Marketing Rebranding and face lift

Recently,, the largest online auctioning web site in Romania, came out with a new brand imagery, as well as with a new website design (after 8 years, it was due to come in a form or another). While the new web site design (well, part of it at least) looks much cleaner and much more customer oriented ( dropped the advertising banner space from their site with this occasion), the whole rebranding process was not done entirely and unfortunately it shows.

[![ logo before and after rebranding]( "okazii-before-after")]( logo before and after rebranding
The new logo looks much more modern and less crowded with visual elements not included in the typeface itslef, making it more clear and easier to read (the dart in the old logo was almost never used as a branding element outside the logo, at least not in the past couple of years). While the initial logo color set restricted in a way the brand’s colors to orange, black and blue, the current logo is introducing in a subtle way a larger color palette (the red, blue and green elements of the O letter).

However, although I like the current logo more than the previous one, I think they made one big mistake with the rebranding. They dropped the capital OK from their brand, which, in my opinion, is one of the most widely recognized symbol for approval (at least in non English native countries), mostly used in expressions such as “OK, that’s good” (source: Wikipedia). I have to give them the benefit of doubt, though, since OK can also be used in expressions that imply mediocrity, such as “The concert was OK” or “I think I did OK in the exams” (source: Wikipedia).

While we can agree that the rebranding part of in terms of logo and front page redesign went quite OK (see what I did there?), the whole process was kind of faulty. The main problem with it is the fact that they only supported the rebranding by a partial web site face lift. A couple of weeks after the actual rebranding went live, a lot of other parts of the site are still unchanged, generating a big visual discrepancy and thus a lack of visual connection between various parts of the site for its visitors.

[![ shops now and if they would have been rebranded]( "okazii-shops")]( Shops now and how it would have looked like if rebranded as well
I believe that the negative visual impact would have been lessened if at least the major parts of the site would have been rebranded as well (the [Okazii Shops]( "Okazii Shops") and the internal user interface), in order to preserve the visual impact throughout the customer’s main path through the site. I also believe that these sections could have been rebranded quite easily, since it only took me 5 minutes to create the “rebranded” Okazii Shops logo.

However, despite the shortcomings of the rebranding and face lifting process, I am glad that is still up and in good shape, showing strong determination to focus on its customers rather than outside revenue streams (quite sizeable at 30%, as they recently declared to the press – The continuous developments introduced by the project team this year and their promises to do so in the future as well shows that they’re here to stay firm in their number one position in the Romanian online auctioning market.

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