Drew Christiano

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NRG Case Study

The team at Think Company was tapped to simplify the way NRG’s customers purchased electricty and natural gas plans through their website.


Sr. Experience Designer at Think Company

April 2016 – June 2016


NRG, an energy supply company servicing customers in the northeast United States, approached Think Company to help simplify the purchase experience for their electric and gas plans. Through a combination of making plan options easier to understand and shortening the sales funnel, we were able to design a solution that would increase conversions on NRG's residential website.

My Roles

As lead visual designer, I worked closely with our UX team to identify key moments and potential customer pain points throughout the learn/buy journey. After collecting our findings and creating an end-to-end user flow for selecting and choosing electric/gas plans, I worked to design the interface as an extension of NRG’s existing design language, doing a light brand refresh of their residential website in the process.

Our Challenges

Because NRG’s offerings depend on region, our first challenge was to accurately determine a prospective customer’s location. We explored two paths to accomplish this: browser detection, which requires user permission, and IP filtering, which isn't as targeted or reliable as we would have liked. Location proved to be our biggest challenge simply because of the different scenarios in which we could offer relevant information—we wanted a customer making informed purchasing decisions as early as possible.

Where things grew complicated was the interplay between electric and gas offerings, and the dependencies they each had on location. Finding the right time to ask the customer for input, and the different paths they could go down with or without that information, was a small, but significant piece of making it easier for NRG’s customers to find and purchase their energy plans.

In the end, we decided to default to IP filtering to present more generalized regional offerings, then in the event that region had competing plans, ask the customer to input their zip code. This allowed customers to get a high-level overview of their options right away, helping them understand the plans and leading to more informed, higher-intent decisions sooner.

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