Usability TestingDesign Thinking WorkshopWebsite DesignDevelopmentContent Strategy

Turning a Small Side Project into a Global Success


Increased blog traffic +72% from 2015 to 2016


Increased time on site +23% from 2015 to 2016


Increased new product revenue

in annual new customer revenue (the number is so big we can’t publish it)
Success Ladder Resultfunctionaldelightful

A Blog Built for Developers, by Developers

When GoDaddy originally hired Drawbackwards to help with a special side project, they never expected it would become a global, revenue-generating machine. At first, they called on our team to design the GoDaddy Garage, an experimental blog geared toward WordPress developers.

In addition to giving the Garage an edgy design to appeal more to developers and designers, Drawbackwards created a web app called the Hot 100, which highlighted the top 100 WordPress plugins and themes used by GoDaddy customers at any given time. This app was not only a fun, interactive feature that added delight to the blog, but it also reinforced GoDaddy’s credibility as a WordPress thought leader.

What started out as an experiment turned into a major source of new customer acquisition. Drawbackwards has been the partner who helped plan, design, and develop along this journey, which has driven significant new revenue.

A Successful Expansion and Rebrand that Started with Research

After seeing the success of GoDaddy Garage, the company decided to expand it from a small R&D project for developers into a full-fledged, international blog for all of their customers. At the same time, GoDaddy was in the process of rebranding. These changes called for a redesign of GoDaddy Garage.

GoDaddy’s internal team was planning to manage UX design, but after seeing the fresh ideas and clarity we provided during the initial project, they knew they wanted Drawbackwards to be involved. We suggested beginning with usability testing and competitive research to identify new ideas for improvement.

This research revealed several invaluable insights, such as a better way to promote related GoDaddy products, services, and content within each article. Before, the company had been trying to accomplish this through navigation. However, through Drawbackwards’ moderated usability testing (which is based on users completing tasks and thinking aloud), participants naturally revealed that a more effective solution would be contextual cross-promotion within each article.

Uniting Stakeholders Through Design Thinking Workshops and Collaboration

The organic insights uncovered during usability and competitive research directly informed the next steps of our partnership with GoDaddy: strategy, UX design, and development.

Drawbackwards facilitated a design thinking workshop with the GoDaddy team to sketch ideas for the new blog and get stakeholders involved early in the process. Once we helped craft the overall direction, we paired with GoDaddy’s in-house designers to review the wireframes they created and provide feedback. By joining forces, we helped them make UX design improvements that directly impacted GoDaddy’s objectives, including increasing blog traffic by 72% and time on site by 23% in one year.

Going Global, While Keeping Maintenance Minimal

The GoDaddy Garage redesign involved improving the experience for readers and its developers. Using Drawbackwards’ WordPress Forward Framework, we collaborated with GoDaddy to configure the backend so it could accommodate complex requirements, while making maintenance easier.

For example, the new blog was going to be translated into different languages, which would create a maintenance nightmare if each language install needed to be updated separately. To solve this problem and save time, Drawbackwards built one unified code base so GoDaddy could push updates out to each install at once.

By working in tandem throughout the research, strategy, UX design, and development process, Drawbackwards helped GoDaddy improve the blog experience for everyone and turned a little content experiment into a huge global success.