5 inspiring web design case studies
A good case study makes for a top calling card; check out these examples.
The reality of web design is that once you've finished a project, you hopefully move straight onto the next one. However, every site you deliver is an essential portfolio piece that demonstrates your skills and abilities, and while you'll usually want to link to your recent work on your site, it pays to do the job properly.
Rather than simply grabbing a screenshot of a landing page and a link and adding it to your online portfolio, writing up an engaging case study on your work can be a lot more worthwhile. Case studies don't need to be lengthy essays; they just need to give readers a taste of your process and provide some insight into the challenges you've faced over the course of a web build and how you solved them.
They're a great way to let potential clients know how you work, and they can also provide inspiration for other designers and developers; here are five of our favourite recent examples. Make sure you also check out our top web design tips .
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01. Museum of Science and Industry of Chicago
For a really inspiring case study, it's hard to beat DogStudio's extensive piece (opens in new tab) chronicling its work for the Museum of Science and Industry of Chicago. The museum is a vast and highly respected American institution, and you can't help but get the impression that DogStudio was punching well above its weight when it won the commission to rethink and revamp its web platform, but as this case study reveals, it carried the job off with aplomb.
Packed with revealing wireframes, imagery and animations, it's a fascinating insight into a massive and challenging build that had to cater for more than five million online visitors wanting to do everything from buy tickets through to figuring out where to park and finding information about individual exhibits.
02. National Geographic: A Bear's-Eye View of Yellowstone
Sometimes it's better to show rather than tell. For this captivating look at Yellowstone National Park as seen by four bears fitted with camera collars and GPS, Hello Monday had a wealth of footage, data and expert analysis to work with. And rather than go into dry details of how it fitted everything together, it keeps things brief in its case study (opens in new tab) , providing a short outline of the project and deliverables before moving on to an entirely visual essay that demonstrates just how much work went into creating this digital feature.
As well as a good helping of footage and screenshots showcasing what the site's all about, what we really love about this study is a section dedicated to how Hello Monday stamped its own personality on the project, breathing extra life into the feature with animation, watercolour illustrations and pencil-drawn portraits of each bear.
03. Once Upon a Time in… Hollywood
Currently doing big business at the box office, Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in… Hollywood is a love letter to 1960's cinema that recreates its era with Tarantino's typical attention to detail. And to create an online presence that captured the feel of 1969 Hollywood as well as the film, LA agency Watson went the extra mile to create a digital magazine that feels like it could have come off a newsstand 50 years ago.
In this case study (opens in new tab) the Watson team explain not only the thinking behind the magazine and its pitch-perfect adverts, but also how they create a physical print run of the mag that got handed out at the premiere and first-night screenings, creating a whole other social buzz as movie fans posted shots of their magazine to prove that they were there. If you're looking for ideas on how to run a strong social campaign, there's some great material here.
04. British Red Cross
Kota's case study on its recent work with the British Red Cross (opens in new tab) is a clear and concise piece that provides valuable insight on the challenges – and opportunities – of working on a campaign with an institution with clear-cut brand guidelines that need to be adhered to. In the case of the British Red Cross's OneKindThing campaign, Kota had to create a platform that stood out from previous campaigns while staying within the society's pretty epic brand guidelines.
With a handful of images and a couple of paragraphs, Kota outlines how it managed just that, and also covers some of the technical hurdles that had to be overcome to deliver the finished site. The end result was well worth the effort, as the British Red Cross testimonial at the end of the case study reveals.
05. Stonewall Forever
To mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, an event that helped bring about the Pride movement, Stink Digital partnered with The LGBT Community Center to create Stonewall Forever, an immersive digital experience that features key narratives and previously unheard stories from LGBTQ+ history.
Stink Digital's case study explains how it built a living monument (opens in new tab) to 50 years of Pride, based in Christopher Park, New York, but accessible anywhere through a website or AR app, and goes into some detail of the challenges of creating a WebGL monument that consists of over 10,000 individual shards with post-processing effects, but still runs at 60fps, even on low-end devices.
Beyond the technical challenges, though, this is an absorbing and insightful piece on a project that explores life before, during and after the Stonewall Riots.
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Jim McCauley is a writer, performer and cat-wrangler who started writing professionally way back in 1995 on PC Format magazine, and has been covering technology-related subjects ever since, whether it's hardware, software or videogames. A chance call in 2005 led to Jim taking charge of Computer Arts' website and developing an interest in the world of graphic design, and eventually led to a move over to the freshly-launched Creative Bloq in 2012. Jim now works as a freelance writer for sites including Creative Bloq, T3 and PetsRadar, specialising in design, technology, wellness and cats, while doing the occasional pantomime and street performance in Bath and designing posters for a local drama group on the side.
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19 Examples of Online Case Studies Done Right
Designers generally don’t like writing. After all, creative problem-solving through design uses visual, not verbal tools, right? But, sadly for many, case studies are supposed to contain text, too. This is where a lot of designers and art directors stumble, ending up either with poorly crafted case studies, or no case studies in their portfolio at all. And that’s a huge mistake. Online case studies (because these days, if it’s not online, it’s not there at all) are immensely important as they provide a compact, informative display of not just your skills and expertise, but your professionalism too. A good case study shows that you understand the concept of focus, that you can distinguish between different layers of relevance and also sheds some light on your creative process. As such, case studies are an indispensable hiring tool.
That being said, let’s see how the visually-oriented folks can craft a case study that ticks all the right boxes.
Quick Tips for Designing Perfect Online Case Studies
If you’re in doubt as to where to start with your case studies, here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Stay focused . Don’t use case studies as an opportunity to channel your revolutionary ideas, but don’t delve in conventionalities, either. Don’t try to tell everything about the project at once, or at all. Your clients don’t need to know everything you did for a project. But they do need to know the relevant bits.
- Provide a solid structure. Scannable content is the form that works the best, whatever the format. Separate your key information in tidy, well-rounded units. These include, but are not limited to: project target/goal/outcome, background, evaluation, concept, implementation, conclusion.
- Provide essential project information. Viewers need the who, the what and the when.
- Treat the page as a gallery wall. Consider your own portfolio style and create case study pages that are in line with it, but also convey the character and the spirit of the project, too. When displaying visual material, don’t just scatter it around the page – it won’t impress anyone. Try exhibiting it in engaging, interactive frames, add interaction for better immersion, and display the material in their intended environment – various device screens, etc.
- Maintain good measure. You want to dazzle the visitors, not blind them. If your case studies are too cluttered, flashy or visually saturated, they might create an undesired effect. Go for minimalism, but avoid making your pages look poor.
Sure, things like these are sometimes easier said than done. That’s why we prepared a curated selection of the best, most inspiring online case studies we handpicked around the web, hoping to give you some cues and ideas for your own cases. Here’s what we’ll talk about:
Juicebrothers by Lama Lama
Art of swissdent by creative nights, max shkret by zhenya rynzhuk, mercado by loer architecten, self scenter by ultranoir, fontshare by wemakefab, more & more nespresso by playful, bian 2016 by baillat studio, prada employees online store by niccolò miranda, ortovivo by k95, obys agency typography principles, komuso design by tubik, the 92 group by humana studio, dreamhaus by wørks studio, topline by parsons branding, weekend by hello today, posted by fuge, decathlon app by fuego camina conmigo, unstuck by violet office.
If you read our piece on creative page transitions , you probably remember Lama Lama , a creative digital agency from Amsterdam, and their Juicebrothers project. The case study for the project (the organic, cold-pressed juice brand from Netherlands) is presented in a combination of playfulness and youth typical of Lama Lama, and a high level of professionalism, also typical of the agency . The main visual motif is the beautiful deep green color that communicates health and vitality, featured extensively in layouts for the Juicebrothers website. Small white typography conveys just the right amount of information about the project and allows the imagery to take center stage. The case study page opens with a sort of split screen between bits of text on the left and a vertical image gallery to the right, and then proceeds with larger image and video sections displaying selected bits of visual content for the brand. All the while, we also get to play with the cursor effect – an oversized, pixelized snake trail that follows the mouse movements.
Creative Nights is a UX design consultancy and creative studio headquartered in Prague, with an impressive roster of international projects. One of these projects is the website for the renowned dental products brand, Swissdent. Art of Swissdent is designed as a crossover between an eCommerce website and an online presentation of the brand. The case study, available at the agency’s website in their Works section, follows the style and the look of the agency’s branding and design, and the selected imagery from the project is given in beautiful frame sections with round edges. The entire page is perfectly balanced in terms of atmosphere, colors and dynamics , and makes the displayed work appear as an integral part of the agency’s own aesthetics, even if that may not necessarily be the case. The page ends with three fun, oversized buttons that the visitors can use to share their impressions with the agency.
Zhenya Rynzhuk is an architect-turned-art director with a solid industry experience and quite a few awards under her belt. Her website, which has received accolades for overall design as well as for mobile excellence, features some innovative design solutions, plenty of interactivity and just the right amount of brutalist details to keep things exciting in a minimalist environment . The Work section features several case studies for the projects Zhenya is most proud of, including art direction and interface design for Max Shkret , an award-winning digital artist creating 3D digital models. After an airy, minimalist and monochromatic section introducing the project, the page proceeds with a scroll-animated gallery of select project imagery. The images of Shkret’s digital models of animals (for which he hopes to raise enough money to turn into actual physical objects) are presented in successive full-width sections, each with a background that matches the object chromatically), resulting in an interesting, exciting stroll through Shrek’s imaginary world . This layout also adds a welcome touch of color to Zhenya’s generally monochromatic ambient.
Loer Architecten is a Dutch architecture studio with a beautiful, airy, dynamic website based on full-screen imagery, interactivity and interesting navigational solutions. The Projects section includes an interactive links list from which we get to navigate to the projects that interest us. We picked the Mercado project , which has the goal of transforming an abandoned backalley in the center of Groeningen into a thriving commercial and urban hub. Just as it would be expected from an architecture studio, the case study is clean and precise, opening with the most essential information , such as status and location. It is the page layout, however, that gives it a welcome kick and saves it from being plain and dull . The project name is displayed in vertical letters to avoid occupying precious space on the page. Thin straight and curved interface lines give it dynamicity, and so do animations in individual pieces of visual content, as well as animated scrolling effects. There isn’t a single full-width or full-screen image in this case study which, combined with ample use of negative space, gives it a very clean, breathable character.
Commissioned by Comme des Garcons to create an interactive digital experience helping customers discover their fragrances, the French digital agency Ultranoir came up with Self Scenter , a Web GL-based reinvention of the brand’s Fragrance Finder so that it dynamically creates user-specific shapes. The case study shares some of the immersiveness of the project, especially in the hero section with a video and a large title. The case study, however, assumes a cleaner, more informative and practical character later on the page, sharing some of the visual pieces that best convey the atmosphere of the project – videos and select imagery. And the project is truly stunning, too – a beautiful dark interface with a somewhat mysterious character is graced by superbly designed elements with utmost attention to detail and aesthetic coherence. These dark visuals are contrasted by a light background, complete with the cursor shaped like a dot that changes from black to white and vice versa, depending on the surface it hovers upon.
Wemakefab is an old acquaintance from our exploration of the power of interactive links in web design , and today we want to take a look at the case study for the project they developed for the online font aggregator Fontshare. As we get to learn from the case study, the project involved complete visual rebranding, interface design and even the logo redesign. And we have to say, this is a proper case study here, the one that ticks all the boxes as to how a case study should be done and what it should include . Each element of the project is listed and illustrated in a logical, sequential manner, on a clean, high-contrast black and white page. It starts with the project blurb, and then moves to font cards, internal pages, mobile view, the palette and select details. All visuals are given in a manner that follows the principles of usability and clean design – they are large (occasionally oversized), clean, carefully arranged, with occasional thin lines, both vertical and horizontal, that sequence off the sections. Several elements give off a spirit of playfulness and humor – like the section that switches from white ot black when hovered upon, oversized typography and the blinking cursor. The case study is stylistically coherent and tight and very well matched to the nature and the purpose of the project.
Playful is a collaborative collective of digital creators specialized in art direction and moving picture campaigns. More & More Nespresso is, by their own admission, one of the most challenging and rewarding projects the agency has worked on. The case study for the project is just as complex and rich as the project itself. It opens with an impressive hero slider introducing some of the textures that played a central role in the project, in a deep, sultry purple. Carefully curated images and videos from the project are skillfully arranged along the page, contrasted with large empty spaces with light backgrounds and text, offering a welcome pause from the visual feast. The color play is particularly striking – the project itself features a delicate interplay between rich, deep burgundys, greens and blues on one hand, and fine, elegant pastels on the other. The same interplay is repeated in the case study, and the elegant, sophisticated character of the project is underlined by the use of the lovely Antiga typeface throughout the page. The page features a director’s cut video, which is the centerpiece of the project, but doesn’t take over the case study, as it is after all exactly that – a case study in which the agency explains the creative process and pinpoints main visual cues and motifs.
You may remember the Baillat Studio from our piece on inspiring menu design , in which we praised the studio’s modern, interactive fullscreen menu. Today we’re going to check out the Project section of the website, specifically the case study for the 2016 edition of BIAN (the International Digital Art Biennale). The visual identity for the festival was based on black and red, a color combination that creates a lovely contrast with the page’s light gray background and black interface typography. A short text about the target and the main identity elements (Swiss style-based aesthetics, right-angle frames, repetition, lines and precision) follows the opening hero section with a full-width visual from the project. After this introductory section, we get to explore the visuals from the project, presented in the form of photography, video and images of project material in real life, in its designated ambience. The agency, therefore, decided to let the images speak for themselves, without excessive explanations and textual narratives . And it was a good call, too – the page is compact and informative, just what a case study should be.
Here’s a designer we love to feature in our articles – we’ve written about Niccolò Miranda in our pieces on poster-inspired web design and on great examples of footer design , to name a few. This time around, let’s take a look at how this talented Italian designer and developer with a penchant for illustration decided to present his featured works on his website, using the case study for Prada Employees Online Store as an example. The first thing we notice is that the project pages are completely in line with the overall style of Miranda’s portfolio. By that we mean the paper-like texture, the torn paper effect, the columns and sections resembling newspaper layouts, and, of course, illustrations . The page opens with a hero section that holds a lovely illustration from the project he did for Prada (an online store that sells the brand’s previous collections). We then move on to a section explaining what it was that Miranda was commissioned to do, and sections explaining how he did it. What’s interesting (in addition to the distinct and idiosyncratic style) is that the imagery from the project is presented not in the main page content, but instead in a sidebar that opens to the right when we click on the appropriate icon . The page also features a big oval button that leads to the project’s live site, and that’s about it. It is basically more of a project blurb page than a case study per se, but considering its unique style and Miranda’s amazing talent, we figured it deserved a mention here as well.
K95 is a design, branding and communications agency from Catania, Sicily. They work with mostly Italian clients but have a few international names on their roster as well. Their website features a neat list of projects in the form of an interactive link carousel, each link leading to the appropriate case study. Today we’re going to check out the one for Ortovivo , a Sicilian organic food production company. Each project is neatly divided into sections that include description, target, branding and packaging , linked in the header (from which we can also turn off the case study and return to the homepage). The layout is airy and clean, with plenty of empty space around each piece of visual content, and a large circular animated button inviting us to scroll to explore the project. Sections with empty space are combined with full-width interactive ones, moving and expanding as we scroll. It is a dynamic, modern and skillfully designed page that unites good UX, usability and efficiency with modern design practices that speak volumes of the agency’s expertise and taste.
Obys Agency is a creative design agency from Ukraine with a focus on UX/UI design, animation, graphic design and development. Their website is a modern, streamlined and fluid display of their works, principles, accolades and much more. As an agency that flaunts a serious approach to everything they do, Obys wanted to share some of their ethos and the artistic and design principles they follow in their work, and that’s why they created a standalone website on Typography Principles , while the main website has a page that serves as a case study for it. The site includes three sections explaining how the agency uses fonts, how it combines them and what rules it follows when it comes to typography. The page follows the white on black aesthetic line of the rest of the website, with sections that roll up or down revealing underlying content. Navigation is particularly interesting here, as we get to explore the visual content through scrolling, clicking on oversized interactive buttons, and play videos. Numbered sections and diagonal arrows hint to physical navigation signals (like traffic or airport ones), and the part of the study that deals with animation is presented in a separate unit. The website itself is rather impressive and the case study does an excellent job at conveying its complexity and elegance, both design-wise and in terms of UX.
Tubik Studio is a full-stack digital service agency with a focus on UX and UI design. Their website offers a rather no-frills (but nevertheless striking) display of services and works the studio is most proud of, with a gallery of images leading to specific projects. The page for Komuso Design project, for instance, offers an informative and hands-on overview of the project. It opens with an intro hero image, followed by brief project info presented in a simple, readable form, with comfortable black Gilroy typography on a white background. The visual content is presented in the form of videos on a lovely marble-like background, combined with screenshots from the project arranged on a beautifully combined palette of pastels. A particularly well-designed section is the boxed split slider gallery that offers a dynamic and convenient way of displaying several instances of content without cluttering the page or making it too long. The study ends with the visual system: a color scheme with HEX codes, some representative samples of typography and the mobile layout. The entire page bears an airy, pleasant character, perfectly aligned with the client’s brand and product (a wellness tool designed to help people relax through breathing).
Humana Studio is a Portuguese agency that helps build brands with a social and environmental impact. They were commissioned by the 92 Group, a design studio that challenges traditions in media and entertainment through irreverence, unconventionality and youth. Obviously, this was an excellent fit as the Humana Studio has a distinctly disruptive approach. The case study for the 92 Group brand identity and communication strategy partly follows the same disruptive principles – especially in terms of visual communication – but also some more conventional ones, specifically when it comes to UX. The visual content is saturated, loud and bold , with strong, deep colors on a black background, but the way it is arranged on the page guarantees proper navigation, readability and ease of consumption . The sections are topped with a subtle zoom-in effect and a yellow round cursor that shrinks and expands and the text is short and to the point. The study is brief but concentrated, informative and practical, coherent in character and atmosphere.
WØRKS Studio is a New York-based consultancy specializing in creative direction, strategy and design. Their main website is an exciting showcase of both the agency ethos and their projects, and is marked by a distinct cinematic approach, with a lot of information and content being handed in form of immersive fullscreen videos and animated sequences. The DreamHaus project is presented as an animated study of the pillar design elements used for the project – with the main focus on typography and the palette . The fullscreen hero section opens with a large animated logo of the project, proceeds with a palette of beautiful pastels, with names and hex codes, and ends with a sequence that showcases the typography used for the project, and the main layout style, as well as textures. The visitor can scroll to learn more about the project and its goal, as well as the main guidelines that the agency followed in the creative direction of this project. The images related to the project, or the products of the direction, if you will, are presented with animation effects that feature a brief flash of yellow, which is the agency’s signature color, thus providing a continuity between the project and its creator and, of course, reinforcing the agency’s own branding.
Our most frequent readers might remember Parsons Branding from our piece on inspiring creative agencies and designers , in which we praised the agency’s beautiful UI design and interesting navigation solutions. Today, we want to check out one of their case studies, specifically the one for Topline , the South African tool manufacturer. The case studies all feature unique page navigation – the left portion of the screen contains a numbered section with jump links to specific parts of the case study : Overview, Identity, Packaging and so on, and of course we can simply scroll down and explore the entire study in its intended order. The background is in the agency’s signature green and gray, with a very subtle paper-like texture, giving the entire interface a lifelike quality. The left side, the one with the table of contents, remains static as we scroll, assuring easy navigation and orientation on the page, which is, in itself, quite rich in content, both visual and textual. Certain sections are given in horizontal scroll sliders, so we get an impression that the page expands in all directions. This is an extremely well thought-out case study, brimful of information for those interested in exploring the project in great detail, but at the same time simple and informative for those looking to just skim the content.
The Japanese Hello Today did a quite complete agency work for the home appliance manufacturer Weekend, from strategic planning and branding to graphic design, web design, photo and art direction and even copywriting. The Weekend case study on the agency website is a modern, elegantly dark showcase of everything the agency did, from the first steps to the completion of the project. Discrete white typography on a black background introduces basic project information and brand philosophy, both in English and in Japanese, before we scroll down to visuals. These are presented in a typically Japanese, dignified manner, gently floating on the black background, creating a beautiful contrast and a strange sense of calm . Thin, subtle interface lines provide some framework for the visual content and communicate rather successfully with the overall aesthetics of the website – minimalist and stripped-down.
Fuge is a Moscow-based design agency delivering UI, branding and digital solutions. The agency website is minimalist, in a very reduced palette, with small typography and on-lover grid patterns, resulting in a modern, serious look. This character is repeated throughout the website, including the individual case pages. Our favorite one is the case study for Posted , a design magazine for which the agency did branding, as well as UX and UI services and animations. The case page starts rather minimalistically, with a large image on a light background and just a few bits of text. As we scroll, more and more pieces of content appear on screen, in an interactive and rather fluid way . The case study is divided into sections – logo and elements, desktop and mobile versions of the magazine website. Each image can be expanded in a popup, with smooth and modern transitions, giving the page a dynamic and modern look. This atmosphere is reinforced by a modern, minimalist palette reduced to grayscale, black and red, which is the Posted brand palette. The images (or rather previews) are alternately arranged on the page, creating a lovely balance, and the entire composition appears to be held in place by the grid lines that appear as we hover over certain areas.
Decathlon has long planned a redesign and a relaunch of its app for the Spanish market but the Covid-19 pandemic put a halt to those plans for a while. As soon as the pandemic loosened, the sports goods company reached out to the Barcelona-based, Twin Peaks-named agency Fuego Camina Conmigo (Fire Walk with Me) for a range of services from digital strategy, art direction and concept, to copy, audiovisual content and social ads. The Decathlon App case study is available at the agency website, and it’s one of the most successful, detailed and complete studies we’ve seen in a while . it ticks all the boxes in terms of what a case study should contain – the context, the target, the implementation, and so on, but it does so in a way that is by no means dry or technical. The agency achieved this by skillfully alternating light and readable text sections with fullscreen sections with the visual material from the app , which can be viewed either as images or clicked to play a video. All the while, the agency maintains its own visual identity, present in typography, layout styles and elements such as the round cursor, buttons and icons.
Here’s a project that is as noble as it is well-carried out. Unstuck by Violet Office is an effort started by the CEO of Chobani and several other stakeholders with the goal of helping refugees find full-time jobs in partner companies and their supply chains. Chobani was the first to join the project, of course, and it was soon followed by other major brands like Ben & Jerry and Dole. Violet Office did the branding, web design and development, as well as social media. The branding part is perhaps the most impressive – the agency created a logo and wordmark that can easily fit any brand partner’s logo , and the first part of the case study focuses on that particular effort, complete with rich visuals proving the efficiency of the design . It then proceeds with an analysis of the Unstuck visual system (colors, patterns, typography), and ends with examples of brand activations, complete with the launch video. The high-contrast visuals are displayed full-width, either in galleries or individually, which creates an immersive effect on the visitor, who ends up being completely drawn into the narrative of this commendable project.
Wrapping It Up
As we saw from the examples we visited today, while a good case study may not necessarily have to strictly adhere to a formulaic structure, it’s still a good idea to give it some structure and to conceptualize it in a way that communicates clearly and directly with the viewer. And since the viewers are also potential clients, it’s needless to stress how important this is.
We’ve seen some “proper” case studies with neatly divided sections and a tight structure repeated throughout each study. We’ve also seen some more “relaxed” ones, and some that perhaps don’t really qualify as case studies in the strictest terms but that due to their quality and supreme design elements deserve a mention.
Hopefully we managed to inspire you by showing a variety of styles and methodologies you can follow in creating your own case studies. Feel free to share with us your own favorites or, even better, your own work!
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How to write a case study for your website
Posted on 11/05/2020 by Team Hallam
Now is a great time to be updating your case studies. Here are the tried and tested techniques for writing case studies that will capture you audience attention, and help to convert your leads into customers.
Case studies are an essential part of any business’ marketing collateral. But creating a really good one takes more than just putting pen to paper and hoping for the best. Learn why they are important, and how to write a case study for your website that not only packs a punch, but drives results.
What is a case study?
A case study is a way of demonstrating how your business’s helped a person or client overcome a particular challenge. It clearly lays out how your products or services were used to solve a problem, and the results.
It’s important to note that a case study isn’t a press release or a sales pitch (at least, not directly), it’s about showcasing your work and framing it in the context of helping others. In short, it’s not about you, but your customer.
Why are case studies important?
Case studies can often get overlooked when it comes to producing marketing material. After all, they’re not exactly the most glamorous form of content to produce, and blog posts can seem more appealing. So why invest in case studies at all? Haven’t we moved on to other things?
The truth is that case studies are, and continue to be, incredibly effective. They help to attract new customers, cement trust and increase conversions.
It’s the storytelling nature of the format that boosts its effectiveness, and that’s what case studies allow you to do – tell a story about your brand and how you’ve helped others. The story you draft paints a picture, stimulates emotions, and gives your business greater selling power. Storytelling, by using your customer’s voice in a data-backed piece, is an invaluable sales tool – and that’s why case studies continue to work so well.
What makes a good case study?
There are a number of things a good case study should include. Here are the core things you should consider when you are preparing to write a case study for your website, and you can use these as a sort of checklist when creating your draft.
A compelling subject matter
Not every piece of work is worthy of a case study. Choose your best projects and accomplishments, where the client has been happy with what’s been achieved and you have clear results to show for it.
It doesn’t matter the size or scope of the work, either. It could have been a one-off, short campaign or a full website redesign over the course of several months. What matters is the impact you had.
And then it needs a good angle. Is there anything particularly different or unique about the problem you’ve solved? Anything different that you did as a business? Don’t use details that don’t support the purpose, but think about just why it was so successful.
Case studies work mainly because they tend to be very focused and industry or sector-specific. Simply put, you should never see a case study that’s too general and not targeted to the industry you’re in.
Being specific means you’ll strike a code with your target market. You want it to be relatable, and for them to be able to recognise themselves in your story.
If you work with a number of different industries, it’s a good idea to create a case study for each, so you ensure you can reach each of your audiences.
Case studies are solution-centric, so you need to show yours at work. An effective one will clearly demonstrate how you took a problem and solved it using your expertise, products or services. There needs to be a before and after – a story.
Few things can excite a buyer more than factual claims, stats and clear data – and if you don’t have the results, you simply don’t have a case study.
Evidence is particularly key nowadays, since social proof is part of the technology renaissance we’re witnessing. Customers have become more savvy and demanding of proof.
Great case studies context, relevance and credibility. See this article on CXL about writing emotion-packed case studies.
Years ago, customers relied heavily on hard copy brochures, catalogues and leaflets when making a buying decision. Taking a statement at face value is no longer the done thing. In the past, if you saw an advertisement for a fish and chips shop, claiming they were the best in the city, you may just have believed it – but now it takes a little more than just words.
Thanks to social media, your potential customers have the freedom and ease to access information. As a result, they’re less trusting of marketing material. They’d rather access authentic third-party industry reviews and data. They want to know what other people say about your brand or organisation.
Choose your data carefully – ideally it should be reflective of the problem your client was facing. The more thought-provoking your data, the better. For example, in our recent case study for Kerry’s Fresh we highlighted that their subscriber base had grown tenfold in the space of a single year. Naturally, people want to know how!
Quotes and testimonials
There’s nothing quite like hearing it from the horse’s mouth. Including a quote or testimonial from your customer is not just a trust signal, but an opportunity for them to tell the story in their own words, which is far more convincing to other prospective customers than anything else.
Last but by no means least, your case study needs to presented in an engaging, easily digestible way.
This includes good formatting and a clear structure (which we’ll get to in a moment) but also the visual elements to it. You may want to enlist the help of a designer to really present it in the most user-friendly way. Depending on time and budget, you could even create a short video to help illustrate the story.
Of course, all the usual things for writing for the web still apply: headings and subheading, bullet points and lists should all be included. Make it as easy as possible for the scanners and skimmers out there to read and engage with it.
How to write your case study
As we said previously, it’s not simply a case of putting pen to paper. The key to writing a successful case study is nailing its structure. It has to read well, and it has to tell that all-important story that captures your audience.
Thankfully, there’s a tried-and-tested method of doing this which we adhere to. To help your writing flow nicely, we recommend structuring it into the following sections:
1. The headline
This one-liner should be an impactful overview of the project, perhaps highlighting one of the key goals or achievements.
2. The client
Open with a short introduction to the client – who they are, their background and industry. You can base it on what they say on their company website or LinkedIn profile.
3. The challenge
Explain over a paragraph or two the challenges your client was facing and wanting to overcome. There could be just one, or a few different pain points.
4. The solution (and your approach to it)
Now for what you actually did. Talk about how your products or services helped solve that problem. Get into the specifics, and also explain your thinking and decision-making throughout the process.
5. The results
This is where you lay out It’s always better to use real numbers, not just vague statements like ‘more than doubled their traffic’. Really hammer it home by pulling out the big guns!
6. The testimonial
Finish up with a quote from your customer, ideally stating how their business has been improved or how happy they are with the service received. It doesn’t need to be lengthy, but it should be genuine. And be sure to use their own words, rather than trying to make it sound typically corporate.
Case studies: your next steps
So there you have it – our complete guide on how to write a case study for your website that captures your audience and hopefully converts them. Of course, no two case studies are ever the same (and nor should they be), but if you stick to a structure you can
Above all, the three fundamental elements are:
- What was the problem?
- What solution did you provide?
- What proven results can you showcase?
As long as you answer those questions fully and in detail and you can’t go too wrong.
Effective case studies require time and effort to produce, but the impact they can have and the benefits they can bring to your business make them an incredibly worthy investment.
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How to Write a Web Design Case Study that Lands New Clients
- by Simon Heaton
- Finding New Clients
- Jan 15, 2016
- 10 minute read
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One of the toughest challenges designers face when pitching prospective clients is winning over their trust and confidence. If your prospective clients haven’t worked with you in the past, they’ll likely have hesitations about handing over their hard-earned cash to a stranger. To win their confidence (and close the deal!), you’ll need to take some extra steps to reassure them that your design work will not only be a success aesthetically, but that it will also help them achieve their business objectives.
One of the greatest tools in a designer’s arsenal for overcoming this unique obstacle is the case study.
Case studies are narratives that reveal what you are capable of as a designer. They allow you to walk prospective clients through the contextual details of your existing project work, including your design brief , prototyping , and final product, so you can outline your creative strategy from conception to completion (learn more about rapid prototyping , and take a look at some great prototyping tools to help with this process). They are the perfect tool for boosting the quality of proposals, building your web design portfolio , and adding credibility to your portfolio website .
The best case studies move beyond intuition-based explanations and document the rationale behind the design, UX, and visual decisions. They offer a more humanized perspective into the design process that, ultimately, makes a business case for your work. This leaves you in a better position to prove your value (and price) to even the most skeptical client.
You might also like: How to Create a Compelling Web Design Portfolio
First things first: Plan for your case study ahead of time
Before we take a deep dive into the kind of content that makes a great case study, I want to stress the importance of creating a case study for each project you work on.
While this may seem like a lot of extra work, you can facilitate the writing process by taking the time to proactively think about how you will document your projects and their successes before you begin working. That way, you’re guaranteed to end the project with strong documentation that reflects your thinking, iterations, and key results as accurately as possible.
With that out of the way, let’s take a look at the five core elements that should be included in any case study.
You might also like: The Ultimate Guide to Finding Web Design Clients .
The 5 core elements of a web design case study
1. the overview.
Think of your Overview section as the executive summary of your case study. It’s the Cole’s Notes version of the document, and allows your prospects to quickly understand the highlights of your past work without reading the entire thing. This section should include the core takeaways from all other sections including the main problem, an overview of the solution, and key results.
While the Overview will be your least detailed part of the case study, it is probably your most important. Only the most meticulous clients will take the time to read through your entire case study; the majority of them will just quickly skim through in order get the gist. Because of this, drafting a complete and well-articulated overview should be your top priority.
An overview section can be as simple as this example by Work & Co .
Pro Tip: Write your Overview section once the rest of your case study is finished. That way you can simply scan over the main points of each section and summarize them into a one or two paragraph synopsis.
2. The Context and Challenge
The second section of your case study — commonly referred to as the Context and the Challenge — is designed to provide your prospective client with a detailed description of the context that led to the creation of the project. If it’s well-written, the reader will leave with a solid understanding of the environmental factors and problems that you were hired to solve as a designer.
This section can be distilled into three main elements:
1. Project background and description — The contextual information for the project including timelines, budgetary constraints, and the overarching purpose of the job.
2. The problem — The “why?” and the focal point for the project. Your case study needs to clearly explain the problem that led to the onset of the project. For example, if you were working on an ecommerce project then your problem could be something similar to:
“Interest for company X’s core product was growing internationally at an unprecedented scale. This led to severe logistical and distribution problems that could not be fixed by physical retail solutions alone.”
3. Project goals and objectives — Every website you work on should have tangible goals and objectives associated with the project’s problem. Are you trying to drive more traffic to the site overall? Optimize product pages for lower bounce rate or higher conversions? Reduce cart abandon rates? No matter what your objectives are, try your best to include any quantifiable metrics that were known at the onset of the project.
A simple, yet descriptive, “challenge” in Super Top Secret’s case study
Pro Tip: The core elements of The Challenge are often presented to you in the project Request for Proposal or creative brief. If you are working on a more personal level with your client, however, try capturing this information in conversation. This will become the basis of your brief and, eventually, your case study too.
3. The Process and Insight
The purpose of this section is to elaborate on your design process, creative concept, and insight that led to your design decisions. It’s also an opportunity for you to walk your prospective client through the research, workflow, and iterations of your design work.
When writing content for this section, you want to illustrate how you got from The Challenge to The Solution. Make sure the flow of information is logical and that it culminates with a core insight about your client’s audience, business, or industry. These insights can stem from your client’s unique selling properties and key differentiators, or from their audience’s behavioural and consumption habits.
To ensure your reader conclusively arrives at these insights as well, you’re going to need to thoroughly document your research. Include any details about A/B tests , user research interviews, and key brainstorming takeaways that led you to uncover those crucial pieces of information.
A simple version of a “process section” from nurun’s case study
Pro Tip: Finding a core truth about your client’s audience can be one of the toughest challenges as a designer. If you’re lucky, your client might already have substantial research about their customers. Use their knowledge and this research to help you craft an insight. Otherwise, try employing tactics like A/B testing and user research to help guide your design decisions.
4. The Solution
The Solution is where you get to show off your skill and style as a designer. It’s your chance to feature any and all samples of your work — from videos, landing pages, custom integrations, and anything else you created for the project.
To really get the most from this section, be sure to include written descriptions about your design work. Take the time to explain in detail your site’s defining features like its UX, navigation structure, content strategy, or unique mobile attributes. If you put the effort into crafting descriptions that complement your visual assets, your readers will feel much more confident in your decisions as a designer.
A sample highlighting animated design elements from This Also’s case study
Pro Tip: Remember, the medium is the message. Don’t limit yourself to screenshots alone. Incorporate interactive elements - animations, video, transitions, or anything else - that accurately represent your design work to really wow your prospects.
5. The Results
For most business owners, it’s all about the numbers. That’s why this section is crucial for an effectively written case study.
The Results section will cover the qualitative and quantitative success metrics from your project (and if you've tested your product, such as with a contextual inquiry , you should have great metrics to share!). While the type of metrics you report on can vary from one project to another, they should directly address the objectives you established in The Context and Challenge section. Having these results in hand will allow you to show your prospects that your work had a direct influence on your client meeting their goals. If you can do this, you’ll help them feel more comfortable putting their business (and their money) into your hands.
In addition to, or in lieu of, quantifiable metrics, consider including one to three testimonials in this section. These testimonials are another great tactic for boosting the confidence of your prospects. Since the source of these reviews come from outside your business, prospects are more likely to trust them as a reputable reference. When including your testimonials, however, keep them short and sweet. They can be as simple as one or two sentences, so long as they illustrate your previous client’s satisfaction with your work.
A nice mix of qualitative and quantitative results from Simon Pan’s case study
Pro Tip: Be sure to collect testimonials from your clients near the tail-end of your project. Ask them to speak about your process, creative thinking, and the quality of the final product. Just make sure you get their approval to publish them!
5 examples of creative web design case studies
Although case studies should include a lot of important and somewhat formulaic information, they are still an expression of your unique personality and style. This means you have all the liberty in the world to get creative with their format and presentation. To give you some inspiration, here are five examples of creative web design case studies that we loved reading.
Aerolab — Xapo
Fantasy Interactive — Airlines Project
Michael Evensen — Soundcloud App
Robin Noguier — Allocine
Super Top Secret — University of Oregon
Do you have any case studies that you’re proud of? Share them in the comments below.
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About the author
Simon is a coffee lover, former agency digital strategist, and Shopify Partners' Growth Marketing Manager. When he isn’t hustling at the Shopify HQ, you can most likely find him dining at restaurants across the city or brushing up on the latest design trends.
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28 Case Study Examples Every Marketer Should See
Published: March 08, 2023
Putting together a compelling case study is one of the most powerful strategies for showcasing your product and attracting future customers. But it's not easy to create case studies that your audience can’t wait to read.
In this post, we’ll go over the definition of a case study and the best examples to inspire you.
What is a case study?
A case study is a detailed story of something your company did. It includes a beginning — often discussing a conflict, an explanation of what happened next, and a resolution that explains how the company solved or improved on something.
A case study proves how your product has helped other companies by demonstrating real-life results. Not only that, but marketing case studies with solutions typically contain quotes from the customer. This means that they’re not just ads where you praise your own product. Rather, other companies are praising your company — and there’s no stronger marketing material than a verbal recommendation or testimonial. A great case study is also filled with research and stats to back up points made about a project's results.
There are myriad ways to use case studies in your marketing strategy . From featuring them on your website to including them in a sales presentation, a case study is a strong, persuasive tool that shows customers why they should work with you — straight from another customer. Writing one from scratch is hard, though, which is why we’ve created a collection of case study templates for you to get started.
Fill out the form below to access the free case study templates.
Case Study Kit + Templates
Fill out this form to access free case study templates..
There’s no better way to generate more leads than by writing case studies . But without case study examples to draw inspiration from, it can be difficult to write impactful studies that convince visitors to submit a form.
Marketing Case Study Examples
To help you create an attractive and high-converting case study, we've put together a list of some of our favorites. This list includes famous case studies in marketing, technology, and business.
These studies can show you how to frame your company offers in a way that is both meaningful and useful to your audience. So, take a look, and let these examples inspire your next brilliant case study design.
These marketing case studies with solutions show the value proposition of each product. They also show how each company benefited in both the short and long term using quantitative data. In other words, you don’t get just nice statements, like "This company helped us a lot." You see actual change within the firm through numbers and figures.
You can put your learnings into action with HubSpot's Free Case Study Templates . Available as custom designs and text-based documents, you can upload these templates to your CMS or send them to prospects as you see fit.
1. " How Handled Scaled from Zero to 121 Locations with the Help of HubSpot ," by HubSpot
What's interesting about this case study is the way it leads with the customer. That reflects a major HubSpot cornerstone, which is to always solve for the customer first. The copy leads with a brief description of why the CEO of Handled founded the company and why he thought Handled could benefit from adopting a CRM. The case study also opens up with one key data point about Handled’s success using HubSpot, namely that it grew to 121 locations.
Notice that this case study uses mixed media. Yes, there is a short video, but it's elaborated upon in the other text on the page. So while your case studies can use one or the other, don't be afraid to combine written copy with visuals to emphasize the project's success.
Key Learnings from the HubSpot Case Study Example
- Give the case study a personal touch by focusing on the CEO rather than the company itself.
- Use multimedia to engage website visitors as they read the case study.
2. " The Whole Package ," by IDEO
Here's a design company that knows how to lead with simplicity in its case studies. As soon as the visitor arrives at the page, they’re greeted with a big, bold photo and the title of the case study — which just so happens to summarize how IDEO helped its client. It summarizes the case study in three snippets: The challenge, the impact, and the outcome.
Immediately, IDEO communicates its impact — the company partnered with H&M to remove plastic from its packaging — but it doesn't stop there. As the user scrolls down, the challenge, impact, and progress are elaborated upon with comprehensive (but not overwhelming) copy that outlines what that process looked like, replete with quotes and intriguing visuals.
Key Learnings from the IDEO Case Study Example
- Split up the takeaways of your case studies into bite-sized sections.
- Always use visuals and images to enrich the case study experience, especially if it’s a comprehensive case study.
3. " Rozum Robotics intensifies its PR game with Awario ," by Awario
In this case study, Awario greets the user with a summary straight away — so if you’re feeling up to reading the entire case study, you can scan the snapshot and understand how the company serves its customers. The case study then includes jump links to several sections, such as "Company Profile," "Rozum Robotics' Pains," "Challenge," "Solution," and "Results and Improvements."
The sparse copy and prominent headings show that you don’t need a lot of elaborate information to show the value of your products and services. Like the other case study examples on this list, it includes visuals and quotes to demonstrate the effectiveness of the company’s efforts. The case study ends with a bulleted list that shows the results.
Key Learnings from the Awario Robotics Case Study Example
- Create a table of contents to make your case study easier to navigate.
- Include a bulleted list of the results you achieved for your client.
4. " Chevrolet DTU ," by Carol H. Williams
If you’ve worked with a company that’s well-known, use only the name in the title — like Carol H. Williams, one of the nation’s top advertising agencies, does here. The "DTU," stands for "Discover the Unexpected." It generates interest because you want to find out what the initials mean.
They keep your interest in this case study by using a mixture of headings, images, and videos to describe the challenges, objectives, and solutions of the project. The case study closes with a summary of the key achievements that Chevrolet’s DTU Journalism Fellows reached during the project.
Key Learnings from the Carol H. Williams Case Study Example
- If you’ve worked with a big brand before, consider only using the name in the title — just enough to pique interest.
- Use a mixture of headings and subheadings to guide users through the case study.
5. " How Fractl Earned Links from 931 Unique Domains for Porch.com in a Single Year ," by Fractl
Fractl uses both text and graphic design in their Porch.com case study to immerse the viewer in a more interesting user experience. For instance, as you scroll, you'll see the results are illustrated in an infographic-design form as well as the text itself.
Further down the page, they use icons like a heart and a circle to illustrate their pitch angles, and graphs to showcase their results. Rather than writing which publications have mentioned Porch.com during Fractl’s campaign, they incorporated the media outlets’ icons for further visual diversity.
Key Learnings from the Fractl Case Study Example
- Let pictures speak for you by incorporating graphs, logos, and icons all throughout the case study.
- Start the case study by right away stating the key results, like Fractl does, instead of putting the results all the way at the bottom.
6. " The Met ," by Fantasy
What's the best way to showcase the responsiveness and user interface of a website? Probably by diving right into it with a series of simple showcases— which is exactly what Fantasy does on their case study page for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. They keep the page simple and clean, inviting you to review their redesign of the Met’s website feature-by-feature.
Each section is simple, showing a single piece of the new website's interface so that users aren’t overwhelmed with information and can focus on what matters most.
If you're more interested in text, you can read the objective for each feature. Fantasy understands that, as a potential customer, this is all you need to know. Scrolling further, you're greeted with a simple "Contact Us" CTA.
Key Learnings from the Fantasy Case Study Example
- You don’t have to write a ton of text to create a great case study. Focus on the solution you delivered itself.
- Include a CTA at the bottom inviting visitors to contact you.
7. " Rovio: How Rovio Grew Into a Gaming Superpower ," by App Annie
If your client had a lot of positive things to say about you, take a note from App Annie’s Rovio case study and open up with a quote from your client. The case study also closes with a quote, so that the case study doesn’t seem like a promotion written by your marketing team but a story that’s taken straight from your client’s mouth. It includes a photo of a Rovio employee, too.
Another thing this example does well? It immediately includes a link to the product that Rovio used (namely, App Annie Intelligence) at the top of the case study. The case study closes with a call-to-action button prompting users to book a demo.
Key Learnings from the App Annie Case Study Example
- Feature quotes from your client at the beginning and end of the case study.
- Include a mention of the product right at the beginning and prompt users to learn more about the product.
8. " Embracing first-party data: 3 success stories from HubSpot ," by Think with Google
Google takes a different approach to text-focused case studies by choosing three different companies to highlight.
The case study is clean and easily scannable. It has sections for each company, with quotes and headers that clarify the way these three distinct stories connect. The simple format also uses colors and text that align with the Google brand.
Another differentiator is the focus on data. This case study is less than a thousand words, but it's packed with useful data points. Data-driven insights quickly and clearly show how the value of leveraging first-party data while prioritizing consumer privacy.
Key Learnings from the Think with Google Case Study Example
- A case study doesn’t need to be long or complex to be powerful.
- Clear data points are a quick and effective way to prove value.
9. " In-Depth Performance Marketing Case Study ," by Switch
Switch is an international marketing agency based in Malta that knocks it out of the park with this case study. Its biggest challenge is effectively communicating what it did for its client without ever revealing the client’s name. It also effectively keeps non-marketers in the loop by including a glossary of terms on page 4.
The PDF case study reads like a compelling research article, including titles like "In-Depth Performance Marketing Case Study," "Scenario," and "Approach," so that readers get a high-level overview of what the client needed and why they approached Switch. It also includes a different page for each strategy. For instance, if you’d only be interested in hiring Switch for optimizing your Facebook ads, you can skip to page 10 to see how they did it.
The PDF is fourteen pages long but features big fonts and plenty of white space, so viewers can easily skim it in only a few minutes.
Key Learnings from the Switch Case Study Example
- If you want to go into specialized information, include a glossary of terms so that non-specialists can easily understand.
- Close with a CTA page in your case study PDF and include contact information for prospective clients.
10. " Gila River ," by OH Partners
Let pictures speak for you, like OH Partners did in this case study. While you’ll quickly come across a heading and some text when you land on this case study page, you’ll get the bulk of the case study through examples of actual work OH Partners did for its client. You will see OH Partners’ work in a billboard, magazine, and video. This communicates to website visitors that if they work with OH Partners, their business will be visible everywhere.
And like the other case studies here, it closes with a summary of what the firm achieved for its client in an eye-catching way.
Key Learnings from the OH Partners Case Study Example
- Let the visuals speak by including examples of the actual work you did for your client — which is especially useful for branding and marketing agencies.
- Always close out with your achievements and how they impacted your client.
11. " Facing a Hater ," by Digitas
Digitas' case study page for Sprite’s #ILOVEYOUHATER campaign keeps it brief while communicating the key facts of Digitas’ work for the popular soda brand. The page opens with an impactful image of a hundred people facing a single man. It turns out, that man is the biggest "bully" in Argentina, and the people facing him are those whom he’s bullied before.
Scrolling down, it's obvious that Digitas kept Sprite at the forefront of their strategy, but more than that, they used real people as their focal point. They leveraged the Twitter API to pull data from Tweets that people had actually tweeted to find the identity of the biggest "hater" in the country. That turned out to be @AguanteElCofler, a Twitter user who has since been suspended.
Key Learnings from the Digitas Case Study Example
- If a video was part of your work for your client, be sure to include the most impactful screenshot as the heading.
- Don’t be afraid to provide details on how you helped your client achieve their goals, including the tools you leveraged.
12. " Better Experiences for All ," by HermanMiller
HermanMiller sells sleek, utilitarian furniture with no frills and extreme functionality, and that ethos extends to its case study page for a hospital in Dubai.
What first attracted me to this case study was the beautiful video at the top and the clean user experience. User experience matters a lot in a case study. It determines whether users will keep reading or leave. Another notable aspect of this case study is that the video includes closed-captioning for greater accessibility, and users have the option of expanding the CC and searching through the text.
HermanMiller’s case study also offers an impressive amount of information packed in just a few short paragraphs for those wanting to understand the nuances of their strategy. It closes out with a quote from their client and, most importantly, the list of furniture products that the hospital purchased from the brand.
Key Learnings from the HermanMiller Case Study Example
- Close out with a list of products that users can buy after reading the case study.
- Include accessibility features such as closed captioning and night mode to make your case study more user-friendly.
13. " Capital One on AWS ," by Amazon
Do you work continuously with your clients? Consider structuring your case study page like Amazon did in this stellar case study example. Instead of just featuring one article about Capital One and how it benefited from using AWS, Amazon features a series of articles that you can then access if you’re interested in reading more. It goes all the way back to 2016, all with different stories that feature Capital One’s achievements using AWS.
This may look unattainable for a small firm, but you don’t have to go to extreme measures and do it for every single one of your clients. You could choose the one you most wish to focus on and establish a contact both on your side and your client’s for coming up with the content. Check in every year and write a new piece. These don’t have to be long, either — five hundred to eight hundred words will do.
Key Learnings from the Amazon AWS Case Study Example
- Write a new article each year featuring one of your clients, then include links to those articles in one big case study page.
- Consider including external articles as well that emphasize your client’s success in their industry.
14. " HackReactor teaches the world to code #withAsana ," by Asana
While Asana's case study design looks text-heavy, there's a good reason. It reads like a creative story, told entirely from the customer's perspective.
For instance, Asana knows you won't trust its word alone on why this product is useful. So, they let Tony Phillips, HackReactor CEO, tell you instead: "We take in a lot of information. Our brains are awful at storage but very good at thinking; you really start to want some third party to store your information so you can do something with it."
Asana features frequent quotes from Phillips to break up the wall of text and humanize the case study. It reads like an in-depth interview and captivates the reader through creative storytelling. Even more, Asana includes in-depth detail about how HackReactor uses Asana. This includes how they build templates and workflows:
"There's a huge differentiator between Asana and other tools, and that’s the very easy API access. Even if Asana isn’t the perfect fit for a workflow, someone like me— a relatively mediocre software engineer—can add functionality via the API to build a custom solution that helps a team get more done."
Key Learnings from the Asana Example
- Include quotes from your client throughout the case study.
- Provide extensive detail on how your client worked with you or used your product.
15. " Rips Sewed, Brand Love Reaped ," by Amp Agency
Amp Agency's Patagonia marketing strategy aimed to appeal to a new audience through guerrilla marketing efforts and a coast-to-coast road trip. Their case study page effectively conveys a voyager theme, complete with real photos of Patagonia customers from across the U.S., and a map of the expedition. I liked Amp Agency's storytelling approach best. It captures viewers' attention from start to finish simply because it's an intriguing and unique approach to marketing.
Key Learnings from the Amp Agency Example
- Open up with a summary that communicates who your client is and why they reached out to you.
- Like in the other case study examples, you’ll want to close out with a quantitative list of your achievements.
16. " NetApp ," by Evisort
Evisort opens up its NetApp case study with an at-a-glance overview of the client. It’s imperative to always focus on the client in your case study — not on your amazing product and equally amazing team. By opening up with a snapshot of the client’s company, Evisort places the focus on the client.
This case study example checks all the boxes for a great case study that’s informative, thorough, and compelling. It includes quotes from the client and details about the challenges NetApp faced during the COVID pandemic. It closes out with a quote from the client and with a link to download the case study in PDF format, which is incredibly important if you want your case study to be accessible in a wider variety of formats.
Key Learnings from the Evisort Example
- Place the focus immediately on your client by including a snapshot of their company.
- Mention challenging eras, such as a pandemic or recession, to show how your company can help your client succeed even during difficult times.
17. " Copernicus Land Monitoring – CLC+ Core ," by Cloudflight
Including highly specialized information in your case study is an effective way to show prospects that you’re not just trying to get their business. You’re deep within their industry, too, and willing to learn everything you need to learn to create a solution that works specifically for them.
Cloudflight does a splendid job at that in its Copernicus Land Monitoring case study. While the information may be difficult to read at first glance, it will capture the interest of prospects who are in the environmental industry. It thus shows Cloudflight’s value as a partner much more effectively than a general case study would.
The page is comprehensive and ends with a compelling call-to-action — "Looking for a solution that automates, and enhances your Big Data system? Are you struggling with large datasets and accessibility? We would be happy to advise and support you!" The clean, whitespace-heavy page is an effective example of using a case study to capture future leads.
Key Learnings from the Cloudflight Case Study Example
- Don’t be afraid to get technical in your explanation of what you did for your client.
- Include a snapshot of the sales representative prospects should contact, especially if you have different sales reps for different industries, like Cloudflight does.
18. " Valvoline Increases Coupon Send Rate by 76% with Textel’s MMS Picture Texting ," by Textel
If you’re targeting large enterprises with a long purchasing cycle, you’ll want to include a wealth of information in an easily transferable format. That’s what Textel does here in its PDF case study for Valvoline. It greets the user with an eye-catching headline that shows the value of using Textel. Valvoline saw a significant return on investment from using the platform.
Another smart decision in this case study is highlighting the client’s quote by putting it in green font and doing the same thing for the client’s results because it helps the reader quickly connect the two pieces of information. If you’re in a hurry, you can also take a look at the "At a Glance" column to get the key facts of the case study, starting with information about Valvoline.
Key Learnings from the Textel Case Study Example
- Include your client’s ROI right in the title of the case study.
- Add an "At a Glance" column to your case study PDF to make it easy to get insights without needing to read all the text.
19. " Hunt Club and Happeo — a tech-enabled love story ," by Happeo
In this blog-post-like case study, Happeo opens with a quote from the client, then dives into a compelling heading: "Technology at the forefront of Hunt Club's strategy." Say you’re investigating Happeo as a solution and consider your firm to be technology-driven. This approach would spark your curiosity about why the client chose to work with Happeo. It also effectively communicates the software’s value proposition without sounding like it’s coming from an in-house marketing team.
Every paragraph is a quote written from the customer’s perspective. Later down the page, the case study also dives into "the features that changed the game for Hunt Club," giving Happeo a chance to highlight some of the platform’s most salient features.
Key Learnings from the Happeo Case Study Example
- Consider writing the entirety of the case study from the perspective of the customer.
- Include a list of the features that convinced your client to go with you.
20. " Red Sox Season Campaign ," by CTP Boston
What's great about CTP's case study page for their Red Sox Season Campaign is their combination of video, images, and text. A video automatically begins playing when you visit the page, and as you scroll, you'll see more embedded videos of Red Sox players, a compilation of print ads, and social media images you can click to enlarge.
At the bottom, it says "Find out how we can do something similar for your brand." The page is clean, cohesive, and aesthetically pleasing. It invites viewers to appreciate the well-roundedness of CTP's campaign for Boston's beloved baseball team.
Key Learnings from the CTP Case Study Example
- Include a video in the heading of the case study.
- Close with a call-to-action that makes leads want to turn into prospects.
21. " Acoustic ," by Genuine
Sometimes, simple is key. Genuine's case study for Acoustic is straightforward and minimal, with just a few short paragraphs, including "Reimagining the B2B website experience," "Speaking to marketers 1:1," and "Inventing Together." After the core of the case study, we then see a quote from Acoustic’s CMO and the results Genuine achieved for the company.
The simplicity of the page allows the reader to focus on both the visual aspects and the copy. The page displays Genuine's brand personality while offering the viewer all the necessary information they need.
- You don’t need to write a lot to create a great case study. Keep it simple.
- Always include quantifiable data to illustrate the results you achieved for your client.
22. " Using Apptio Targetprocess Automated Rules in Wargaming ," by Apptio
Apptio’s case study for Wargaming summarizes three key pieces of information right at the beginning: The goals, the obstacles, and the results.
Readers then have the opportunity to continue reading — or they can walk away right then with the information they need. This case study also excels in keeping the human interest factor by formatting the information like an interview.
The piece is well-organized and uses compelling headers to keep the reader engaged. Despite its length, Apptio's case study is appealing enough to keep the viewer's attention. Every Apptio case study ends with a "recommendation for other companies" section, where the client can give advice for other companies that are looking for a similar solution but aren’t sure how to get started.
Key Learnings from the Apptio Case Study Example
- Put your client in an advisory role by giving them the opportunity to give recommendations to other companies that are reading the case study.
- Include the takeaways from the case study right at the beginning so prospects quickly get what they need.
23. " Airbnb + Zendesk: building a powerful solution together ," by Zendesk
Zendesk's Airbnb case study reads like a blog post, and focuses equally on Zendesk and Airbnb, highlighting a true partnership between the companies. To captivate readers, it begins like this: "Halfway around the globe is a place to stay with your name on it. At least for a weekend."
The piece focuses on telling a good story and provides photographs of beautiful Airbnb locations. In a case study meant to highlight Zendesk's helpfulness, nothing could be more authentic than their decision to focus on Airbnb's service in such great detail.
Key Learnings from the Zendesk Case Study Example
- Include images of your client’s offerings — not necessarily of the service or product you provided. Notice how Zendesk doesn’t include screenshots of its product.
- Include a call-to-action right at the beginning of the case study. Zendesk gives you two options: to find a solution or start a trial.
24. " Biobot Customer Success Story: Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida ," by Biobot
Like some of the other top examples in this list, Biobot opens its case study with a quote from its client, which captures the value proposition of working with Biobot. It mentions the COVID pandemic and goes into detail about the challenges the client faced during this time.
This case study is structured more like a news article than a traditional case study. This format can work in more formal industries where decision-makers need to see in-depth information about the case. Be sure to test different methods and measure engagement .
Key Learnings from the Biobot Case Study Example
- Mention environmental, public health, or economic emergencies and how you helped your client get past such difficult times.
- Feel free to write the case study like a normal blog post, but be sure to test different methods to find the one that best works for you.
25. " Discovering Cost Savings With Efficient Decision Making ," by Gartner
You don't always need a ton of text or a video to convey your message — sometimes, you just need a few paragraphs and bullet points. Gartner does a fantastic job of quickly providing the fundamental statistics a potential customer would need to know, without boggling down their readers with dense paragraphs. The case study closes with a shaded box that summarizes the impact that Gartner had on its client. It includes a quote and a call-to-action to "Learn More."
Key Learnings from the Gartner Case Study Example
- Feel free to keep the case study short.
- Include a call-to-action at the bottom that takes the reader to a page that most relates to them.
26. " Bringing an Operator to the Game ," by Redapt
This case study example by Redapt is another great demonstration of the power of summarizing your case study’s takeaways right at the start of the study. Redapt includes three easy-to-scan columns: "The problem," "the solution," and "the outcome." But its most notable feature is a section titled "Moment of clarity," which shows why this particular project was difficult or challenging.
The section is shaded in green, making it impossible to miss. Redapt does the same thing for each case study. In the same way, you should highlight the "turning point" for both you and your client when you were working toward a solution.
Key Learnings from the Redapt Case Study Example
- Highlight the turning point for both you and your client during the solution-seeking process.
- Use the same structure (including the same headings) for your case studies to make them easy to scan and read.
27. " Virtual Call Center Sees 300% Boost In Contact Rate ," by Convoso
Convoso’s PDF case study for Digital Market Media immediately mentions the results that the client achieved and takes advantage of white space. On the second page, the case study presents more influential results. It’s colorful and engaging and closes with a spread that prompts readers to request a demo.
Key Learnings from the Convoso Case Study Example
- List the results of your work right at the beginning of the case study.
- Use color to differentiate your case study from others. Convoso’s example is one of the most colorful ones on this list.
28. " Ensuring quality of service during a pandemic ," by Ericsson
Ericsson’s case study page for Orange Spain is an excellent example of using diverse written and visual media — such as videos, graphs, and quotes — to showcase the success a client experienced. Throughout the case study, Ericsson provides links to product and service pages users might find relevant as they’re reading the study.
For instance, under the heading "Preloaded with the power of automation," Ericsson mentions its Ericsson Operations Engine product, then links to that product page. It closes the case study with a link to another product page.
Key Learnings from the Ericsson Case Study Example
- Link to product pages throughout the case study so that readers can learn more about the solution you offer.
- Use multimedia to engage users as they read the case study.
Start creating your case study.
Now that you've got a great list of examples of case studies, think about a topic you'd like to write about that highlights your company or work you did with a customer.
A customer’s success story is the most persuasive marketing material you could ever create. With a strong portfolio of case studies, you can ensure prospects know why they should give you their business.
Editor's note: This post was originally published in August 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
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15+ Professional Case Study Examples [Design Tips + Templates]
By Alice Corner , Jan 12, 2023
Let me ask you a question: Have you ever bought something — within the last 10 years or so — without reading its reviews or without a recommendation or prior experience of using it?
If the answer is no — or at least, rarely — you get my point.
For businesses selling consumer goods, having raving reviews is a good way to get more customers. The same thing applies to B2B and/or SaaS businesses — but for this type of business, besides regular, short reviews, having a detailed case study can help tremendously.
Case studies are an incredibly effective form of marketing that you can use to help promote your product and plan your marketing strategy effectively. You can also use it as a form of customer analysis or as a sales tool to inspire potential customers.
So what does a case study look like and how can you create one? In this article, I’m going to list over 15 marketing case study examples, case study tips, and case study templates to help you create a case study that converts.
Click to jump ahead:
- What is a Case Study?
- Marketing Case Study Examples
Sales Case Study Examples
Simple case study examples, business case study examples.
- Case Study FAQs
What is a case study?
A case study is a research method to gain a better understanding of a subject or process. Case studies involve in-depth research into a given subject, in order to understand its functionality and successes.
In the context of a business, however, case studies take customer success stories and explore how they use your product to help them achieve their business goals.
As well as being valuable marketing tools, case studies are a good way to evaluate your product as it allows you to objectively examine how others are using it.
It’s also a good way to interview your customers about why they work with you.
Related: What is a Case Study? [+6 Types of Case Studies]
What is a marketing case study?
A marketing case study is a type of marketing where you use your existing customers as an example of what your product or services can achieve. You can also create case studies of internal, successful marketing projects.
Here’s an example of a marketing case study template:
Return to Table of Contents
Marketing case study examples
Marketing case studies are incredibly useful for showing your marketing successes. Every successful marketing campaign relies on influencing a consumer’s behavior, and a great case study can be a great way to spotlight your biggest wins.
In the marketing case study examples below, a variety of designs and techniques to create impactful and effective case studies.
Show off impressive results with a bold marketing case study
Case studies are meant to show off your successes, so make sure you feature your positive results prominently. Using bold and bright colors as well as contrasting shapes, large bold fonts, and simple icons is a great way to highlight your wins.
In well-written case study examples like the one below, the big wins are highlighted on the second page with a bright orange color and are highlighted in circles.
Making the important data stand out is especially important when attracting a prospective customer with marketing case studies.
Use a simple but clear layout in your case study
Using a simple layout in your case study can be incredibly effective, like in the example of a case study below.
Keeping a clean white background, and using slim lines to help separate the sections is an easy way to format your case study.
Making the information clear helps draw attention to the important results, and it helps improve the accessibility of the design .
Business case study examples like this would sit nicely within a larger report, with a consistent layout throughout.
Use visuals and icons to create an engaging and branded business case study
Nobody wants to read pages and pages of text — and that’s why Venngage wants to help you communicate your ideas visually.
Using icons, graphics, photos, or patterns helps create a much more engaging design.
With this Blue Cap case study icons, colors, and impactful pattern designs have been used to create an engaging design that catches your eye.
Use a monochromatic color palette to create a professional and clean case study
Let your research shine by using a monochromatic and minimalistic color palette.
By sticking to one color, and leaving lots of blank space you can ensure your design doesn’t distract a potential customer from your case study content.
In this case study on Polygon Media, the design is simple and professional, and the layout allows the prospective customer to follow the flow of information.
The gradient effect on the left-hand column helps break up the white background and adds an interesting visual effect.
Did you know you can generate an accessible color palette with Venngage? Try our free accessible color palette generator today and create a case study that delivers and looks pleasant to the eye:
Add long term goals in your case study
When creating a case study it’s a great idea to look at both the short term and the long term goals of the company to gain the best understanding possible of the insights they provide.
Short-term goals will be what the company or person hopes to achieve in the next few months, and long-term goals are what the company hopes to achieve in the next few years.
Check out this modern pattern design example of a case study below:
In this case study example, the short and long-term goals are clearly distinguished by light blue boxes and placed side by side so that they are easy to compare.
Use a strong introductory paragraph to outline the overall strategy and goals before outlining the specific short-term and long-term goals to help with clarity.
This strategy can also be handy when creating a consulting case study.
Use data to make concrete points about your sales and successes
When conducting any sort of research stats, facts, and figures are like gold dust (aka, really valuable).
Being able to quantify your findings is important to help understand the information fully. Saying sales increased 10% is much more effective than saying sales increased.
In sales case study examples, like this one, the key data and findings can be presented with icons. This contributes to the potential customer’s better understanding of the report.
They can clearly comprehend the information and it shows that the case study has been well researched.
Use emotive, persuasive, or action based language in your marketing case study
Create a compelling case study by using emotive, persuasive and action-based language when customizing your case study template.
In this well-written case study example, we can see that phrases such as “Results that Speak Volumes” and “Drive Sales” have been used.
Using persuasive language like you would in a blog post. It helps inspire potential customers to take action now.
Keep your potential customers in mind when creating a customer case study for marketing
82% of marketers use case studies in their marketing because it’s such an effective tool to help quickly gain customers’ trust and to showcase the potential of your product.
Why are case studies such an important tool in content marketing?
By writing a case study you’re telling potential customers that they can trust you because you’re showing them that other people do.
Not only that, but if you have a SaaS product, business case studies are a great way to show how other people are effectively using your product in their company.
In this case study, Network is demonstrating how their product has been used by Vortex Co. with great success; instantly showing other potential customers that their tool works and is worth using.
Related: 10+ Case Study Infographic Templates That Convert
Case studies are particularly effective as a sales technique.
A sales case study is like an extended customer testimonial, not only sharing opinions of your product – but showcasing the results you helped your customer achieve.
Make impactful statistics pop in your sales case study
Writing a case study doesn’t mean using text as the only medium for sharing results.
You should use icons to highlight areas of your research that are particularly interesting or relevant, like in this example of a case study:
Icons are a great way to help summarize information quickly and can act as visual cues to help draw the customer’s attention to certain areas of the page.
In some of the business case study examples above, icons are used to represent the impressive areas of growth and are presented in a way that grabs your attention.
Use high contrast shapes and colors to draw attention to key information in your sales case study
Help the key information stand out within your case study by using high contrast shapes and colors.
Use a complementary or contrasting color, or use a shape such as a rectangle or a circle for maximum impact.
This design has used dark blue rectangles to help separate the information and make it easier to read.
Coupled with icons and strong statistics, this information stands out on the page and is easily digestible and retainable for a potential customer.
Less is often more, and this is especially true when it comes to creating designs. Whilst you want to create a professional-looking, well-written and design case study – there’s no need to overcomplicate things.
These simple case study examples show that smart clean designs and informative content can be an effective way to showcase your successes.
Use colors and fonts to create a professional-looking case study
Business case studies shouldn’t be boring. In fact, they should be beautifully and professionally designed.
This means the normal rules of design apply. Use fonts, colors, and icons to create an interesting and visually appealing case study.
In this case study example, we can see how multiple fonts have been used to help differentiate between the headers and content, as well as complementary colors and eye-catching icons.
Whether you’re a B2B or B2C company, business case studies can be a powerful resource to help with your sales, marketing, and even internal departmental awareness.
Business and business management case studies should encompass strategic insights alongside anecdotal and qualitative findings, like in the business case study examples below.
Conduct a B2B case study by researching the company holistically
When it comes to writing a case study, make sure you approach the company holistically and analyze everything from their social media to their sales.
Think about every avenue your product or service has been of use to your case study company, and ask them about the impact this has had on their wider company goals.
In business case study examples like the one above, we can see that the company has been thought about holistically simply by the use of icons.
By combining social media icons with icons that show in-person communication we know that this is a well-researched and thorough case study.
This case study report example could also be used within an annual or end-of-year report.
Highlight the key takeaway from your marketing case study
To create a compelling case study, identify the key takeaways from your research. Use catchy language to sum up this information in a sentence, and present this sentence at the top of your page.
This is “at a glance” information and it allows people to gain a top-level understanding of the content immediately.
You can use a large, bold, contrasting font to help this information stand out from the page and provide interest.
Learn how to choose fonts effectively with our Venngage guide and once you’ve done that.
Upload your fonts and brand colors to Venngage using the My Brand Kit tool and see them automatically applied to your designs.
The heading is the ideal place to put the most impactful information, as this is the first thing that people will read.
In this example, the stat of “Increase[d] lead quality by 90%” is used as the header. It makes customers want to read more to find out how exactly lead quality was increased by such a massive amount.
If you’re conducting an in-person interview, you could highlight a direct quote or insight provided by your interview subject.
Pick out a catchy sentence or phrase, or the key piece of information your interview subject provided and use that as a way to draw a potential customer in.
Use charts to visualize data in your business case studies
Charts are an excellent way to visualize data and to bring statistics and information to life. Charts make information easier to understand and to illustrate trends or patterns.
Making charts is even easier with Venngage.
In this consulting case study example, we can see that a chart has been used to demonstrate the difference in lead value within the Lead Elves case study.
Adding a chart here helps break up the information and add visual value to the case study.
Using charts in your case study can also be useful if you’re creating a project management case study.
You could use a Gantt chart or a project timeline to show how you have managed the project successfully.
Use direct quotes to build trust in your marketing case study
To add an extra layer of authenticity you can include a direct quote from your customer within your case study.
According to research from Nielsen , 92% of people will trust a recommendation from a peer and 70% trust recommendations even if they’re from somebody they don’t know.
So if you have a customer or client who can’t stop singing your praises, make sure you get a direct quote from them and include it in your case study.
You can either lift part of the conversation or interview, or you can specifically request a quote. Make sure to ask for permission before using the quote.
This design uses a bright contrasting speech bubble to show that it includes a direct quote, and helps the quote stand out from the rest of the text.
This will help draw the customer’s attention directly to the quote, in turn influencing them to use your product or service.
Case Study Examples Summary
Once you have created your case study, it’s best practice to update your examples on a regular basis to include up-to-date statistics, data, and information.
You should update your business case study examples often if you are sharing them on your website.
It’s also important that your case study sits within your brand guidelines – find out how Venngage’s My Brand Kit tool can help you create consistently branded case study templates.
Case studies are important marketing tools – but they shouldn’t be the only tool in your toolbox. Content marketing is also a valuable way to earn consumer trust.
Case Study FAQ
Why should you write a case study.
Case studies are an effective marketing technique to engage potential customers and help build trust.
By producing case studies featuring your current clients or customers, you are showcasing how your tool or product can be used. You’re also showing that other people endorse your product.
In addition to being a good way to gather positive testimonials from existing customers, business case studies are good educational resources and can be shared amongst your company or team, and used as a reference for future projects.
How should you write a case study?
To create a great case study, you should think strategically. The first step, before starting your case study research, is to think about what you aim to learn or what you aim to prove.
You might be aiming to learn how a company makes sales or develops a new product. If this is the case, base your questions around this.
You can learn more about writing a case study from our extensive guide.
Some good questions you could ask would be:
- Why do you use our tool or service?
- How often do you use our tool or service?
- What does the process of using our product look like to you?
- If our product didn’t exist, what would you be doing instead?
- What is the number one benefit you’ve found from using our tool?
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We make websites more usable and enjoyable for everybody. These web design case studies illustrate how we're fixing the Internet, one website at a time.
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