy and seamless access to experiencing all of Heath’s offerings, and converts newcomers—such as the sizeable pool of registry customers—to brand loyalist status.

Approach

Method and Heath’s shared love for beautiful design and craftsmanship inspired a dynamic, collaborative relationship throughout the project. Onsite visits immersed Method in the Heath manufacturing process and culture, and audits of existing benchmark experiences and collateral helped Method identify Heath’s core strengths. A best practice that Method identified and leveraged for the new visual design is the masterful way Heath art directs its in-store experience. Beautifully curated lifestyle sets present Heath products in context with related products from like-minded artisan brands—everything from candles and linens to books and games—to visually tell Heath’s overall brand story. Method wanted to bring the brick-and-mortar experience online to share the history of Heath and show potential customers the care that goes into each hand-crafted product.

Understanding the Heath process not only gets shoppers excited about bringing Heath into their own homes, but also sets the expectation that, while creating good quality can sometimes take longer, it’s worth the wait.

Outcome

The redesigned site reflects the beauty, simplicity, and functionality associated with Heath. A new modular system organized by lifestyle-driven content encourages effortless discovery. Large, captivating images of thoughtfully presented products are intuitively organized, serving as both inspirational images and as a pathway to relevant product information. The result is a digital showroom able to inspire and educate Heath visitors.

Heath’s new, compelling visual language and back-end structure bring Heath’s brand offering and story into a cohesive online experience. Collaborating with Heath’s development partner to implement the website and Magento e-commerce solution, the site was successfully launched in 2012. Since launch, the new site has won various design and innovation awards. Online sales for the brand have increased 25% and overall traffic to the site is up 35%.

We wanted to bring more of our story and the making process to life with our new site, especially for our customers who don’t live near our Sausalito factory or California stores; and also introduce functionality that really helps our online customers discover and interact with our product so they can make the decision that’s best for them.
Robin Petravic
Co-Owner, Managing Director of Heath Ceramics

Pixel Awards

Winner, Commerce
2012

Most Imaginative Site of the Year

Finalist, Magento Developer’s Conference
2012