Municipal Web Design – Best Practice
For municipals, having a well-designed and easy-to-use website is becoming increasingly important.
Websites are one of the most important tools for citizens to get information about municipalities. In fact, some studies show that people are far more likely to go online for information about their hometowns, rather than calling a town official.
A question that’s commonly asked, though, is, “What are the best practices for municipal web design?” What is it that makes some websites intuitive, and aesthetically pleasing?
While everyone has their own opinion on what makes a design great, there are a few things that are always consistent with well-designed websites. Websites that are easy to update, maintain, and navigate, and contain relevant information are generally regarded as well-designed.
Enlisting the Services of a Qualified Web Designer
According to the results of a study by Monmouth University Polling Institute and Graduate Program in Public Policy, websites that are designed by third party vendors with multiple clients tend to perform better than those which are built by single-client designers or by municipal staff.
“Evidence from this project suggests that vendors who serve multiple clients produce the
best performing websites,” the study states.
At Town Web Design, our goal is to create websites that are well-designed. We make it so that the site is easy for the clerk to update. When a site is easy to manage, it’s easier to keep it current and provide relevant and useful information to visitors.
Here are some of our municipal web design best practices that we employ.
Easy to Manage and Update
To ensure that our websites will be easy to manage and update, we offer specific features that make life easier for town clerks. Some of these features can be used for:
- Uploading minutes and agendas
- Posting news and notices
- Adding items to the calendar
These features make it easier to keep the site updated and current. When a site contains current and relevant information, the town residents will be more likely to visit the site again in the future.
Easy-to-Navigate Layout and Design
The best websites are easy to navigate. They’re laid out in a format that makes sense, and visitors are able to follow a logical path from one point to another. This is important because if a site is difficult to navigate, residents will be less likely to come back.
The right use of fonts, graphics, and a well-organized presentation of information are all key features of well-designed websites.
At Town Web Design, our websites have a smooth and seamless layout. Visitors have no trouble navigating the site, making it easy for them to find what they’re searching for. Our approach allows us to ensure that the website will be intuitive and easy to use, even for first-time visitors.
With our layouts, relevant information is featured prominently. Links to minutes, agendas, a calendar of events, and notices are included on the homepage. We want residents to find the info quickly without having to click around.
Here are a few features that the layout of a well-designed website will have:
- Excellent home page organization with links to relevant information
- Links to budgets
- Links to social media accounts, which the town uses to communicate with the town
- An online payment option for taxes, parking tickets, water and sewer bills, and other fees
- Easy-to-find contact information, including email addresses for the town clerk and officials
- A search box
- FAQ page
Keeping relevant information front and center is an important part of our website design process.
At Town Web Design, our goal with each website that we design is to blend high usability and aesthetics. By creating websites that are easy to update, and simple to navigate, as well as aesthetically pleasing, we can make life easier for the town clerk, and subsequently, for the website visitors as well.
Are you looking for a website for your municipality? Contact Town Web Design to see about a responsive and well-designed website for your town.