Client
Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group
Year

2017

Elevating a trio of website experiences in short order

Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group owns and operates a collection of more than 50 restaurants across 23 states and Washington, D.C., with three contemporary, high-end, complementary restaurant concepts:  Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse, Sullivan’s Steakhouse, and Del Frisco’s Grille.

Since 1981, Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group has created restaurants that seek to enrich the senses through inspired settings, unparalleled service and simply delicious cuisine. The leadership team was driving to take Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group to new heights that maintain the company’s relevance in an ever-changing world of guest needs.

Client
Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group
Year

2017

Elevating a trio of website experiences in short order

Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group owns and operates a collection of more than 50 restaurants across 23 states and Washington, D.C., with three contemporary, high-end, complementary restaurant concepts:  Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse, Sullivan’s Steakhouse, and Del Frisco’s Grille.

Since 1981, Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group has created restaurants that seek to enrich the senses through inspired settings, unparalleled service and simply delicious cuisine. The leadership team was driving to take Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group to new heights that maintain the company’s relevance in an ever-changing world of guest needs.

Objectives
  • Increase online reservations
  • Elevate the online brand experience
  • Amplify brand and concept awareness
  • Capture each restaurant’s unique personality
  • Grow private dining and events bookings
  • Support global and local promotions

The Challenge

With restaurant concepts that continually improve and set new standards for excellent cuisine, attentive service and wonderful atmosphere, Del Frisco’s digital marketing assets had not followed pace to mirror the company’s strengths or support their desire for growth. Website designs were outdated, technology was disparate and user flows were cumbersome. Charged with launching three new websites, in three months, before our client’s holiday marketing campaign efforts, we had to be smart, efficient and concerted. We needed to quickly identify, diagnose and prioritize improvements with a highly collaborative and nimble environment.

The websites would need to elevate the company’s online brand experience, reduce friction within the website flow, deliver an enhanced customer experience, and address the company’s expanding market needs through a clean and responsive design.

Our three restaurant concepts each have a unique personality and it's important that the websites properly reflect each brand and provide the same great experience guests associate with dining in our restaurants.

Brandon Coleman IIIPresident of Del Frisco's Grille
Roles
  • Pitch Team
  • CX/UX Lead
  • Client/Partner Advisor
  • Strategist
  • Designer
Project Responsibilities
  • Sitemap
  • User Flows
  • Wireframe Prototypes
  • Web Guidelines
  • UI Design
  • Responsive Design

The Approach

I established myself as an effective leader by participating in every aspect of this project from winning the business, discovery, managing client and vendor relationships, heading UX/CX strategy and execution, creating design layouts, and ensuring on-time launches. We were the lead agency in charge of UX, design, and integration of a multitude of vendor relationships.

Discovery: Goals, Requirements & Current State

The first step was to get a better understanding of the current state by evaluating the design, content, structure and task flows of the websites through heuristic evaluations and website audits. I also participated in initial discovery meetings with key client stakeholders to define requirements, project goals and measurements for success. The findings would prove the need for an overhaul of content organization, site architecture and design.

Information Architecture

UX Documentation & Planning

After documenting the current state, identifying strategic areas for improvement, presenting and finding alignment with the client, the next step was to build the foundation for a shared design system. The goal was to have a consistent design experience that portrayed an elevated brand while leaving enough flexibility for each restaurant concept to have its own unique personality.

A Seamless Experience Across All Devices

These days, responsive design is a given. But in the current state, the websites presented separate experiences for desktop and mobile. Design and content were disjointed and caused an inconsistent brand presentation for customers. We endeavored to create an experience that retained key elements of content across all devices while considering what should be prioritized for user needs depending on what they were doing at that moment. On the backend, this would also improve the capability of our client’s marketing team to make updates via the CMS in one place to speed up their workflow and consistency.

One Company, Three Restaurants

We built a consistent design system as the framework for design and development in order to save time and create a familiar user experience across all three sites.

Shared Design System

The client desired a cohesive digital design that captured the essence of each restaurant while laddering back up to the corporate vision. I began with the thought in mind to create shared page templates and components to keep consistent design patterns that would be recognizable through all three websites. This also helped speed up the production time, while retaining the flexibility to give each restaurant concept its own unique brand personality.

Location, Location, Location – Yext Listings and Local Pages Custom API

We identified a need to improve the display of information for each individual restaurant location. Previously, users were presented with a cumbersome series of modal window interactions to access important information like directions, hours, menus and events. After talking with store managers, we also uncovered the need for easier access and more flexibility to discuss their location’s unique attributes and selling points. We worked with Yext to design a custom API build that leveraged the platform’s strength in SEO while harmoniously fitting it within the brand style.

Reservations: Custom Open Table Integration

With online reservations as a key driver of guest visits and sales, it was essential to update the design and flow make it easier for users. The reservation call-to-action was given high priority with a button that had top placement across all devices. We also included a reservation form component at the bottom of pages, that is pre-filled based on time of day relevance, to encourage more reservations. I worked with our Open Table contact to ensure compliance and obtain the necessary elements to create a custom branded experience that fits seamlessly into the site flow.

Reservations: Custom Open Table Integration

With online reservations as a key driver of guest visits and sales, it was essential to update the design and flow make it easier for users. The reservation call-to-action was given high priority with a button that had top placement across all devices. We also included a reservation form component at the bottom of pages, that is pre-filled based on time of day relevance, to encourage more reservations. I worked with our Open Table contact to ensure compliance and obtain the necessary elements to create a custom branded experience that fits seamlessly into the site flow.

Project Team
  • Rachel DeFriend
  • Asa Potter
  • Maggie Lucas
  • Megan Davis