Tropique Australia

Project Background

Tropique is a boutique cushion manufacturer based in Sydney, Australia. Tropique’s online store was receiving high volumes of traffic, however they were converting only a small portion of sales. Tropqiue understood they needed to do something about their website but was not sure where to start or how to approach the website redesign.

Their goals — increase time spent on their site, use of the site to entice an in-store visit and increase sales of the online store.

Project Duration

5 Weeks

My Role

Market Research
Competitor Analysis
Website Design and Build


Self Directed as Human Centred Designer.

First and foremost, we needed to understand why their current website wasn't working, and what's most important to their target audience when browsing for and purchasing cushions.

To do so, I broke the project up into two distinct phases:

Understanding the Audience - through user research, market research, and competitive analysis. Then define what we learn into insights (our KPI’s) for use as actionable design criteria.

Developing the Solution - using lean design techniques, develop solutions to test with target users, then learn & improve to land on a final outcome.

The Old Site

It was clear with the old website and Tropique's large range of 200+ cushions, the content on their website was added to overtime and now cluttered and congested, diluting their core message.


Tropique's old website on desktop and mobile.

There's more than one way to sk.. find a cushion.

For this reason, I needed to understand the right terminology to use and how the information should be laid out to ensure all information including any single cushion would be easy to find. 

This is the 'All Cushions' Page.

This is the cushion's detail view. 

So, who better to tell us how to do it than Tropique's target audience.

Understanding the Audience.

Through a research plan, I set objectives of what we needed to understand and target users whom I’d gain this insight from. A few sample objectives listed below:

  1. Understand the end to end buying process of a cushion and the role of the website

  2. Card sorting exercises to see how people organise information

  3. Understand how much consideration do users given to in-store experience vs online

I interviewed & tested Tropique's old website on 7 women of Tropique’s target audience, who had never heard of Tropique before. This ensure's no bias.

From data to design criteria.

Taking every single comment from each interview, and sticking them on a wall (affinity mapping) I then drew key themes from the sum of all data - hence revealing our 5 key insights. These insights formed Tropique's persona (the representation of our research) and would now serve as our design criteria. Our problem is now well defined as actionable design criteria in the form of the needs, likes, dislikes characteristics and scenarios of our persona. 

Sample comments

“looking at the homepage, it's hard to tell what they do at a glance - do they do outdoor furniture or decks? You don’t realise it’s cushions unless you click through to the store”

“oh, I didn’t know they were a local boutique business, that changes everything!”


Developing the solution

Working within Tropiques budget, there were 'must have' features, and 'nice to haves'. To determine what was most important, we did a feature prioritisation on how well each feature met Tropiques design criteria.

Of the 25 features, we selected the top 3 for the MVP, developed a low fidelity prototype, and put it in front of new Target Tropique users. 

Through creating low fidelity sketches and wireframes, we created a prototype for feedback. 60% of users browsed on Mobile, so I used mobile for testing.

Design backed by Rationale

The response was positive! Findings and final tweaks from testing with a new group of target users found:

  • users loved the premium feel and had an entirely different, positive experience compared to the old site
  • users we’re far more likely to reach their goals when using the website

We received great feedback, some we hadn't anticipated - all feedback informing the site's design. 


The Results. 

The site is far easier for staff to maintain saving time and money on updating it

People are achieving tasks and finding single cushions far quicker than comparable on the old site.

Tropique hit 80% of their monthly sales average in the first 10 days of the site's launch! And the site's being going great ever since.


Higher sales in the first month


Time spent browsing the site


Sales doubled online

Words of Tropique


I wanted to let you know what a great job you did on our website migration and how impressed I am with the UX . 

As you know I was a little unsure about making the change, however you made it so easy for me to decide – the UX process and experience with developing a site on customer experience as opposed to business owner knowledge was exactly what we needed – the site looks great,  simple to manage and our customers are sending us positive feedback. 

In addition, I appreciate the consultative approach you took to assessing our needs and how we wanted our site reflected  – you listened & interpreted exactly the Tropique vibe. 

Thank you so much! 

Rebecca Bickersatff
Creative Director | Owner

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