Stanley Świątkiewicz always wanted to work at Divante. Since joining in 2018 he’s grown as a Product Designer, taken part in numerous important projects for global brands, and had the chance to travel to California.
Just as Stanley came to Wrocław and started to look around for a job, he spotted an offer for a UX Designer in Divante. Thinking that it couldn’t just be a coincidence that his ideal company was advertising, he applied immediately.
“At the job interview were me, Ola from the Product Design Team, and two other guests. The conversation was enjoyable, loose, and with a lot of laughs. At the end, one of them asked me if I like reading books. As chance would have it, I reached into my bag and pulled the book I was reading and they both said they had read it and approved of my taste. After a while. they said goodbye and left. I asked Ola who they were and she answered ‘That’s Tom and Piotr Karwatka, the founders of Divante’.”Stanley Świątkiewicz.
That lack of awareness might even have helped. The conversation went well, and Stanley was hired as a designer.
These were the very beginnings of the department, so he had to do many different things himself and learn fast. Today, just about two years after hiring Stanley, the Product Design Team at Divante has grown to 11 people.
The Product Designer’s role is increasingly important
Product Design is becoming more and more critical in a changing eCommerce landscape with growing customer awareness.
Neil Patel, one of the top 10 marketers in the world according to Forbes, says around 80% of all e-commerce businesses fail. Why? There are three common reasons why customers will leave you:
– Customers don’t know how to use your site
– Product value isn’t clear. Navigation is difficult
– All connect with product design.
Good design is a factor that impacts user opinion. It creates the right first impression. The study shows the website’s overall look and feel contributes 94% to the first impression. In just a fraction of a second, the front-end determines whether a user likes your site or not. This, in turn, determines whether the user continues to browse the website and makes a purchase or leaves with an empty basket.
What’s more, the percentage of mobile traffic over desktops has been growing for years. Many brands that sell online already have more than 80 percent mobile traffic. The problem is that the conversion on mobile is, on average, half as low as on the desktop. If there is more traffic from mobile devices in the online store, there is less conversion. Excellent front-end with top-notch product design, together with PWA, helps to solve this problem. That’s why Vue Storefront is the fastest-growing Open Source PWA front-end in the world.
More and more clients understand the critical role of product design. As customer attitudes change, Divante’s company position is developing to cover the importance of design.
“We used to be a strictly technological company, where the clients come and we make software for them. At this point, we are an expert and advisor. We work with the client on what the best solution will look like and only then do we deliver it to him. It is an entirely different mindset when it comes to customer care, which customers appreciate very much.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
Good product design can also be a unique selling point for the company. Technological matters are often complicated. You talk to your client about things he usually doesn’t understand. It’s easier to show your client something at the start then talk about it. And if you can show them something outstanding, it helps even more. It makes the conversation much more comfortable.
“Sviatlana made a brilliant website design for Estee Lauder. She completely overhauled their website. Making such changes with big, global brands is not apparent but seeing the design makes it less of an overwhelming idea. In our department, it is much easier to build a customer relationship. There hasn’t been a client who would leave the meeting with us and was dissatisfied.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
“Bixby: take me to Silicon Valley”
Stanley Świątkiewicz has been working at Divante for over two years now. He’s already taken part in exciting projects for global brands like Bosch and Coca Cola. Soon after joining Divnate, he also joined the Vue Storefront team.
“When I joined Divante, Vue Storefront was already built but I remember that it didn’t look good. I managed to convince the team to rebrand, so I made a new Visual Identity, and worked with the marketing team on creating a landing page and other promotional materials. Sviatlana and I worked on a demo that emphasized the advantages of PWA, we did a series of experiments and checked what can work in mobile shopping. Once we had the proven solutions, we started designing the demo. Sviatlana did a great job making sure that each component was consistent.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
Last year he was involved in the concept of a voice solution for Samsung Bixby’s assistant. The initial idea is based on the combination of Bixby’s capabilities, Vue Storefront (an eCommerce PWA), and any eCommerce backend. With this combination, Bixby users can begin the purchase path with a simple voice command.
So whenever you have Bixby next to you, you can enter the purchase path by asking your voice assistant. The idea was so good that Samsung invited its creators to the Samsung Developers Conference 2019 held in Silicon Valley.
“I prepared the dopest design I ever had. Everything was top notch. I had a whole scenario of what I was going to do. I jumped on the call with Samsung headquarters with tremendous enthusiasm. I presented them with everything we had. And then there was silence before someone said: ‘What is that? We wanted a fully working project, guys’.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
There was only one small problem… the event was in two weeks. Stanley saw no chance of reaching the goal but, fortunately, his teammate Sebastian kept pushing the project and they finally managed to deliver it. It turned out that Samsung has a Capsule, a thing where you can develop a fully working project in just one week. This is what they did and, finally, Stanley delivered a presentation in San Jose, California.
“My dream project? The more complex the problem is, the more interesting.”
Some young people are excited by the chance to work with big, global brands. It looks beautiful in the portfolio but the work itself is often not so attractive. Working for a big company often means doing boring things.
In Divante, it’s different. You have a pretty big company that does projects for much bigger companies. But those projects are exciting and each team member has real influence on the end result. And the clients see the individuals who are helping improve their brands. When Stanley was working on the concept for Happy Socks, the representative of this company sent him a whole carton of socks from the company because “you can’t design our website without our socks on your feet.”
Stanley is most interested in big, complicated projects. It’s not about the brand but about something where there is a huge problem to solve.
“The more complex the problem is, the more interesting it is. I’d rather put together a mega-complex concept for a brand nobody knows than standard eCommerce for Adidas.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
When asked for an explanation, he told me a fitting example. Imagine an umbrella manufacturer. They have a problem that when it rains, there’s a lot of traffic on their shop’s website. In different countries, they sell different umbrellas, e.g., in Poland, black umbrellas are most popular. The Product Design team’s task is to solve this problem to adapt the shop to the customer’s needs and give them what they need when they need it. For example, when it rains in Poland, black umbrellas appear on the front page for local visitors so the customer enters the shop and immediately has what he needs. Conversion increases and the customer gets his business done faster.
“In the future, I would like to move away from design to an even greater understanding of the client and inventing things and concepts. I’m so excited about complicated projects that I would like to come to such a level of complexity that you don’t talk about design but about solutions to specific problems. We already have some of these projects and I like them very much.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
Is Product Design the right career path? It has a lot to offer to creative types
IT companies are still thought of by many creative people as rigid corporations. The example of Divante shows that it doesn’t have to be like this. What is even more critical is that the Product Design team is a place for creators.
“More and more designers are switching from branding and architecture to product design. It is due to the high demand in the IT industry. If you are an excellent product designer, you have no problem finding a job. There are a lot of well-paid job offers, and these are often exciting positions. I think not everyone is aware of that.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
Creating interactive pages is a good example. Let’s take a look at what Apple does on its websites. We have subtitles, videos, animations, and photos. Creating modern websites is like making movies. It’s an interactive story. This approach gives us enormous scope for creative action, and making a website is an attempt to tell the story of a given brand.
“Like many UX Designers, I don’t know how to draw well. Recently, I decided to change that. I signed up for a drawing course, and just at the beginning, the teacher told me one significant thing: The final drawing is a medium. The most important thing is the story behind the drawing and the message you want to convey. You always have to ask yourself what story a given picture is supposed to tell. The same is right with photography, film, and websites. The most important thing is what you want to convey to the viewer. You then work out how you do it.”Stanley Świątkiewicz
Published May 13, 2020