The lockdown (March-June 2020) has boosted BackMarket's activity (its sales doubled compared to the period preceding the pandemic) and the recent fundraising (110 M € - May 2020) allows the company to support its international ambitions, particularly on the US market.
In order to support this growth and with the objective of improving sales conversion, increasingly regular marketing operations are carried out throughout the year on the website relying on advertising inserts produced internally by the company's design team.
We have gone from a model of generating banners by hand (very tedious considering the number of formats and countries to adapt to), to an interface that directly generates all the formats after a quick funnel to complete. A huge time saving, but also a more precise result thanks to the implementation of precise guidelines.
Agathe Brault, Art Director @Backmarket
Banner creation at scale
The advertising slots on the backmarket.com website are numerous and cover a set of 15 non-standardized dimensions (web and mobile formats). For each marketing operation, a minimum of 3 products are pushed and 8 languages must be supported in order to cover all the countries in which BackMarket is present.
This results in:
The design team is responsible for the creation of these banners and transferring them to the marketing team, who then inserts them on the site.
Manual production through a traditional design tool
Once the marketing content and the template are validated, the banner production process can begin.
The members of the team share the work (languages, products). Each designer must produce a set of 15 banners per product/language, which involves:
- Using a design software (Sketch / Figma / Illustrator…).
- Inserting marketing content in the right place.
- Making sure that the elements are well positioned and that the banner respects the brand guidelines.
- Repeating the same efforts for each dimension.
This amounts to 9 days of work in total spread across 3 designers to produce 360 banners.
This task is extremely tedious since it requires maximum focus and organization from the designer on his design tool (Sketch, Figma ...) and no longer requires any creativity on his part, which reduces his well-being at work, thus, its implication and productivity.
Alessandro Stigliani, CEO @Abyssale
Obviously, as this task is manual, it involves human errors in the process (positioning/alignment of elements, text size ...), which are not always respected and result in a lack of consistency throughout the banners.
Automatic visual production with Abyssale
Contacted by BackMarket on this matter, the Abyssale team proposed the following approach to address this issue:
#1 • Each template will be integrated by the Abyssale team into its generation tool via their proprietary banner description model.
These templates contain the exact number of formats (dimensions) necessary as well as all the additional design rules provided by BackMarket (custom fonts, different background/text colors, text sizes, vertical/horizontal positioning of the elements, the integration of proprietary stickers ...).
#2 • Banner generation is managed on the online Abyssale tool.
In order to meet the banner generation requests, a funnel (spreadsheet) is available in which each element (main/secondary text, product image, etc.) can be registered as well as certain finer settings affecting the design. In order to control if the result is correct, the generation of a banner is carried out, which allows visual approval before carrying through with the complete generation process.
#3 • Once the request is approved, the banners are automatically generated by the Abyssale tool.
A zip containing all the banners is sent to the people involved and a project on the online tool is also created, inside it each banner can be edited and exported (Retina @ 1x or @ 2x). If necessary, adjustments can be made after the fact through an editor.
The perks of this approach
Beyond the obvious time savings for the design team, the implementation of this approach made the following possible:
- Standardize banner production and therefore guarantee optimal results.
- Support the growth of BackMarket's business through increasingly frequent marketing operations, tailor-made to suit all countries.
- Free up time for more strategic tasks.
- Unify banner production on a tool allowing efficient collaboration (approval of banners before production, comments ...).