Seattle Pops

Designed an award-winning website for Seattle Pops while I produced pops in the kitchen in my summers in college.
Timeline:
Sep 2019-Dec 2019

Project Type
WordPress Website

Role
UI/UX Designer, Kitchen Worker

Tools
WordPress, Photoshop, Figma 

Context

In college, I was employed at Seattle Pops, a local popsicle store in Seattle, Washington. My role involved working as part of the kitchen crew, where we produced thousands of popsicles daily. As part of a Multimedia Authoring course at Washington State University, I undertook the task of redesigning the Seattle Pops website. 

The Problem

The existing Seattle Pops website, developed in 2013, presents significant usability challenges, including the absence of a visual menu, a confusingly long homepage lacking clear direction, and accessibility issues, necessitating a comprehensive redesign to improve user experience and inclusivity.

Solution

My goal was to create a website that was not only more accessible but also provided customers with a clearer understanding of the brand and its products. The redesign was well-received by the store’s owner, who decided to adopt my design and integrate it into their existing hosting service.

Design Process

My design process was inspired from knowledge I learned in my multimedia authoring class with an in-depth exploration of UI/UX principles, digital accessibility standards, and current trends in website design. This research phase laid the foundation for informed decision-making throughout the project.

Landscape Anaylsis

To craft a visually compelling website for Seattle Pops, a comprehensive landscape analysis was conducted. Drawing inspiration from renowned ice cream shops such as Molly Moon in Seattle, Panhandle Ice Cream in Idaho, and King of Pops, the design process aimed to capture the essence of these establishments while infusing a distinctive identity for Seattle Pops.

User Persona

The website redesign was driven by the needs of event coordinators, parents, and foodies, ensuring easy access to catering, a user-friendly experience for families, and a display of diverse flavors for culinary enthusiasts, streamlining the site for efficiency and engagement.

Events Coordinator

I plan big parties and always look for special snacks that everyone will talk about. Finding a place that makes tasty and unique treats easily makes my events a hit.

Parent

I love taking my kids out for a treat that’s both yummy and made with care. Finding a spot that offers this makes our family time even more fun.

Foodie Influencer

I love exploring the diverse culinary scene of Seattle, trying out all the different restaurants and food spots the city has to offer. Discovering unique flavors and dishes is my passion, and there’s nothing better than finding a new favorite.

Early Prototypes

The images below showcase a few low-fidelity wireframes, which served as the foundational blueprint for this project. These initial sketches provided a visual roadmap, allowing us to experiment with layout, navigation paths, and the placement of key elements tailored to our identified user personas.

Visual Design

While developing the Seattle Pops website, establishing strong branding through visual design was a key focus. The brand’s colors, including orange and light green, were a joy to work with, allowing me to evoke a sense of joy and happiness that popsicles naturally bring to people.

Homepage Design Decision

The original Seattle Pops homepage website was expansive, encouraging users to wander through a maze of options and images. The new website design simplifies this, guiding users directly to three key areas at the bottom of the page, with a focus on making the catering section easily accessible for event coordinators to place wholesale orders. 

This design decision was influenced by Barry Schwartz’s “The Paradox of Choice,” which highlights how limiting choices can decrease anxiety and enhance decision-making satisfaction by addressing the downsides of choice overload.

Popsicle Menu Design Decision

From my experience working at Seattle Pops physical store, I noticed a compelling trend: the color of a popsicle often sways the flavor choice for both kids and adults. With this insight, the new website menu was thoughtfully redesigned to feature high-quality images of each popsicle, spotlighting the vibrant colors that captivate our customers’ attention.

This visual-first approach not only allows users to feast their eyes on the array of flavors but also invites curiosity, encouraging them to discover and perhaps try new options they might not have considered before.

Final Designs

The new Seattle Pops website boasts a complete redesign, featuring:

  • Enhanced Menu Structure: Intuitive and easy-to-navigate menu for a seamless browsing experience.
  • Online Store Integration: Streamlined integration of an online store for convenient purchases.
  • Branding and Design Improvements: Aesthetically pleasing visuals and branding enhancements to elevate the overall look of the site.
Old Website
New Website

Impact & Outcomes

The owner of Seattle Pops enthusiastically embraced the redesigned website, promptly integrating it into their hosting service. The positive feedback highlighted the improved visual appeal, enhanced functionality, and intuitive user experience. I also got an A on the assignment! 

The Digital Technology and Culture program at WSU also gave me the Excellence in Interactive Technology and Development award for my project with Seattle Pops. The award is given to a student who explores the principles of web design, coding, information architecture, and usability in a global cultural context.

“Aidan’s passion for web design was evident this fall in DTC 355. In fact, for his final project, he asked to be allowed to design a new web site for the small business that he worked at over the previous summer. He asked questions, met with me, and pitched it to the business owner — and they loved it! His design is now their site, at SeattlePops.com.”
Tor de Vries
Professor

Reflection

The redesign of the Seattle Pops website was not just a solution to initial challenges but also a significant milestone in my career as a Website Developer and UI/UX Designer.

This project was instrumental in paving the way for me to undertake more website projects, specifically for small businesses, nonprofits, and educational institutions.

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Kamiak Butte VR

App to Support Virtual Placed-Based Learning of a rural area County park in Eastern Washington. 

Overview

I started the Kamiak Butte VR project in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the shift to distance learning for an undergraduate Ecology course at Washington State University.
 
Using virtual reality, computers, and mobile devices this project enables students to engage in a 360° virtual exploration and learning experience of Kamiak Butte County Park. The project was used to replace the physical field trip and is now used as supplemental support for the course. 

Timeline

August 2020 – Spring 2023 

Deliverables

VR Application, WebGL App

Contributions

Product Designer, Researcher, 360 Photogragher 

VR User Interface Design to Promote Field Studies

My master’s thesis focused on the use of the Kamiak Butte VR alongside the physical field trip in the Natural Resource Ecology course.

Design Process Grounded in User Research & Learning Theories

The design process began with extensive user research, encompassing surveys, interviews, and usability testing. This approach allowed me to gain deep insights into the needs, preferences, and behaviors of the target audience. By understanding the expectations and pain points of users, I could tailor the virtual exploration of Kamiak Butte County Park to meet their specific requirements.

Prototypes & Iterative Design

Over a span of four years, I implemented several iterative designs for students in the Natural Resource Ecology course. The images below visually depict the evolution of my design iterations for this project. These pictures truly illustrate my growth as an interaction designer over the years.

2020 Design

2021 Design

2022 Design

2023 Design

User Feedback Designs

I collected feedback from over 150+ students through surveys and interviews. This information was employed iteratively in the design process of the project.

Information Architecture & Level Design

Originally, I implemented a user interface with six buttons, each starting a different tour. However, user feedback revealed navigation challenges, particularly difficulty in finding scenes within a tour. To address this, I redesigned the UI, incorporating multiple tabs to simplify scene selection within each tour.

  • “My biggest problem was trying to find a section of one scene across the entire site”

Label Improvments

Maybe students expressed that better labels on the real world UI componets would improve their  navigation in the experience in the tour, therefore I added labels under hotspot icons to improve the users experience.  

  • “Everything is amazing, only thing I would add it video/picture titles before you click on the video.”

3D Map Interactions

Initially, the 3D visitor center featured a non-interactive topographic map for aesthetics. Responding to student feedback, I added interactive features to the 3D map, allowing users to explore data overlays and location markers.

  • “I think a way to improve the hybrid field trip experience is the lobby that you first access. It would be cool if you could move and see the topography of Kamiak Butte from that little display up close.”

Seasonal Change

The Seasonal Change componet of the project was orgnially my idea and alot of students expressed their apperication for this aspect of the tour. Therefore, I worked to create improve the UI to change seasons. 

  • “The favorite part of the virtual field trip was being able to see seasonal changes without having to wait for it to happen in real life.”

A New way to Discorver & Learn about the Natural World

Kamiak Butte VR is a one of a kind project which promotes place-based learning in a rural area in Washington State.

Collaberation & Technology

I’m grateful for 50+ Washington State University students and faculty who volunteered to work on the Kamiak Butte VR project. We secured two grants totaling $45,000 to support the development of the project.

Results

Kamiak Butte VR has been successfully integrated into the curriculum of the Natural Resource Ecology course for six consecutive semesters spanning a three-year period. With over 500 students actively engaging with the software as a vital component of their classroom activities, it remains an integral part of the course, complementing the traditional physical field trip to Kamiak Butte.

  • This hybrid combination completely blew my mind! During the break I spent hours showing my family this virtual site. Everyone was excited to see the animals, the snow on the months with the panoramic views.
  • The effort and time put into this website are astonishing, it is extremely organized and aesthetically pleasing to the eye. 

Seattle Pops

Web Design

Overview

Seattle Pops, a beloved popsicle store located in Seattle, Washington, played a significant role in my undergraduate journey. Taking on the roles of WordPress Developer, UI/UX Designer, and Information Architect, I spearheaded a transformative redesign of their website during the Fall of 2019 as part of the Multimedia Authoring course at Washington State University.

Timeline

September 2019 – December 2019

Deliverables

Website UI, Online Store, New Menu, 

Contributions

Website Design, Protyopes

Screenshots

The project’s foundation lay in the creation of detailed prototypes and wireframes. 

Style Sheet

Seattle Pops logo colors contain fun bright colors. It was really cool to integrate thier colors throughout the website to make elements pop!  Careful consideration was given to typography, color schemes, and imagery to evoke a sense of the Seattle Pops experience. The result was a visually captivating platform that resonated with the brand’s identity and captivated users.

Typograghy

ABC Diatype

Mint

Mint

Mint

Protoypes

The project’s foundation lay in the creation of detailed prototypes and wireframes. These served as the blueprint for the website’s structure and functionality.

Information Architecture

Restructing the information on the seattle pops website was critical in 

A pivotal aspect of the redesign was the strategic restructuring of the website’s information architecture. This involved reimagining the menu structure, streamlining content categorization, and optimizing the flow of information. The goal was to create an intuitive and seamless browsing experience for visitors.

Old

Flavors

Locations

Catering

Our Story

Contact Us

Online Shop

New

Home 

Menu 

Locations 

Order Online 

Catering

Giving Back 

 

Old with the New

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Old Website

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New Website

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Development Pictures

Throughout the project, collaboration was at the forefront of our approach. Engaging with the Seattle Pops team, we captured moments that exemplified the synergy and dedication poured into the redesign. These candid snapshots serve as a testament to the collaborative spirit that fueled the project’s success.

Results & Reflection

The culmination of our efforts was met with resounding approval from the owner of Seattle Pops, who seamlessly integrated the redesigned website into their hosting service. This not only elevated the online presence of Seattle Pops but also garnered recognition from the Digital Technology and Culture program at WSU.

“which recognizes students who explores the principles of web design, coding, information architecture, and usability in a global cultural context”

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