iA


Astar Minerals

by Shareef Ayyad. Average Reading Time: about a minute.

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Astar Minerals (previously known as Pan Pacific Aggregates) are an AIM listed natural resources investment company, but when this site was built they produced crushed aggregate materials for the construction sector, from a quarry in British Columbia, Canada.

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A qualitative audit revealed that the website content lacked an intuitive structure. Much of the content was only there to meet AIM Rule 26 regulations and provide limited information for shareholders. There was no useful information for their actual customers –  the construction companies looking to buy crushed rock.

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The new site structure introduced a Products section for customers to learn about the types of aggregates and make sales enquiries. A competitor analysis showed many aggregate companies highlight their environmental policies, so the Sustainability section was moved higher in priority to show Astar’s commitment to the environment, the surrounding community and the safety of their workforce.

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The new layout introduced more negative space to let the content breathe, while larger text sizes improved readability. Products were promoted on the home page for those users looking to buy, while stock prices were displayed for users involved in investment. On second tier pages, a horizontal sub-navigation was centred below the section title, acting as a sign post so users know where they are on the site, and where they can navigate to.

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A visual language was developed that draws inspiration from the company’s location, with the colours taken straight from the palette of the British Columbia landscape. Photo samples made sure to feature forests and mountain ranges to show that Astar is conscious of its responsibility towards the environment. The typography breaks from the common corporate look of many other AIM listed companies to deliver something softer and more approachable. The red and gold were used for links and highlight states to map user journeys by emphasising minor and major calls-to-action.

Note: This website has changed from its original form due to the company’s repositioning. A copy of the original site can be found here for the purposes of this case study.