The Las Vegas-based United Aqua Group, a company comprised of over 230 residential pool builders, commercial pool builders, pool retailers and service professionals, asked us to rebuild their malfunctioning Aquatech website. This site is intended to exclusively promote their residential builders under the brand name Aquatech. United Aqua Group is primarily a B-to-B buying group that allows individual companies to buy, network and market themselves collectively. With this website, United Aqua Group is hoping to educate the public about pool building and capture consumer leads for their member builders. Since we know a little something about designing lead-generation websites, we were eager to dive right in.
Showcase the expertise
United Aqua Group consists of some of the pool industry’s most prestigious builders. One goal of our web design was to ensure that their expertise came across loud and clear. The old site included a section titled “Dirt to Dream” that illustrates the general steps involved in building a Gunite in-ground pool. It’s a feature that the client wanted to keep, but the images needed sprucing up. We freshened the images in each step, added steps that were missing and employed the same parallax technology so that visitors could watch a pool literally go from dirt lot to dream backyard as they scroll down. If this website tool doesn’t get you excited about building a pool, nothing will—except for maybe the gallery of beautiful backyards.
Website galleries that deliver wow
The original Aquatech website featured a large gallery of pool images (nearly 3000) that pulled pictures from the company’s internal database. Unfortunately, that database held tens of thousands of images. Having the website connect to it was creating very slow load times. Often, the gallery wouldn’t load at all—which was negatively affecting the user experience. It’s hard to claim that you build beautiful pools if you can’t even show them on your site. ACS Creative Services was tasked with designing a new website gallery that was faster and easier to use. We suggested a few solutions to immediately address the issues. First, to speed load times, we moved the images to the website’s own database—and we made it easy as pie to add new images. Though United Aqua Group gave up some automation (images have to be manually added now to the Aquatech website) the company made tremendous gains in user experience. Now potential pool owners can ogle dream backyards at lightning speed. We believe this is a profitable tradeoff.
Interactive Websites Reduce Bounce
Another key feature of the original website was a section that allowed visitors to “design” their own pool by filtering images according desired features and choosing their favorite yards from among the results. The selections were then automatically emailed to the visitor’s local Aquatech builder. This was a great idea for generating leads—unfortunately it didn’t work. Again, images were pulling from an external database making the whole process extremely slow, when it worked at all. Also, many of the leads would never get to the builders so they couldn’t respond. Visitors were left hanging, and that’s a customer service breakdown no company wants. ACS website design to the rescue. We created a small gallery of pools for each feature option and imported all the images into the website. By minimizing the number of pools being pulled by the filter, we allowed consumers to quickly design their dream pools. More importantly, the speed and ease of the tool is encouraging more leads, making the website design a huge success. The first lead came through within 24 hours of going live.
The final component of the original site we needed to debug was the builder locator. Initially, the locator worked through the use of an API that connected to the company’s CRM system and pulled the nearest builder when someone entered a zip code. Like with the images, this connected back to the company’s database and was not working. So we went old school. We created a database of companies right on the website and showed United Aqua Group how to manually enter each location. With over 100 locations, this took some time—but it was time well spent. The builder locator now works like a dream—a dream of lounging poolside in your beautiful new backyard. Check out this new site at myaquatechpool.com.