June 13, 2007. Brooklyn. IKEA announces a new website design, currently rolling out in 24 countries worldwide. The new website features an increased focus on the sharing of IKEA furnishing knowledge with consumers. Where other retailers are delivering basic data on products, prices, and promotions, IKEA is dedicated to granting the customer full access to its celebrated home furnishing knowledge.
Room images on the new site are fully interactive- users can engage with the images and see tips and ideas for a variety of products and everyday situations. "The trick was to develop a user interface that balances efficiency and discovery," says Gene Liebel, Partner and Director of User Experience at Huge. "Research shows that IKEA customers have very high expectations for the IKEA website — they expect an experience that is about much more than just the presentation of basic product information. They want to learn how to improve their lives at home, and they want everything integrated into a single, usable workflow, organized by the rooms of their house."
The new site architecture is based on the rooms of the house: Bedroom, Children's Room, Dining Room, Kitchen, Living Room, Workspace, Basement, Garage, Attic, Hallway & Entrance, Laundry Room, and Youth Room. Another change is an expanded role and more prominent position for "Ask Anna", the automated customer service chat character driven by artificial intelligence. Anna has proven to be very effective in providing 24/7 support and advice to millions of IKEA customers worldwide, reducing support costs.
Says Allan Lidforsen, IKEA Online Group Manager, "It is a great challenge to translate the IKEA brand values and visual identity to the Internet, and we are very content with the work Huge has done for us in this area. Their design feels very much like IKEA, but what's even more interesting, they keep us focused on the evolving goals and habits of the online customer." Huge is the interactive agency of record for IKEA and handles strategy, creative, and production for the furniture retailer's retail and corporate websites in over 20 markets worldwide.
The U.S. version of the site is available at www.ikea-usa.com.
About Huge: Huge is a digital agency that provides business strategy, design, marketing and technology services to some of the world's largest businesses and best-known brands. The company is known for successfully harmonizing user needs and business goals to create industry-changing digital experiences for its clients. Huge has offices based in the United States, Europe and Latin America, and is part of the Interpublic Group of Companies.