Motor City Brewing Works
Capturing the true spirit of Detroit in all its guts, glory and grunge, our relaunch of the Motor City Brewing Works (MCBW) website achieves the exceptional level of quality found in MCBW’s hand-crafted beers.
Motor City Brewing Works (MCBW) is the second oldest craft brewery in Michigan. MCBW’s new site remains true to the brand while making it easier for customers to see what’s currently brewing, download seasonal menus and learn about upcoming events, like art shows, bike rides and tastings.
As avid craft beer brewers, Mightybytes was excited to take on a brewery project. From a design standpoint, we wanted the website experience to mirror the actual experience of visiting the brewery in Detroit, complete with gleaming wood floors, urban greenery and gears that are reminiscent of Detroit’s roots as an industrial city.
Here is the approach that we took to designing the MCBW website:
- We started out with a site visit, where we sampled MCBW’s hand crafted beers and put ourselves in the perspective of a new customer, to begin to understand the flavor of their brand.
- We read all guest reviews to gain a better understanding of MCBW’s customer experience.
- Photographs of MCBW’s neighborhood and the bar itself helped inspire our visual design.
- We created a mood board to define the overall look and feel of the site.
- We devised a new visual approach that made the MCBW brand more approachable and memorable while subtly incorporating MCBW’s original branding, which was difficult to read, into the site design.
All of these elements give the new design of the site an authentic and hand-crafted look and feel, showcasing MCBW’s latest products and telling the brewery’s story simply and effectively.
When devising a development approach for the Motor City Brewing Works site, Mightybytes considered ease of use, both for brewery staff who need to quickly update their product information to include seasonal brews, and for MCBW’s customers who might be checking out the brewery’s website on a mobile phone from the comfort of MCBW’s Taproom, or looking for a convenient place to buy an MCBW brew near their home.
Here are some of the tools that we used and the features that we built during the development of the MCBW website:
- The site is built using the ExpressionEngine 2.0 content management system, which makes it a easy for MCBW staff members to get the word out about new brews, highlight upcoming events, showcase new vendors and blog for the first time.
- Our web development team seamlessly integrated Google Maps into the site with an Expression Engine add-on, helping customers discover Motor City Brewing Works beer at local retailers and bars by typing in their zip.
- Our design team created custom icons for Google Maps, integrating MCBW into the new, convenient Find Our Beer feature.
- Mightybytes employed responsive design for MCBW’s site ensuring that one of the brewery’s primary audiences—patrons sitting in their taproom trying to access the site from mobile devices—will have a great user experience.
By using customized open source solutions, Mightybytes ensured that MCBW staff will be able to communicate with their customers efficiently and effectively while telling their brand’s story.