M&S X Factor

Making a fashion statement with The X Factor

M&S is a British retailer with both in-store and online digital experiences. They focus on their own label businesses, including Food, Clothing & Home. I worked with M&S while they sponsored The X Factor (a British television music competition).

The challenge

The challenge was to design and build magazine-style website pages that would promote M&S outfits and accessories on a weekly basis. In return, this would help boost sales until The X Factor’s finale. I had a weekly timeframe, limited photographic assets and I would have to make supporting theme related assets from scratch.

Our high level goals were to:

  • Increase clothing sales.
  • Promote the M&S brand.
  • Engage customers.

My role

Each week I would design and code a magazine-style layout that would coincide with the weekly theme from The X Factor. Customers would be able to see outfits and accessories that would lead to product pages for purchase. I worked with M&S’ Creative Director, Marketing Team and their In-House Development Team.


Scope and constraints

Each week the M&S Marketing Team would recommend a line-up of outfits with accessories that reflected the weekly X Factor theme. The X Factor themes were not known in advance so there was minimal time for any pre-work. Any research and design work would need to be done during the same week to meet the weekly deadline.


One week to design and build

I had one-week to design and code The X Factor layouts with limited assets. Each week I was given photographs of some of The X Factor contestants and product shots from the Marketing Team. Any design elements were bespoke and made during the same week. Sometimes online products would become out-of-stock so there were regular last minute changes to design layouts.


We need more stock!

We underestimated the popularity of the products that were being promoted, which was great for M&S’ revenue but bad for customers. In future we would need more products available in the warehouse to avoid customer disappointment in future promotions.