AEM Migration

In a perfect world I build the exact car I want and get a price. It's rare to get a car with all the options you wanted.


I just want to be able to easily download a brochure, not submit my email?


I've already done my research, it should be this price for this.



Lincoln Motor Company


Lincoln Motor Company website AEM migration


Sr. UX Designer



Project Statement

The 2016 Lincoln Motor Company website existed on a legacy platform and needed to be migrated to the AEM (Adobe Experience Manager) platform.


The initial goal was to migrate the existing site to the AEM platform. However, when I conducted an initial audit I discovered key usability issues. Migrating the site as requested without improving the user experience would have simply carried over these issues. I suggested to the larger team we address these shortcomings and improve the overall experience. Based on an initial presentation of some of the challenges discovered, the team agreed this was the best way forward.

Methodology and Process

The process for most of my projects is to first gain a clear understanding of the user, industry, and what the team and the client have defined as the project’s goals. This understanding is then tested against several methods of validation to establish a clear strategy, workflow, and set of processes to better guide the project’s outcome. Below are 4 buckets that represent my workflow process from start to deliverables while on the project.

1. Research

Onboarding and research into the Lincoln brand, their competitive set and the two specific user groups of the Lincoln website experience, shoppers and owners. Later research came from several usability studies, user interviews (observer), vendor demos and Hudson Rouge web analysts.

2. Develop Insights

Insights for internal team work and client presentations were gathered by working closely with the Hudson Rouge web analysts and strategists (qualitative and quantitative data) in addition to ones gathered from the previous research step.

3. Develop UX | UI Recommendations

After the research and insights informed what solutions the pages would need or problems sets to focus on (sometimes both) I started the process of job stories (JTBD), user flows, low fidelity sketches and other, mainly internal facing UX prep work.

4. Deliver Assets

Once the wireframes, user stories and other deliverables had gone through any rounds of internal changes and then received final approval they were placed on a server and shared with the project manager for delivery to the design team for execution.

Identifying Our Challenges

When the website was redesigned in early 2016 (prior to me joining the team), it unfortunately didn’t start with the benefit of an audit and thorough UX process.

This meant while mapping older pages to the new AEM experience we now had a larger than anticipated list of problem sets, bugs and future feature requests.  A “problem set” in the context of this project is defined as issues with user flows, other UX , UI, a page feature, functionality or AEM component functionality.  We also had instances where what we envisioned for the UX, interaction design, UI or all of the aforementioned wasn’t possible with the out of the box component functionality. Here are some of the areas of the experience I gave extra focus to due to finding problems sets within them that had the highest impacts to the site experience. They were:

  • Overall Navigation
  • Brochures, Owners Manuals & Guides
  • Concierge
  • My Profile
  • Shopping Planner

How were these sections chosen?

  • Highest impact to the user experience as per identified industry metrics
  • Part of existing experience and AEM migration
  • High gain, low effort opportunities
  • Substantiated with qualitative and quantitative data
  • Solution did not previously exist and was needed

Below are a few sample areas of the Navigation and Brochures, Owners Manuals & Guides work shared with Hudson Rouge and the Lincoln client.

Navigational challenges

A. Main Navigation

  • Does not have drop down menus so the user has to travel farther down the page to the site map for access to familiar sections within an automotive shopping experience
  • There is no language picker, only in the footer
  • Shop” is not an obvious replacement for “Shopping Tools“. Represents something else in shoppers mental model
  • Build & Price should be in the main navigation
  • Consider other language suggestions such as changing “Dealer” to “Retailer” etc

B. VHP (Vehicle Home Page) Navigation

  • Does not allow a user to immediately download a brochure (high KBA) for the vehicle
  • The footer on the VHP inherits the nameplates sub-navigation in place of the full Lincoln model list, but should not
  • A “Compare” option in the nameplate sub-nav drop down menu doesn’t exist

C. Footer

  • Has Brochures, Owners Manuals & Guides as one use case, under one footer bucket
  • Language” switches the site into the Spanish version without confirmation or notification to the user
  •  Some sections such as “Finance” and “Owners” drive to legacy experience

Early mouseflow and iPerception tests strongly suggests users are interacting with the footer as they would a traditional navigation with drop down menus at a much higher frequency than normal.

Navigation – Comparative Analysis

The Net-A-Porter 2017 online experience
Land Rover and BMW 2017

Navigation – Exploration

Main Navigation Considerations

  • Add drop down menus in the main navigation per data and insights
  • Consider a visual gallery for the vehicles drop down sub nav if drop downs are adopted
  • Per tests, change “Shop” back to “Shopping tools
  • Move “Build & Price” out of the Shopping Tools sub-navigation to a more obvious top level space in the main nav
  • Consider other language changes and conducting a usability study and sprint for “Retailers” vs “Dealerships

Other considerations:

  • Add language dialog confirming the user wants to switch to the Spanish version. If a drop down, no dialog is needed
  • Simplify Concierge landing page
  • Remove the need to register on the Concierge landing page
  • Discuss using the “my profile” budget for Concierge, Black Label or other initiatives if removed

See other recommendations.

Brochures, Manuals & Guides

When I conducted the audit of the experience post and pre – launch of the initial AEM experience, one area of focus was how the experience handled Brochures, Owners Manuals & Guides. This turned out to be a feature particularly problematic to the shopper and owner experience.

A. Download a brochure on VHP (High KBA)

  • Brochures is not a direct download like the 10+ other brands in the audit

B. Brochure, Owners Manuals & Guides

  • Owners would not think to find their “Owners manuals & guides” on the shopping experience and search for it on, the owners destination of the Lincoln experience. There is a large amount of user feedback (qualitative data) in addition to our own internal tests that have validated this pain point
Brochure Accessibility Comparative Chart and Scoring
Lincoln Brochure user flow vs industry norm

Brochures, Manuals & Guides: Solutions

User Story / Job To Be Done
Improved mobile brochures wireframe
Job To Be Done – Improved User Flow
Improved desktop brochure wireframe

Other AEM Solutions

In addition to the work on the problem sets and other areas of the Lincoln brand, here are a few of the other UX deliverables and solutions for the AEM migration effort.


Since having left the UX work at Hudson Rouge I have seen many of the recommendations I put forth (with the help of an amazing team!) but were in doubt due to budgetary reasons or others make their way onto the live site. You can view the work at