Home Graphic designer Behind the Scenes with De La Foye, a Chicago Studio Inspiring Businesses...

Behind the Scenes with De La Foye, a Chicago Studio Inspiring Businesses to Thrive

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It all started when she helped a chef turn a struggling restaurant online. As a result, a failing business has become a resounding success. Denise thought, “If I can help another business owner succeed, I’d be incredibly honored. And since launching her own boutique design studio in 2019, she’s been doing just that.

De La Foye Design Studio describes itself as a place “where companies come to find their inner creative voice when enhancing their brand and online presence“. Denise and her team work with companies around the world to improve their web presence, brand identity and marketing engagement.

Dennis is a Wix expert, and the studio specializes in building premium sites using Wix across a variety of verticals, including restaurants, events, retail, and reservations. He also took advantage X-editor and Bike for multiple customer sites. Comfortable fitness recently stood out among its client websites, supporting the Wix Partner Spotlight for superior functionality.

Here, Denise tells us about the company’s history, its driving vision, and the website building technology she uses to bring clients’ dreams to life.

The story

In the 90s, right out of high school, I learned HTML coding. Then I got a finance degree and was an IT manager for 20 years, so it never really turned into anything. But I’ve always loved design – fashion, visual design, interior design, and more.



At 36, I traveled and spent a month in Bali. My brother Ron contacted me when we were in Seminyak and suggested I visit his friend, Aaron, who owned a restaurant there. So after googling it, I couldn’t find it anywhere online.

Eventually I got there, and Aaron, the owner, was this big, tall, burly Canadian named ‘Moose’. He was a chef and had this beautiful restaurant overlooking a rice field on this very hidden path that no one would ever find, just like his online presence. So I talked to him, and he admitted, “I’m a chef, I don’t know anything about this tech stuff.” And that was it, the start of my web design business.

By then Aaron could no longer support himself and I knew I could help him. So I spent my last week in Bali creating its online presence and, essentially, its future. Three months later, Scratch was the number one restaurant in the neighborhood. Now he has six different concepts, he is married with two children, and he no longer cares about supporting himself.




Vision

This experience touched me because, working in a company, I could never help a person like that. At that time, my role was to coordinate the implementations of large web projects. It didn’t help anyone in particular, and I felt very disappointed and needed a change.

I tried to get IT project manager roles, but I got to the bottom two, and they always chose the other person. It was like the universe was saying, “That’s not what you’re supposed to do.” So I took the plunge and decided to create my own studio. If I could help another person like I helped Aaron, it would be such an honor. And since then, I have never looked back.

Using Wix, I’ve helped businesses increase revenue by over 25% in three months.

It’s so rewarding to compare before and after scans. I can see how much traffic they are getting now, how proud they are of their business, and how invigorated they are with the work I have done for them.

The platform

I started using Wix to build websites the moment I started my business. I had tried using other platforms, but they didn’t give me the “blank canvas” feel I was looking for, and I couldn’t move things where I wanted to move them. So I stuck with Wix because there was no other platform that had the feature I liked.

With Wix, I love how everything works together seamlessly. Automation is awesome: there’s so much you can do. One of my favorite features is the reservation function. It is an easy-to-use scheduling system that allows customers to book services online.

I use it on my own website, as well as ones I create for clients. This means that whenever someone wants to schedule a date with me, I just have to say, “Here’s my link, put some time on my calendar.” And I also appreciate that it goes into my CRM, so I can keep notes on each person if I want. Wix’s CRM capabilities are really great, and it’s one of the things I sell to my clients. I ask them, “Is the calendar app you use capable of giving you all the contact information of those who have submitted meeting requests?”

The work

Comfy Fitness came to me because they liked the way I worked. I have a very right and left brain, so with my experience in IT project management, all my projects are super structured. And with Comfy Fitness, in particular, they had to be involved because there were a lot of decisions that I wasn’t going to make on my own.




Comfy Fitness had a person in California doing all of their branding, and admittedly, I was a bit overwhelmed at first because there were so many colors. I sat down with all the colors to figure out how to create movement. It was something they were really passionate about. As a fitness company, it’s all about movement.

Once I got started, Editor X, a fully responsive website building platform designed especially for designers and agencies, gave me new ways to move around website elements , and I had so much fun. I could meet all their needs, and this is the biggest project I’ve done on Editor X to date.”

It was a very collaborative project with the women who run Comfy Fitness. They were great: very methodical, very patient. Their site has a lot of features, which challenged me in many ways, but it’s the most rewarding to build and makes me a better designer, thinking more outside the box and strategically.

I love and appreciate that Comfy Fitness is constantly posting on their forum and interacting with their community. They are very committed to their business. Some people create a website and forget its importance, but Comfy Fitness is very proactive.

It was also great to see their reaction when they first saw the website, they were super excited and their feedback was so gratifying.




Culture

I have a great team with specialist contractors that I connect with, as well as Geoff, a talented graphic designer, who creates a lot of the custom logos that we work on with some of our clients, as well as artwork and media for brand of all types. Angela, my data analytics guru, creates dashboards on Data Studio and helps educate people on how this insight can help their business grow. I also work with several writers, photographers, videographers, social media experts and marketers.

If I could pick a dream project, I’d love to design any lawyer’s website because it could use some life, and it’s such a competitive environment. Especially in Chicago, there are a million independent attorneys, and all of their websites are so clunky and overwhelming. They don’t speak to the average person. They talk to people who understand their language, who are nobody unless they have studied law!

I think I have a lot of impact with the companies I work with: they trust me to do what I do.