The last time we redesigned the Jewett City Savings Bank website was 2011. And while that doesn’t feel very long ago, we can all agree when it comes to websites, at a time when corporate websites have an average lifespan of 2 – 5 years, it is a lifetime.
But age alone is not a reason to redesign a website as long as it is meeting the needs of the business, customers and prospects. So before designing the site, we worked with the Bank to determine if there was a need from a usability, technology or compliance standpoint.
Since the site had launched, we had seen both overall visits, and mobile usage, increase exponentially, speaking to the role the site plays as a customer service and sales tool. With that in mind, our client was looking to support their brand, while also gaining control over the site, particularly as it related to updating rates, making quick updates, or posting alerts and news. Recent litigation against community banks also raised concerns about the site’s accessibility which could be addressed with a new site.
With these factors in mind, we worked with the Bank to evaluate hosting and content management solutions before deciding on a responsive, WordPress-driven website at their current host, Dovetail Internet Technologies.
To maximize resources, we jumpstarted the website redesign process by using a premium WordPress theme purchased on the Bank’s behalf. Customizing the template with the Bank’s colors, photos and messaging we ensured the site supported the Bank’s “Your Life. Your Bank” brand, while also giving the flexibility for future updates.
Utilizing a mix of real and stock photos, purchased images were carefully curated to ensure a diverse mix of people, while also including a touch of red to support the Bank’s theme.
With the goal of improving accessibility as recommended by the American Bankers Association, we replaced the majority of pdfs with WordPress-driven pages, while ensuring remaining pdfs were made accessible. New accessibility tools were introduced to allow visitors control over the look of the site. Before launch, SiteImprove audited the site for potential accessibility issues and continues to monitor on an ongoing basis.
Preparing for launch, we cataloged and mapped redirects for the majority of pages on the site, avoiding search errors. With the new site live, our client reported minimal disruption, as well as several positive comments from colleagues.
And now, the Bank has a site that resets the redesign clock and positions them for the future!