leading backpack retailer
We were pretty psyched when the next major e-commerce brand + website for backpacks contacted us to work on their brand development + website design; a lifestyle brand to stand behind the name Backpacks.com. We equated this brand development project to our favorite coffee brand. When someone wants coffee, it is known that a Starbucks run is on the horizon, without thought of going anywhere else. Not that cute cafe around the corner. Not even that old donut shop, I mean, Dunkin’ Donuts. Sorry double D. When consumers think ‘backpack’ we wanted them to think Backpacks.com.
The company got started on the right foot, seeing they owned the domain backpacks.com. With this strong foundation, helium had a solid platform to position the concept, create the story, define the strategy, design the identity, set a tone for the photography + videography, coordinate the copy writing, and then design the website.
During our discovery meeting, a Backpacks.com team member told us his backpack was like a best friend. It traveled the world with him, carrying his most prized possessions. The necessities of life, the things he did not pack in a suitcase for fear of losing them. Hmmm. The Backpacks.com story and its audience began to take shape like the congealing of jello in the refrigerator. Nice use of simile, huh? We realized the root of this brand is the relationship a person has with their backpack. Throughout life transitions the one constant, the one continuous resource along the way is a backpack. Always there for the adventure; to support and carry the load so you can enjoy the ride. More than a backpack, it’s a companion for life-travelers.
We drew visual inspiration from all over. A mood board was created to dictate future brand photography, the overall brand mood and style, color palette, language and typography.
Naturally, the identity followed these footsteps. The logo was designed to pay homage to the patch found on so many backpacks throughout history. A functional design element one thinks of as inherent to the traditional backpack, this diamond shape became our icon. The goal was to own the backpacks space, so why not own the symbol associated with it. We paired the logo with: Along For The Journey. This tagline speaks to our initial story that the backpack is with you on your journey through life, it is the constant accessory that ‘has your back’. And the Backpacks.com brand is with you on that journey.
main + supporting colors
Maintaining a neutral foundation, the primary brand colors are set as grey and white. With six lifestyle categories, we identified each with a corresponding name and color. The intention was to keep the color tonality sophisticated while speaking to the individual category. The Outdoor sector, for example, was assigned a deep green to resonate the feeling of nature.
Clean typography with clear hierarchy helps shape the overall brand identity and promotes a user-friendly experience.
Lifestyle categories allowed for additional color identification as well as an opportunity to have a killer photoshoot. Working with our go-to photography parter, editorial brand imagery became a key contributor to the Backpacks.com story.
We set out to create a unique, curated e-commerce brand experience to support a company with aspirations of dominating the online backpack category space. Our primary objective was to set the bar for online backpack retailers, ensuring backpacks.com owns the space. Product imagery is unobtrusively dispersed throughout the website to promote sales without overwhelming the customer. We subtly showcase featured backpack brands through photography, hover options and specific brand pages as well.