Caley Ostrander

Case Study: Birchbox

 
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Created a new digital box experience on Birchbox.com to serve as the online destination for everything in a subscriber's physical box.     

 
 

 
 

A new digital box experience to compliment the exciting physical experience

The Birchbox subscriber's experience of receiving a monthly box of personalized samples directly to their door is an exciting one. Subscribers frequently share their "beauty hauls" with friends on social media, even posting "unboxing" videos on YouTube where viewers can join in on the excitement as the subscriber lifts the lid for the first time to discover what's inside.

 
 
 
 

But when it came to the website, this excitement didn't translate. The online box page was a long list of links that drove subscribers off to product detail pages to buy the product, and the "specialness" of the individual box was lost. 

 

We wanted to enhance this online experience and bring it full circle, where a personalized "box page" would become the digital hub for the physical box contents and monthly themes.

 
 
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Making information accessible and centralized


Rather than driving subscribers off to exterior pages to learn about their products, we wanted to centralize all the information by surfacing it on one page.


Having this depth of information in one place, we also needed a high-level view of all the samples received in that month that subscribers can quickly scan and see all at a glance. 

 
 

Other Considerations

What the digital translation of the box experience also lacked was a closer tie-in to the box's monthly theme, which is an important branding moment for the physical box. Without this curated component online, the digital box page lacked the personality that differentiates Birchbox from other players in the space. 

 
 
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Utility and curation

The redesigned box page allows for the perfect balance of utility and curation. The top skyline image introduces the theme front and center, building a curated framework for the products below. Within that image, the theme and month are announced and a dropdown allows users to fluidly navigate between months. 

 
 


The module of thumbnails below the skyline gives subscribers a quick glance of all of their samples and allows them to toggle between them. Toggling the products in this view changes out the product information below, allowing for a deeper level of information to be learned about each product. From this expanded view, subscribers can purchase, add to favorites, review, read product information, and browse & filter posted reviews.

 

Additional "helpful" voting functionality was added in to the reviews section, allowing for users to prioritize content themselves. This sets up a paradigm that pushes relevant information to the top and less helpful information toward the bottom. 

 

Building off this initial approach, we flushed out mobile web version of the box page that leveraged the same features in a more tap-able and digestible way. From a list of months in a grid of theme imagery, subscribers can easily revisit their past boxes and swipe through past samples from each month, clicking to view deeper content about individual products. Rather than making this a lightweight version of the desktop experience, we challenged ourselves to include all the same features and functionality. 

 

In addition, a "samples history" page was designed to serve as the history page for every sample received from Birchbox. This way, someone looking for a sample from a previous month can flip to this view and scan all past products at once rather than flipping in between months on the box detail page. 

 

Because of this effort, each subscriber now gets their own space on the site that's personal, intimate and curated while still exposing them to the larger e-commerce features of the larger site. It's a space that each subscriber can call their home within Birchbox.com and interact with their products at their own pace.


Credits

In collaboration with Birchbox


CREATIVE DIRECTION, DESIGN, CONCEPTING & UX
Caley Ostrander, Heather Shoon, Christian Wallin, Jess Williams


IMAGERY
Charlie Cooper, Lyndsay Nevins, Kathleen Lynch


DEVELOPMENT
Shilpan Baghat, Jason Walker Yung


PRODUCT MANAGEMENT
Dave Morrison