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User Research, In-depth interviews, Workshopping

BMW UK Retailer Websites

In a tale of spot-on research, early prototyping and usability testing, Natural Interaction led the UX efforts to redesign BMW's UK retailer websites, delighting clients and customers and increasing conversion.


Lead generation


Unique visitiors


The Brief

The client wanted a ‘mobile first’ design that focused on customer experience and drove leads and conversions. But things were complicated; the customers of this well-known brand had many different needs, and while the 150 dealerships were spread across the country and required a localized approach, the content for the sites still had to be centrally managed.

EMO Unlimited, the agency who manages the sites, didn’t want to embark on such a major project without knowing how customers would actually interact with the finished product, risking a big time and cash spend with no guaranteed results at the end of it. So they brought in Natural Interaction as UX experts, and we immediately saw that a Lean UX approach was the way to go.

The Project: What, Why, When, Where, Who?

The success of this project would all come down to working out what the customer wanted. Who were they? What features would they use? Why did they need them? When and where would they access them? The first step was to find out more about the sales process and customer journey, so we dived in to a quick and dirty discovery phase, talking in-depth to sales people, service teams and management at local dealerships. One key issue that emerged was that customers were often overwhelmed by navigating the choice of car models on offer, with no effective way to sort the information.

We also needed to find out what the client expected from this new platform, so we workshopped with the marketing, product and finance teams to clarify their assumptions about how their customers would use the platform. But were those assumptions right? Now we had something to get our teeth into and test.

The Results

The final product, when it was launched, was sleek and user-friendly, because users had been part of the design process from the start.

The cars page, where customers need to sort complex information about a wide range of models, was a particular success. Our innovative card-game approach showcases different models and features clearly, allowing users to intuitively shuffle attributes depending on what they want from the car. Want to see what’s in reach of your wallet? Choose price range as a filter. Value performance over economy? View the fastest version of each model.

Stakeholders and customers love this feature because it allowed user to refine their choices before even booking a test drive, putting the customer in control and leading to an increase in conversion.

And that lead generation increase has been dramatic – 185% in the first 12 months. Unique visitors also grew by 222% during that period. Company stakeholders, dealers and the senior marketing team were thrilled with what we achieved through our approach of discovery and early prototype testing.

Looking to increase conversion on your website?

Kathryn Davies, our Head of User Research has written an Ebook outlining 21 ways you can increase Ecommerce Conversion.  

Download our free Ebook
Download our free Ebook - 21 Ways to Increase Ecommerce Conversion