Third & GroveThird & Grove
Mar 10, 2021 - Justin Emond

Lifting the Veil behind the Acquia Redesign. 

How did we do it?


When we discovered that we had won the project to redesign, I was filled with a delightful mix of two rather distinct emotions. The first was immense excitement at the prospect of reimagining the vision for a highly successful B2B technology startup that has supported us as an agency partner since our founding. Acquia, Drupal, and Dries Buytaert (the founder of both) have had an out-sized impact on my professional life. To be able to support this mission was an honor.

acquia team

The second emotion I felt was a deep sense of terror. With all eyes in the ecosystem watching, with Acquia’s executive leadership just a text message away, this was the one project that we couldn’t fuck up.

Here’s a bit of a behind-the-scenes look at what led to this new design. (For success metrics on this redesign, take a look at our redesign case study.)

Over the last 20 months, through the acquisition of three companies, Acquia has transformed itself from a platform-as-a-service cloud to a complete digital experience platform company. And Acquia itself was also acquired by leading high-tech private equity firm Vista Equity Partners. With the support of ambitious capital, the market validation by stunning progress in Gartner’s DXP Magic Quadrant in just 18 months, and the new product marketing strategy, the stage was set to reimagine

The redesign started with our strategic discovery process, including stakeholder and customer interviews, a competitive analysis, personas, user journey mapping, intake and homework, an analytics audit, and an SEO audit. It became immediately apparent that a variety of audience groups are crucial to Acquia’s success: Prospective customers, existing customers, partners, employees, potential employees, press, analysts, and investors.

But as we dug deeper into our analysis and research, it also became clear that each of these groups had the same three needs:

  1. To trust Acquia as a brand
  2. To feel understood
  3. To be supported

The next major insight was that the three most crucial pillars of Acquia — products, community, and customer support — aligned with those universal core needs. All great creative output starts with great strategic discovery input, and this project was no different. These three pillars became the mantra of the creative process, the foundation on which we built a beautiful new digital experience for the leading digital experience platform company.

To showcase Acquia’s cutting-edge products, we designed an x-ray feature into the experience that allows any site visitor to look under the hood of the particular page that they are on and learn more about the products that power that page.

To demonstrate the value of Acquia’s community, we led with customer success stories and social proof. It’s always easy to do when your client has many happy customers as Acquia does.

And for customer service, we designed the user experience to offer frictionless guided forms.  

The resulting user experience and interface is an open, intuitive design for the open digital experience platform leader.