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March 25, 2014

New Launch: Automatic Pool Covers

March 25, 2014

Last week, Automatic Pool Covers launched their brand new website! 

In 1978, Automatic Pool Covers, Inc. (APC) began distributing pool covers within the industry. Since then, they’ve grown to become the industry leader in manufacturing and distributing top-of-the-line automatic pool covers. As their brand expanded all over the world throughout the years, their online presence couldn’t really keep up with their progress. While APC’s professionalism, experience, and expertise was apparent in their customer service and business footprint, their website didn’t accurately represent their brand. APC’s team trusted SmallBox to create a website that would represent them well.

The Key Was Collaborating with APC’s Great Team

One of SmallBox’s core values is “Collaboration.” We love collaborating, watching others collaborate, and champion all forms of collaboration. Collaborating about how to make subject matter like pool covers come to life was certainly a challenge – one that we were excited about! 

Our first step, as with any client we engage with, was to truly understand the essence of APC – who they are, what their goals are, who their customers think they are, and how they provide industry-leading products to homeowners and their distribution partners. So we started by collaborating with the APC team to create audience personas for their core audiences. We also mapped out their business goals and projections. We sought their opinions on various imagery they liked, as well as websites they didn’t like. Websites that showcased a certain lifestyle with images, color, and brightness inspired the team. This helped us get a clear picture of how we could best represent APC’s brand according to each persona’s expectation of a pool cover manufacturer.

Vision for the Website

At first glance, pool covers themselves aren’t necessarily sexy. But owning a pool in your backyard is a reflection of a lifestyle. It’s a getaway. It’s a “vacation in your backyard.” So we wanted to really represent APC by featuring some of their installations and products “in the wild.” Because APC has two key audiences (homeowners and dealers/partners), it was imperative to provide content that could help inform both. On one hand, homeowners don’t want a bunch of technical industry-speak. They want to see what products are available, and what colors they can select from. On the other, color selection isn’t as important to dealers. They need product specifications, features and technical information about products. Both sets of info are equally important. 

So we essentially came to the conclusion to “divide” the website into two paths - both represented by quality visuals and a “home page” feel. The purpose of the website, in general, is to inform folks about the quality and selection of APC products. Additionally, we wanted to give users the ability to easily browse products, view images and color options. We believe we accomplished this with each product page and the color selection tool. 

Site Features

Every product page has the technical specs that are important to dealers, and large images for homeowners. It’s easy to browse the products by clicking left or right in the top banners. Similarly, the select-a-color tool is easy for homeowners to navigate if they want to get a snapshot of what they can expect when an APC cover is placed on their pool in any of the available colors. 


Throughout the entire process, APC’s team was brought in to provide their ideas, guidance, and expertise. Our early collaborative sessions and Discovery process allowed for no surprises. Similarly, we met with APC’s team right before website launch to collaboratively comb the site to make sure it functioned exactly as intended. 

Now that the site has launched, Automatic Pool Covers is confident that their website represents the brand accurately. They’ve got a tool that will help them educate their audiences on all that’s possible and available for pools. 

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