Portfolio: Department of Commerce Trade.com Website

CLIENT // U.S. Department of Commerce — International Trade Administration (ITA)


SOLUTION // Trade.gov & Export.gov Website Discovery & Strategy



  • Led a team of 10 technology analysts, user experience (UX) designers, information architects, and market researchers in the discovery of Trade.com and Export.com, which are the main channels that connect ITA to their customers and partners
  • Presented research findings and recommendations to the Deputy Undersecretary of Commerce, Kenneth E. Hyatt


Our team developed a comprehensive discovery plan that utilized Human-Centered Design to learn about their customers and ITA staff, where we wanted to assess their current use of the ITA sites, their goals and unmet needs, and ideas for improvement.

First, we utilized two methods to gage the opinions of ITA staff, customers, and partners on both websites: an online survey and in-person and over-the-phone interviews. The online surveys provided substantial quantitative and qualitative feedback due to the wide distribution and ease of taking the online survey, with a total of 150+ ITA employees, 20 customers, and 5 partners completing the survey.

We conducted interviews with 20+ internal ITA stakeholders who represented different offices and sectors, as well as 20+ ITA customers from a diverse range of businesses and trade associations. These interviews offered a deeper level of insight into users’ needs because the casual nature of the conversations enabled more meaningful responses, as well as the freedom to pursue topics in greater detail.

Next, we analyzed the website analytics for six months worth of website data — for both trade.gov and export.gov — to gain knowledge on their traffic sources, referrals, user type, device usage, user location, path analysis, content analysis, site performance, and page analysis.

Once we completed the initial research, we began to compile and review all of the data in order to develop a comprehensive strategy around customer segments, content, engagement, information architecture.

From this strategy, our design team began work on style tiles and color palettes, and then created multiple user experience (UX) wireframes. We presented our creative styles and experience design options to the Digital Council, as well as a few customers and partners, and received constructive feedback.

We utilized this feedback to narrow our focus to one creative style and one user experience design, where our design team worked diligently on a visual design for the new Trade.gov that successfully demonstrated the giant leap forward in developing the online capabilities to better connect and serve ITA’s staff, customers, and partners across platforms.

Award-Winning Design Exec / Design@ActivisionBlizzard / Creative Technologist / Entrepreneur / Darden MBA / Author & Speaker / DSRUPTR.com