If you could travel back in time, where would you go?
Zeit is the first and only company to commodotize and make time travel tourism available to all. Zeit offers a total of 289 trip destinations world-wide, from prehistoric times through today. Zeit did not have a website and needed one for users to book trips through. They also needed branding and a logo created from scratch.
Create a logo that is both modern, historical, & alludes to the past
Determine the overall look and direction of Zeit’s branding
Design a site that allows users to browse through different trip packages
Because Zeit is a unique product with no direct competition, conducting research for this project seemed tricky at first. If Zeit were to be the first company to commoditize time travel, it’s possible they could be a major disrupter and game-changer in the travel & entertainment industries.
Still, if I had to compare Zeit to any other product, travel booking websites seemed the most similar to what Zeit offered. People using Zeit’s product would still need to plan for their trips and book them through Zeit’s website; which doesn’t seem all that different than planning a regular vacation. With this reasoning in mind, I planned my research around understanding the travel industry and the travelers themselves.
In order to learn more about Zeit’s users, the travel industry, and Zeit’s competitors, I created and did a number of things to guide research efforts, including:
What I Learned
Since Zeit is an agency that specializes in time travel, it was important to create a logo that felt both modern and historical at the same time. I thought it would be neat to include a more old-fashioned way of keeping track of time within the logo, and explored options such as grandfather clocks, obelisks, hourglasses, and sundials. Eventually, I settled on a sundial design which seemed iconic and fun.
After the logo design was complete, it was time to determine how Zeit’s brand would look and feel. One of the frustrations that our user persona George had was coming across untrustworthy sites when booking travel accommodations, so it was important that Zeit’s branding came across as professional and trustworthy.
The overall aesthetic for Zeit’s brand would play a huge rule in communicating trustworthiness; so for Zeit’s branding, I opted to try to create an aesthetic that looked and felt simple, professional, classic, modern, and subdued.
In order to get a rough idea of how things would be laid out, I decided to start sketching and exploring all of the different ideas I had for some of the screens!
After I completed the sketches, it was time to start wire-framing, and get a bit more specific with how different elements would work and be defined on each page.
Based on my user research and what I gleaned in user interviews, photographs and videos were really important when trying to decide where to travel to. Especially if the user has never visited a place before (and the photographs and videos they find online are all they have to go off of) - which would absolutely be the case for Zeit. With that in mind, I decided to be very liberal with the use of photography and imagery in my wireframes, using light grays and dark navy to denote where photos and videos would be.
To help build trust (as untrustworthy travel websites are one of the things George finds frustrating), I also included testimonials, user reviews, and user ratings.
After creating the style tile, sketching, and wireframing, it was time to incorporate Zeit’s branding to all of the different UI elements on the site.
This project really helped me learn how to developing a brand’s identity and build a website from scratch. I also learned the process of deeply understanding people through persona creation, interviews, and user testing.
• Build out additional screens for Zeit’s website
• Continue to test and iterate