Redesigning the web experience for Cleveland's craft recording space.


As the founder of Bad Racket, I was responsible for much more than its website, yet I had a v1 of before I had recorded a single band.

The fifth major redesign placed content produced by the studio at the forefront, enabling local music fans to preview and purchase albums and videos.

  • Client
  • Bad Racket Recording Studio
  • Roles
  • UX / UI design
  • Content strategy
  • Development


Evaluate previous versions

Understand user needs

Set redesign goals

Determine success criteria


Wireframe structure

Wireframe UX patterns

Design visual aesthetic alongside real content

Fine tune interactions


Implement vision in code

Address unforeseen design challenges

Tune for performance


Monitor success metrics

Document performance for next iteration cycle


Evaluating previous versions

Every redesign begins with a series of questions: Why? Is the current version underperforming? In what ways? What should be done to improve it?

Version 1 (2009)

The color palette and visual aesthetic are established, but structure, usability, and performance are lacking.

Version 4 (2012)

Hierarchy and layout are improved, but the site is still text-heavy and performs poorly on mobile devices.


Setting redesign goals

By 2013, Bad Racket had produced more than thirty music videos and dozens of albums, and we wanted to show them off.

Our aim with the new site was to focus on content in order to foster community and increase interactivity with the brand.

  • Foster community
  • Social login
  • Guest posts
  • Band interviews
  • Local show listings
  • Increase interactivity
  • Persistent music player
  • Integrated payments
  • Strong mobile experience


Wireframing UX

Initial wireframes took a page from Spotify by putting content consumption front and center.

Bad Racket needed a vastly superior mobile experience compared to previous versions of the site, so this was a focus early on.

Visual design

Finding the visual style

With wireframes as a guideline, visual styles are defined and microinterations are tweaked. In a content-heavy design such as this, it's important to develop visuals alongside real content.

Interviews were accompanied by custom illustrations done by the talented Andrew Kuhar.

Facebook integration identified loyal fans for outreach and generated social momentum around events hosted by Bad Racket.

Stripe integration enabled fans to purchase albums directly from Bad Racket and encouraged bands to distribute their music through Bad Racket.


Key results

The redesigned was faster, content forward, and engaging.

Facebook login plus Mixpanel allowed for a tailored experience and timely followup via drip email.

Stripe integration helped fans support local bands.

Attendance at Bad Racket's hosted shows grew, as did the post-show social media engagement.

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