That’s how LaunchDM creator and founder Rob Wolf refers to the Wilson project. Perhaps any time someone throws out words like multi-site platform, DNS, or cascading style sheet in everyday conversation it sounds a bit techie.
Call it whatever you like…we specialize in turning blank stares into standing ovations when it comes to functional and intuitive website design. The allure of blending data and function to create an elegant experience was the overarching theme behind-the-scenes at the LaunchDM studio, as we engineered the foundation for a robust and ambitious multi-site environment that delivers exceptional practicality for everyone who uses it; that’s what makes us thrive.
Website architecture goes far beyond just the UI/UX designer and the IA guys (those responsible for the structural design of organizing and labeling). Planning for a user community of over 5,900 families encompasses an entire infrastructure…from the development interface, to the user experience, to the visual presentation. Here’s a sneak peak at our process.
We incorporated a solid understanding of usability and digital marketing technologies from logical thinking and attention to detail to compelling imagery and relevant deliverables for a wide array of audiences. Each component of a website design needs to be well planned and laser focused. Sound complex? Our team has been committed to delivering unparalleled creativity and expertise in an increasingly complex media world for nearly two decades. We are a small and agile team with deep resources which allow us to deliver the efficiency of a large team without losing the passion and perfection that make us unique.
If there is a creative solution to a media challenge, we’ll find it.
Our design team enjoyed bringing a decades’ old website into the modern age by utilizing full-width images and contemporary typography. The old website was clunky, hard to navigate, and not visually appealing. Our goal was to design easy-to-read and consistent layouts to help cut down on the clutter and make everything look more standardized. Good UI/UX is all about the user knowing where to go to find what they need, then presenting it in a fashion that is consistent and beautiful. Our team pushed the envelope on layout and responsive technologies. It’s not your standard “grid” and it works on all screens. We also created a seamless transition between the different micro-sites for each school. No matter what page you’re viewing within the entire infrastructure, you know what building within the district you’re viewing. Users always have access to social links and a robust search functionality, and teachers can easily access their email account from anywhere.
- Open source, multi-site platform (currently this type of development powers more than 28% of the web)
- Easy to use Content Management System: provides full control to the website administrators
- Multisite: the ability to easily manage multiple sites in one area, with shared users, plugins, & themes
- Search Engine Optimization: pages now have title tags, meta descriptions, and a clear URL structure
- Over 650+ 301 Redirects
- Faculty Pages: created a structure to easily manage faculty to appear in a directory, department, or team pages
- Courses: the district can easily manage middle and high school program of study courses throughout their websites
- Elastic Search: a more robust search for the website than the out of the box options. Fast searches. Data-collection across all sites, with search results showing for every site on the results page
The Content Migration included:
- School District: 222 Pages | 237 Courses
- Cornwall: 39 Pages | 50 Faculty
- Green Valley: 36 Pages | 46 Faculty
- Shiloh Hills: 41 Pages | 50 Faculty
- Spring Ridge: 43 Pages | 47 Faculty
- Whitfield: 36 Pages | 53 Faculty
- Southern: 40 Pages | 54 Faculty
- West: 44 Pages | 59 Faculty
- High School: 102 Pages | 123 Faculty
- TOTAL: 603 Pages | 237 Courses | 482 Faculty
We wanted to create something different than the standard school district website. A large percentage of schools in the US (including colleges and universities) use the same base for their website; it’s extremely difficult to navigate both for the end-user (students, parents, and community members) as well as the administrators of the website. This option is more robust, yet easier to use for everyone. When it comes to a school website, the user is the most important; we wanted to make it a better feeling, better working, and better looking website than any other school website out there.
We are extremely proud of the strategy and planning that occurred between our team and the Wilson School District Administration team in collaboration for this project. Throughout the process there were many meetings and conference calls; there were board presentations and technological frustrations, but most importantly, there was discovery, inspiration, and creative alliances designed to benefit the greater good of the community we both serve. Through and through, the project was testament to the positive impact we all collectively make, right here in our local neighborhoods.