It may be a bit of a stretch to call a redesign and new brand identity a feature but bare with me for a minute. Earlier this week Shapeways launched a redesign of the site including a complete overhaul of the brand identity. This was designed to clear up several years of detritus that had accumulated and offer a more welcoming experience. I love it and it has been well received by existing community members.
Why do I call it a feature? Much the same way in which speed is a feature. You can have your team work on only so many things at once and improving speed or doing a design and brand overhaul come at the cost of working on other features. And in both cases an improvement will lead to more usage. Based on experience across many we startups I would argue that you should prioritize speed and design more highly than most features. And just to be clear, by design I don’t mean pretty pictures but visual look and feel *and* usability. Good design combines both. It invites the user in and makes the service easy and fun to use.
A big congrats to the Shapeways team which over the course of the last twelve months has delivered on dramatically improved speed and now on a great redesign all the while still rolling out other new features (such as much improved shop management).