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Category - PhatDeals News

October 4, 2009

Redesigning PhatDeals, Part I: The Right Feel

Filed under: PhatDeals beta,User Experience — Ruben Infante @ 11:14 am


Hello everyone. I am Ruben Infante, Director of User Experience at PhatDeals. In this three-part series, I will discuss the thoughts and processes behind putting together a complete site redesign.

For a good portion of the last year I have been busy putting together what is now the public beta of PhatDeals 1.0. I hope you are all enjoying the new layout, but I wanted to shed some light on what happened behind-the-scenes to get everything up and running. Taking the strengths of the previous site and addressing its potential downfalls, while giving everything a new coat of paint can be slightly complicated. Especially considering that we wanted to keep a large portion of the infrastructure in place and simply build around it. This endeavor was going to take some planning in order to ensure that I had the right idea of where the site needed to go.


July 29, 2009

Status Update- Hello Mr. Washington.

Filed under: New Phat Deals,PhatDeals News,Startups — aaron @ 11:43 pm

Hello everyone.

I posted the last entry this past April. To say that PhatDeals has seen much in the way of growth and change since then would be an understatement.  Please allow me to explain.

Jon and I started PhatDeals in September of 2007, when I still had 2 years of school left here at UCSB before earning my degree. This past June, I finally graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering and an Emphasis in Technology Management from UC Santa Barbara. Since then, we here at PhatDeals have been working diligently to make our service as wonderful as possible for our business clients and community members.

Now that I have graduated and gone full time with PhatDeals, we now find ourselves in an exciting state of transition. Though PhatDeals began in September 2007, we have really only gotten through the prototype and alpha forms of the site. The design and functionality of the site as it now stands is about 9 months old. In approximately 7 weeks, we’ll be releasing PhatDeals beta, our first commercially viable version of the site. Here’s a fun little trip down memory lane, to give an idea of where we’ve come from and the iterations that have followed.

The Very First Prototype of PhatDeals:

This was the first prototype of the site Jon built after our first “executive business meeting” on a couch on Del Playa road in Isla Vista in Summer 2007. As you can see, there’s a lot of whitespace, it’s fairly intuitive, and our logo is pretty confusing. To me, the logo ended up looking like we were business consultants or something of that nature. But.. it was a logo, and that puppy got us through the first 9 months, and the UCSB Technology Management Program’s new venture competition in 2008. Btw, you can see a picture of yours-truly in the red shirt, and Dan in the blue shirt at the about 3/4 down that page:

New Venture Fair 2008

As a sidenote, that display is actually sitting in my living room right now, serving as a daily reminder of where we’ve come from and where we want to go. Here’s that!


Note how awesome our “Expasion” Plan was. That actually wasn’t pointed out to us until the very last judge in the competition mentioned it.

Also, you can see in the right panel, under “PhatDeals 2.0” a taste of where we saw ourselves going. Here are some of the mockups from that panel:



In May 2008 we came to a new design for the logo and overall look of the site, courtesy of a very talented designer we met via an ad we took out on craigslist. Here’s what that led to initially:


And we’ve been building upon that since then. If you look at the current site, it’s basically a more layered version of this. We’ll be releasing a new version of the PhatDeals site, which we’re calling PhatDeals beta, in mid-late September as our first commercial product. We’ll devote a whole entire entry to the new design at a later date, likely with some input from Ruben.

So.. that brings us to Mr. Washington. We’ve just printed out 1000 of the PhatDeals Summer 2009 coupon books, for which we charged businesses on a per-coupon basis to be in the book. I give you, the first fruit of almost 2 years of our labor:


And here’s some pictures of the coupon books:

This one’s probably my favorite:

Well, that’s most of what we’ve been up to. We’ve got quite a few tricks up our sleeves though, so watch out for those in the coming weeks and months ahead.


February 24, 2009

New Team Members, New Deals

Filed under: Entrepreneurship,New Phat Deals,Our Team,PhatDeals News — aaron @ 2:55 am

Hello everyone. I have exciting news. PhatDeals has been moving along at a really pleasant pace. Although the team has obligations with work and school, we have been working diligently here at PhatDeals to bring you the Phattest deals west of the Mississippi.

Behind the scenes, we’ve been working diligently to build a team robust enough to weather the oncoming storm of development, expansion and headaches that will undoubtedly meet us in the next several months of expanding our company. In the last month we brought on two new team members- Ruben Infante and Sean Drazich. Please allow me to introduce you to them.

Here’s Ruben: