As the nation’s third largest auction house, it isn’t surprising that Heritage Auctions has a wide range of users. On the one hand, they serve high-volume collectors that use ha.com as a tool to do business. These power-users are seeking efficiency and have no patience for lengthy load times or expansive page layouts. On the other hand, experiential categories such as luxury items or real estate attract exploratory users who expect to be wowed. The challenge was to maintain a cohesive web experience, accommodate various user types and, at the same time, optimize for device-specific behavior.
The first step in the process was to develop a multi-screen strategy. This consisted of mapping existing interface elements, identifying their purpose and translating them into a touch environment. Through this effort, we were able to form a set of responsive components that served as building blocks for the design.
Throughout the interface design process, we uncovered opportunities to simplify the on-screen presentation. Every design element had a specific purpose and was carefully placed, based on context, to help users explore and discover. We accounted for multiple UI states, limitations of screen size and touch versus click interactions – orchestrating the sequence of events that occurred at each responsive breakpoint.
The site launched after two years of design and development and was a huge success. Mobile traffic went through the roof while desktop power users appreciated the increased efficiency of the new design. This was by far the biggest, most complex project in Dotvita’s history. It was great to work alongside the Heritage team and see this huge endeavor take shape.
Michael Weems, Chief Digital Officer