a public library  website redesign website redesign <ul><li>Sarah Houghton-Jan </li></ul><ul><li>Digital Futures Manager, ...
our current website
problems we’re solving <ul><li>1 website for 2 libraries </li></ul><ul><li>public library users felt ripped off </li></ul>...
problems we encountered while solving those <ul><li>unrealistic admin expectations </li></ul><ul><li>1 year long RFP & con...
lessons learned
redesign planning <ul><li>stakeholders identify org. goals </li></ul><ul><li>techies, designers, and information architect...
staff & customer involvement <ul><li>initial satisfaction surveys for both </li></ul><ul><li>card-sorting testing for cust...
usability <ul><li>identify who you are serving </li></ul><ul><li>focus on the few things you do well </li></ul><ul><li>tel...
accessibility <ul><li>start simple </li></ul><ul><li>Basic tools: JAWS, WAVE, browser emulators, OS emulators </li></ul><u...
communication <ul><li>blogs for staff & customers with email & RSS updates </li></ul><ul><li>ask for customer & staff inpu...
project management <ul><li>set deadlines for everything </li></ul><ul><li>hold people accountable </li></ul><ul><li>one pe...
launch techniques <ul><li>phased-in launch (notices, pre-testing) </li></ul><ul><li>beta + feedback </li></ul><ul><li>= 1....
5 things to avoid <ul><li>try to be fancy when your brain says “no” </li></ul><ul><li>allow consultants to push you around...
5 things you must do <ul><li>show your ego to the door </li></ul><ul><li>take risks </li></ul><ul><li>document everything ...
one more time...
our current website
our new website
Questions? <ul><li>Sarah Houghton-Jan </li></ul><ul><li>web: LibrarianInBlack.net </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter: @TheLiB </li>...
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CIL2010: Website Redesign: A Public Library Website Redesign: (aka The Trip to Hades & Back)

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These are the slides from my website design presentation at Computers in Libraries 2010. I spoke about our library’s website redesign, which is still in process, and my recommendations and best practices for people managing or taking part in a website redesign process.

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CIL2010: Website Redesign: A Public Library Website Redesign: (aka The Trip to Hades & Back)

  1. 1. a public library website redesign website redesign <ul><li>Sarah Houghton-Jan </li></ul><ul><li>Digital Futures Manager, San Jose Public Library </li></ul><ul><li>Author, LibrarianInBlack.net </li></ul>
  2. 2. our current website
  3. 3. problems we’re solving <ul><li>1 website for 2 libraries </li></ul><ul><li>public library users felt ripped off </li></ul><ul><li>7 year-old design, content, and CMS </li></ul><ul><li>webmaster as gatekeeper = disconnected staff </li></ul><ul><li>ADA requirements cumbersome in existing environment </li></ul>
  4. 4. problems we encountered while solving those <ul><li>unrealistic admin expectations </li></ul><ul><li>1 year long RFP & contract process </li></ul><ul><li>incompetent graphic designers </li></ul><ul><li>6 months of lost time due to </li></ul><ul><li>lost momentum </li></ul><ul><li>merged web team working on 3 websites </li></ul>
  5. 5. lessons learned
  6. 6. redesign planning <ul><li>stakeholders identify org. goals </li></ul><ul><li>techies, designers, and information architects identify how to meet them </li></ul><ul><li>identify your givens </li></ul><ul><li>use planning software (BaseCamp, dotproject) </li></ul><ul><li>double the estimated timeline </li></ul>
  7. 7. staff & customer involvement <ul><li>initial satisfaction surveys for both </li></ul><ul><li>card-sorting testing for customers early on </li></ul><ul><li>staff focus groups </li></ul><ul><li>mock-up task testing for customers </li></ul><ul><li>transparency to staff and customers </li></ul>
  8. 8. usability <ul><li>identify who you are serving </li></ul><ul><li>focus on the few things you do well </li></ul><ul><li>tell stories of what your users want </li></ul><ul><li>look for friction points </li></ul><ul><li>who is the site for again? </li></ul>
  9. 9. accessibility <ul><li>start simple </li></ul><ul><li>Basic tools: JAWS, WAVE, browser emulators, OS emulators </li></ul><ul><li>Firefox tools: Firesizer, Firefox Accessibility Extension, HTML Validator, Web Developer Extension, WCAG Contrast Checker </li></ul>
  10. 10. communication <ul><li>blogs for staff & customers with email & RSS updates </li></ul><ul><li>ask for customer & staff input (+ use it) </li></ul><ul><li>recruit usability testing participants from among “the angry folk” </li></ul>
  11. 11. project management <ul><li>set deadlines for everything </li></ul><ul><li>hold people accountable </li></ul><ul><li>one person should be in charge of tracking </li></ul><ul><li>give periodic updates to staff/managers </li></ul><ul><li>spend the most time on IA and design </li></ul><ul><li>keep things moving no matter what </li></ul><ul><li>celebrate small victories </li></ul>
  12. 12. launch techniques <ul><li>phased-in launch (notices, pre-testing) </li></ul><ul><li>beta + feedback </li></ul><ul><li>= 1.0 + feedback </li></ul><ul><li>= 1.1 + feedback (and so on) </li></ul><ul><li>provide brief online & printable orientation </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>if it takes >1 page, start over </li></ul></ul></ul>
  13. 13. 5 things to avoid <ul><li>try to be fancy when your brain says “no” </li></ul><ul><li>allow consultants to push you around </li></ul><ul><li>have more than one project manager </li></ul><ul><li>stifle creativity </li></ul><ul><li>re-invent some wheels </li></ul>
  14. 14. 5 things you must do <ul><li>show your ego to the door </li></ul><ul><li>take risks </li></ul><ul><li>document everything </li></ul><ul><li>research everything </li></ul><ul><li>talk to your users continuously </li></ul>
  15. 15. one more time...
  16. 16. our current website
  17. 17. our new website
  18. 18. Questions? <ul><li>Sarah Houghton-Jan </li></ul><ul><li>web: LibrarianInBlack.net </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter: @TheLiB </li></ul><ul><li>Facebook: Facebook.com/LibrarianInBlack </li></ul><ul><li>IM: LibrarianInBlack </li></ul><ul><li>Skype: LibrarianInBlack </li></ul><ul><li>email: [email_address] </li></ul>

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