How a website redesign helped Shipwell unlock greater digital potential

How a website redesign helped Shipwell unlock greater digital potential

Learn why transportation management company Shipwell switched to Webflow to reduce developer dependency and reimagine the end-to-end customer experience.

How a website redesign helped Shipwell unlock greater digital potential

Learn why transportation management company Shipwell switched to Webflow to reduce developer dependency and reimagine the end-to-end customer experience.

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Written by
Leah Retta
Leah Retta
Senior Content Marketing Manager
Leah Retta
Leah Retta

In 2016, fellow MIT graduates Greg Price and Jason Traff embarked on a mission to evolve how supply chains work to better match the needs of the changing industry.

The outcome is their Austin-based company Shipwell, which is committed to empowering companies to efficiently scale their supply chain — no matter their size, stage, or industry.

The company’s ethos can be boiled down to one simple statement: making shipping better. It’s this very objective that has the company’s tiny-but-mighty marketing team laser focused on leveling up how they connect with their customers.

We recently caught up with their CMO, Karen Sage, to hear more about her vision for her marketing team and why an end-to-end website overhaul was a critical next step for the company. Read on to learn why she was ready to move on from WordPress, how her team members collaborated with Webflow Enterprise Partner Veza Digital to make their vision a reality, and what’s in store for the future at Shipwell.

A vested interest in building websites marketing teams can actually use

Karen Sage knows a thing or two — or three — about the pains that come with a marketing website her teams can’t regularly use or update. In her career, she’s led marketing teams where someone has developed a nearly impossible-to-use website, and this was once again the case with Shipwell’s previous website. 

“It was extremely difficult for my marketers to do anything beyond tiny changes, and attempting to would completely break our WordPress website that was built with custom templates and plugins.”

— Karen Sage, CMO at Shipwell

This posed an even greater issue as site pages became outdated because updating them meant being beholden to a developer or outside consultant. Sarah Slaughter, Sr. Manager, Creative & Brand at Shipwell, emphasized some of the challenges she personally was feeling with the existing website. “Our external developers built custom-templated experiences that they believed would make it easier for the marketing team to edit, but in reality, it was the opposite. We were locked into these very formulaic templates that only let us edit one or two things, but nothing more,” she lamented.

Identifying additional key pains with their existing website

Karen shared that one of the value points Shipwell is able to offer is an excellent user experience in their tool. “That’s why having a clunky website — one that was very templated and lacked interactivity — was creating a disjointed brand and user experience,” she explained.

As Karen, Sarah, and their wider marketing team began evaluating how they could solve for this, enable more marketing autonomy, and improve the overall customer experience, they began summarizing exactly what wasn’t working with their current website — from initial visit to post-sale and ongoing lifecycle activities.

They pinpointed a few core challenges when it came to website development and management:

  • The development cycle was painfully slow and expensive: Moving a button over just a few pixels could cost them upwards of $600 and 2+ business days with outside web developers.
  • Their website wasn’t interactive: As the team explored building engaging customer experiences, such as interactive calculators or animations, development was a major blocker.
  • The impact of content optimization fell short: Without an easy-to-use, easy-to-navigate website that was optimized to visitors’ needs, optimizations to content had minimal impact.

In addition to functionality and issues with development, the team — as well as their investors — had major concerns about continuing to use WordPress, due to the known security issues that come with the number of plugins needed to build their website with custom templates.

Waving goodbye to painful and costly development cycles

Karen quickly prioritized the need to not only move off WordPress, but to completely reimagine their web presence. However, with limited in-house support, she knew working with a partner who could bring website expertise to this project was necessary. She began interviewing numerous agencies and left frustrated as many failed to truly understand her priorities and pain, often trying to push her back toward a WordPress site, which was a non-starter.

Enter Veza Digital: a Webflow Enterprise Partner and full-scale growth marketing agency that not only specializes in WordPress-to-Webflow migrations, but was acutely aware and empathetic of the pains the Shipwell marketing team was facing. 

“We knew Karen was a high-intent user when it came to replatforming, and we also wanted to help set Shipwell apart from competitors in their industry, which meant creating a very uniquely designed and modern website built for the future.”

— Jamal Haymour, Director of Partnerships at Veza Digital

Jamal and his team wanted to set the Shipwell team up for long-term success and scale, and therefore walked them through how they could start using Webflow’s CMS as much as possible, bringing more control into marketers’ hands. Additionally, they showed them that the Veza team could still develop some custom site experiences, animations, and interactions to ensure Karen’s team’s exact vision was properly executed.

Finally feeling heard and understood, Karen and team decided migrating to Webflow and partnering with Veza Digital was the best path forward and proceeded with confidence.

Collaboration was a key driver for Shipwell’s website redesign success

Ready to roll up their sleeves and get to work, the teams at Veza Digital and Shipwell aligned on key roles and responsibilities. Karen’s in-house team would handle copywriting and raw product assets, while Veza focused on design, migration, and development - as well as ensuring new experiences were optimized for conversion.

Through the redesign process, Veza Digital managed to elevate Shipwell's brand image. Using Figma, Veza created visually compelling web pages aligned with Shipwell's brand guideline. With the custom-made design, Veza managed to extract the essence of Shipwell’s brand. The result was an enhanced website design, improved with custom motion graphics that set a new standard for the transportation management industry. 

After getting through the arduous process of cleaning up the WordPress site content the Veza team imported into Webflow, they were finally able to hit the ground running in December 2023. 

Throughout the migration and redesign process, the two teams remained highly collaborative and in lockstep, defining approval workflows, staying connected on Slack, conducting weekly status calls and written updates, and leaving the door open to ad-hoc calls that could unblock the Veza team as needed.

A partnership that sets Shipwell up for long-term success

All-in-all, the Shipwell team created new copy for 25 unique pages, and the Veza team migrated over 1500+ pages and built 20 net new pages by project completion. They also were able to preserve Shipwell’s existing brand by bringing the company’s beloved mascot, Swifty, to life on the site using custom animations. “This was an important undertaking because while yes, Shipwell is a corporation in the logistics space, it still has a brand we wanted to ensure remained intact amongst all of the change,” Jamal explained.

As key partners for the Shipwell team, their support didn’t stop with building pages, custom animations, and interactions. They continue to be critical partners when it comes to SEO optimizations and bugs following the new site launch. Additionally, because enabling greater marketing autonomy was a core catalyst for moving to Webflow, Veza’s team is now providing Shipwell’s marketing team with ongoing support. 

This includes training on-site management and updates, as well as creating recordings for long-term reference. Additionally, Veza provides support to Shipwell for net-new requests, graphic design to ensure new designs align with the current look and feel, and overall site enhancements.

Building a truly powerful website unlocked greater digital potential and shifted company culture

The marketing team at Shipwell was able to do so much more than redesign their website. They completely reimagined what their website could look like, how it could function, and what it could support — transforming it into a true lever for leveling up the customer experience.

By project completion, the Shipwell team had:

  • Redesigned the user interface to provide a sleek, modern experience
  • Updated their navigation menu to ensure finding what users need is effortless
  • Organized their digital resources, making it simpler than ever to delve into the details of Shipwell's solutions
  • Created more straightforward ways for users to connect with their team

Additionally, the Shipwell team was able to bring dream projects, like their ROI calculator and partner portal, to life with support from the Veza team. Now, the marketing team can track site performance using analytics and heatmaps to better understand what’s resonating with their audience — something they were only previously able to achieve to an extent using their social channels.

As an added bonus, not only was Shipwell’s marketing team able to deliver on consumer and business needs, but they were able to shift their internal company culture.

“Our greater Shipwell team was really energized by having a high-quality website, which in turn has boosted team morale and internal company sentiment."

— Karen Sage, CMO at Shipwell

What’s in store for the future at Shipwell

While it’s easy to track the visual upgrade the Shipwell team accomplished, the biggest impact driver in this website overhaul was speed. “As we are at a company stage where we are growing fast, time is of the essence,” Sarah explains. “We’re excited about our ability to move quickly with Webflow, ship new campaigns in a fraction of the time, and just build more digital experiences that resonate with our target audience.”

Looking ahead, the team is excited to have a clear picture of key website metrics that can help them make data-driven decisions on content and site optimizations. Additionally, with their new website and modern look and feel, the team is excited to continue to expand on their web presence, continuously iterating upon the user journey to consistently deliver delightful experiences to their users.

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Loved by designers. Trusted by enterprises. Bring Webflow in-house at your company with advanced security, custom traffic scaling, guaranteed uptime, and much more.

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Last Updated
April 30, 2024