Great things can grow organically from small beginnings. Sometimes. So too can complex problems.
GiGL’s website had grown from a simple site, designed around the needs of the single project that had funded its initial creation, into an unwieldy and complicated leviathan. It was a creature of semi-epic proportions, combining hidden gems of information with a technical foundation that induced frequent bouts of apoplexy in the staff tasked with managing it.
Our first task was to step back from what was there and review what was needed. We had to look afresh at the context – to understand the website’s audience – who needed to know what and what we wanted them to do with that information.
While we tackled the structure and content and spent time making the website look pretty and friendly, we knew that the long-term success of the site was dependent on a solid architecture. The new site is built using WordPress, the open source software that, thanks to the thousands of programmers that comprise the WordPress community, has become the most-used content management system on the Internet today.
The new website is clean and deceptively simple. Much of our time has been spent on what lies beneath the surface – on creating a site that is easy to update and where new content magically appears, perfectly formatted, in the right location. By hard coding a lot of functionality into the back end of the site, we were able to keep the administration area uncluttered and make it easy for GiGL’s staff to navigate.