What was the scope of their involvement?
The initial project focused on getting off of our old CMS [content management system] and adopting a new user-friendly platform. From a creative standpoint, we were looking to reskin and update our website. The content was more of a merge with our current internal databases, so much of the infrastructure was already in place. It was simply a matter of building a new site backend on WordPress and redesigning the frontend. Inverse Paradox also came up with a few revisions and recommendations for optimization and user experience.
After 1 ½ to 2 months, we had a fire in the warehouse that stored all of our servers. Along with our IT team, Inverse Paradox jumped into action. As a result, we managed to launch the site 6 months early. It didn’t have all its pages, but there were enough for us to have an online presence. Inverse Paradox understood a lot of our concerns and questions about where we would be housing the new site. Inverse Paradox hosted the site on their servers and got our company up and running.
We still had to revise and update the site, creating a final version with a blog and all other integrations worked into it. Inverse Paradox started work on revisions and updates to the wireframe. We had about 4–5 revisions. They worked with our internal team on the creative part. The site was launched with full usability over a 3-month time period. It could have gone faster, but many of the timing issues were on us. We needed to get the right stakeholders to approve the designs. Inverse Paradox remained accountable, and they made revisions on our site within a week of us sending our notes.
We also wanted to have video integration on our homepage slider, preferably with a fast load time. At first, IT told us it would be a lot to ask for because of the required bandwidth. However, we wanted to show highlights of the new commercial we were running. In case consumers saw the commercial on TV and searched for our page, they would know they’ve come to the right place. There were a couple of visual cues iconic to that commercial, and Inverse Paradox was able to integrate that with WordPress. They also gave us a nice tool with which we could load video files for background playback instead of stock images.
In total, Inverse Paradox has redeveloped 5 sites, some of which we’re in the middle of reworking. We also ask them to create new pages and custom wireframes for promotions.
I don’t know how large their team is, which can be viewed as a good thing from a customer satisfaction standpoint. Our account rep has been available every day between 8:30 and 6:00. He answers feedback questions and relays information from his team. There is at least one other, higher account manager who has stepped in on high-profile projects that required additional team members. Inverse Paradox’s principal has also been available at a moment’s notice. It has been nice to see him take pride in the work and provide clarity when needed. There are 1–2 developers working on our site, but I’ve only interacted with the account managers. Some people would view it as a negative, but I don’t mind having streamlined communication.
How did you come to work with Inverse Paradox?
We found Inverse Paradox through one of our designers. I met their principal, who pitched how he could save the project we already had. He also promised to deliver within a certain time period, meeting our key promotional season. Neil [Co-Founder and Director of Business Development, Inverse Paradox] came to us and presented the tools he could offer for getting our development and maintenance under one roof. He told us that he’d either done it before or could take up the new challenge. We were looking for someone who had the bandwidth and team to get answers back to us and grow with our company. It was an easy selection.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working with Inverse Paradox in February 2014.