Piers ThorogoodDirector and Co-Founder | We Make Websites
What is your favourite thing about designing/developing for ecommerce?
I love the fact that you can have huge influence on the success of a business. A small design tweak you make to a product page could result in a significant increase to the client's bottom line.
What ecommerce trend do you hate?
Hamburger menus on desktop. I know it's tempting to do this to get that super minimal aesthetic, but it makes navigating around the site painful and slow. I'm not saying never do it, but there has to be a very strong case for doing so that outweighs the usability downside.
Where do you go for design/development inspiration?
I can get inspiration from all over the place, but when I'm looking for beautifully designed websites, Site Inspire is my go to.
What’s your favourite web font?
I'm quite partial to Neuzeit Grotesk — an oldie but a goodie.
Who’s your current ecomm crush?
I loved the work Bureau Borsche did for Balenciaga this year. It's a really bold move to strip the website back to such a minimal form. It fits the brands current aesthetic perfectly, but I suspect the site's usability is somewhat compromised.
What’s your jam while working?
Depends on my mood and what I'm working on, but I've been listening to a lot of Run The Jewels recently.
What’s your favourite Shopify app and why?
Forsberg +two's Orderly Email app. No one likes building emails, so having a set of beautifully designed out-of-the box Shopify notification emails is a godsend.
How did you start designing Shopify sites?
About 6 years ago we were looking for a simple e-com platform for a start-up jewellery designer (we'd previously been building in Drupal or Wordpress with e-commerce plug-ins). Shopify let us focus on design without getting in our way. Not long after that we went Shopify-only and haven't looked back.
What’s the best design advice someone has given you?
I think the best piece of advice I've been given relates design leadership... You'll get the best out of your designers if you give them autonomy. Give people the freedom to create and they'll make great things. This isn't something that came naturally to me so I've had to force my self to step back a little.
What Shopify project are you most proud of?
Of the live sites we have out there, I think Finisterre is one of our best. They're a very design focused brand and have beautiful photography, so working with those guys is always a pleasure.