The story of why award-winning design agency ThreeSixtyEight switched to Webflow from WordPress - an

OneilCapps2544 | 2022.02.17 08:01 | 조회 30
For Jeremy Beyt, Chief Strategy Officer and co-founder of ThreeSixtyEight, it was clear that there was an opportunity to evolve.
At the time, ThreeSixtyEight - a full-scale design agency based in Baton Rouge, LA - was a WordPress shop, utilizing an agile waterfall approach between strategy, design, and engineering to create websites for their clients.
Though the ThreeSixtyEight <> team found WordPress, the preeminent open-source web behemoth, to be generally well-suited for their needs, there were very clear limitations that increasingly couldn’t be ignored. “It had been a constant push and pull between engineering and design,” said Jeremy. “There is a constant tension of priorities, with designers striving for novel interactions, and developers striving for efficiency and scalability.”
According to Jeremy, it had been the handoff from design to engineering that has been the main pain point for the ThreeSixtyEight team. Subsequently, this would cause a litany of issues - designers building heavy sites without understanding the limitations of code, and engineers limiting designers’ capability to design - ultimately slowing down build times.
This became a major issue especially because the design landscape evolved. “Websites started to obtain additional style heavy,” said Jeremy. “All these design elements began to become more complex, and our work started falling behind.”
For Jeremy and the team at ThreeSixtyEight, it was clear that they needed an overhaul. Not just with what they were building on, but how they had been building and how their organization was structured.
But first, let’s take an even closer look at how the agency operated using WordPress.
Friction and inefficiencies
On paper, it was a natural fit for an agency like ThreeSixtyEight to utilize WordPress as their site builder of preference.
But according to Shelby Buquet, Interaction Designer at ThreeSixtyEight, building with WordPress caused friction between design and engineering. “As designers, our vision often wouldn’t come across in the way that people wanted in development. There is always a barrier between the role of designer and developer,” he said.
In short, designers would want to build the coolest, biggest, site - and developers would push back to be able to have efficient and streamlined code. “With the limitations of code, there was always this argument of ‘which way do we go?’” said Jeremy. “Nobody had a clear answer. There still isn’t a clear answer.”
As a result, neither design nor development was able to deliver an optimal product to the client, because the original design vision and that which was delivered often differed.
“There were often significant inefficiencies, both from the business perspective and from a production perspective,” said Jeremy. “It had been difficult to consistently deliver on the initial vision. It was a game of compromise.”
As ThreeSixtyEight tried to work through those challenges, web design was also evolving. Beautiful, innovative sites began proliferating on the market, and not only were they heavy with design, but the elements had been complex and the interactions were fast and flexible.
Web Design Agency in New York caused the design-to-development handoffs at ThreeSixtyEight to become more and more strained.
“I felt like I was banging my head against the wall,” said Jeremy. “How are other teams accomplishing this? Some have design-dev hybrids, but then, I started hearing about Webflow.”
Uncertainties and ambivalence
When Jeremy first looked at Webflow, it had been far from love at 1st sight.
“I looked at Webflow and admittedly dismissed it,” said Jeremy. “I thought it was just another small business product for people who aren’t striving to push the limits of web.”
Shelby felt ambivalent aswell. “I thought, oh, this is yet another among those drag and drop editors,” he said. On top of this, he couldn’t imagine it being possible to bring the energy of high-level development onto a visual platform.
For about a yether, Jeremy and the team ignored Webflow as a viable option. And then among Jeremy’s freelancing friends told him about his experience switching over to Webflow. “My friend was like, ‘Have you reviewed Webflow? You need to look at it. It’s all I take advantage of now,’” Jeremy said.
This piqued Jeremy’s interest, and that night, he went home and started watching all the videos in Webflow University <> . “I simply watched every one of them in a single night, binged it. I felt like I was looking at the future,” he said.
For Jeremy, Webflow’s ability to frictionlessly merge design and engineering, and build and iterate quickly were game-changers - and the antidote to much of ThreeSixtyEight’s problems. Plus, it empowered their clients to be able to create changes quickly and seamlessly.
Afterwards, Jeremy knew that Webflow was the direction that ThreeSixtyEight had a need to take. “I wanted to find the best Webflow designer that I possibly could find, and I came across Tim Ricks <> , who been in our city.” Jeremy and the ThreeSixtyEight team hired Tim immediately to explore the options with Webflow.
The turning point
Unlike the rest of the team at ThreeSixtyEight, Tim has only worked as a designer in Webflow. Though he’d dabbled with WordPress and other website builders, along with learning front-end development in school, he wasn’t in love with any of it.
He found Webflow via YouTube during his third year in college. “It only took one video of seeing Webflow’s CMS, and the way you can build out a complete database visually, to completely sell me,” Tim said. “I knew that this was the right platform to opt for.”
Fast forward a couple of yethers and Jeremy was asking Tim to join ThreeSixtyEight - a shop that has been completely WordPress - along with a team that, except for Jeremy, was skeptical at best.
It didn’t take long after his hiring that Tim was able to show the rest of the ThreeSixtyEight team the true value of Webflow. Around that time, the agency have been working on a site for Rakuten <> , a Jthepanese electronic commerce and online retailing company located in Tokyo - and they were running into roadblocks.
“For Rakuten, we had this highly custom interaction experience that we wanted to do,” remembers Jeremy. “At the time it had been being built on WordPress. We were iterating on this concept ad nauseum with our engineering and design teams, and we kept on offer and around it. We couldn’t obtain it right.”
Tim saw what the team was doing and told them, “I bet I can do this on Webflow.” Naturally, the group was naturally skeptical. They believed that, given the custom nature of the site, there had been no chance Webflow could work for their vision.
“The next morning, Tim came in and he had built the entire homepage on Webflow. Fully functional and perfect in a single night,” said Jeremy. “That has been the turning point.”
Impressed by the capability of Webflow, Jeremy and the team began integrating Webflow as their website builder over the entire agency.

A more efficient process
Because Webflow is indeed different from WordPress, the processes at ThreeSixtyEight had to shift aswell.
First, they added an interaction design <> part of their process. This allowed for everything from microinteractions to large-scale loading screens. Then, these were able to minimize the engineering phase - which was, historically, the longest procedure in a project. “Typically, for a six month task, 3 to 4 of those months were engineering and testing,” said Jeremy.
ThreeSixtyEight’s internal teams needed changes aswell. The design team pivoted from just visuals toward UI and front-end development, and every designer was trained on how best to build in Webflow. The development group, on the other hand, refocused from front-end to full-spectrum software development. This empowered the team to develop websites and platforms. Consequently, it helped upskill everyone who designed or built software at the business.
“Webflow helps our designers to believe more like developers and gives us the energy to understand how different elements of a niche site link up dynamically.”
“With Webflow and our new process, we compressed our timelines to less than half of what they were before,” said Jeremy. “It’s fast to create and iterate on, also it gave us a competitive edge on the market.”
From Shelby’s perspective, shifting to Webflow empowered him and his team to grow as designers. “It gave us a better understanding of the way the web actually works and how code works,” said Shelby. “Webflow helps our designers to think more like developers and gives us the power to know how different elements of a niche site link up dynamically.”

Some of the ThreeSixtyEight team. Thanks to ThreeSixtyEight
Webflow: The future of web site design
For ThreeSixtyEight, Webflow is their bet as the future of web design. “We don’t want to use Webflow as a WordPress replacement. We see it as a new category,” Jeremy said. “Our big vision is to be known because the place that built the last coolest website you saw - and Webflow gives us that.”
Some notable ThreeSixtyEight projects include:
•    Project Turntable <> takes interactions to another level and plays some very nice tunes.
•    The Legend of Santar can be an end-of-year project featuring Santa’s “not-so-jolly twin” that, via an interactive journey, tells you in the event that you were naughty or nice.
•    Viral Positivity was made during COVID-19 to collect donations for ThreeSixtyEight’s neighborhood.
•    ’ThreeSixtyEights Culture Manual may be the coolest culture site we’ve ever seen and the first we’ve experienced where we need to scroll around uncover the content.

ThreeSixtyEight’s work has spanned engagements from small mom and pop shops to large, multinational organizations. If you’re intrigued and desire to explore functioning with the ThreeSixtyEight team, head over to their Antigua Web Solutions Experts profile to attain out and get started.
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