I launched Zavanak.com in October 2019, using a basic WordPress theme. It worked well enough from a functional standpoint, and was an easy way into creating a website. But the user interface was poor. Lots of the screen was taken up with pointless white space. You had to do lots of scrolling to find anything. Even so, the site picked up enough visitors to fulfil my early ambitions. By early 2021 I was ready to give the site a serious makeover and take it to the next level.
Luckily there is an excellent web design house in my home town of Southport. Blue Cow Digital. I came across them at a local business event, and I approached them about revamping Zavanak.com. The work they have done has transformed a rather amateurish first effort into a really professional website.
Some people might say I should have gone to an online web design service, which would certainly have been cheaper. However, it became clear as we worked on the new site that this would not have been the right route. There was a lot of communication, experimentation and trying out ideas before we got to the final version. And that level of customer interaction would be tricky when quick turn round and low price are the priorities.
Zavanak.com is not typical of the kinds of website development houses normally tackle. Usually they are either online brochures, with limited content, or e-commerce sites displaying what’s for sale, and handling transactions. This site is a library, where the primary emphasis is on content. It is arranged around a number of theme areas. Within each of these is a lot of material. The architecture and look of the site had to reflect that.
Blue Cow will also be maintaining the new site. This takes away the headache of keeping up with various site registrations. It also means it is kept at the optimum standard for performance and security. They also added a few really useful tools to help me make the site as accessible, readable and findable as possible. Most visitors come straight to content within the site via search engines. So it will be much easier to optimise the site performance in that area.
There is still plenty of room for refinement. I shall be using those tools from Blue Cow to make the site more and more useful, as well as push up visitor numbers. Another beauty of the new design is that it is inherently flexible. So the themes and material within the site can evolve without major modifications.
Big thanks then to Blue Cow Digital. And especially Simon Reed, the designer who worked so hard (and so patiently!) to create a new site I am really pleased with. To find out more about Blue Cow go to Blue Cow Digital
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