November 22, 2016

Town Web Design’s User Survey Results and the Changes We’ve Made

At TownWeb, we constantly strive to improve our municipal web design package and customer support. Our current clients may remember that in August we conducted a survey to see how you felt about TownCMS v5 software and its ease of use.


At TownWeb, we constantly strive to improve our municipal web design package and customer support. Our current clients may remember that in August we conducted a survey to see how you felt about TownCMS v5 software and its ease of use. We want to thank everyone who completed the survey because it has been invaluable in creating the latest version of the Dashboard. In this blog post, we’ll summarize the main concerns Town clerks relayed to us in the survey and fill you in on the changes we’ve made as a result.

What did we ask you in the survey and what were your responses?

We want to be as transparent as possible in our reporting of the survey results, so we’ll outline the good and the bad. This was our first question:

How satisfied are you as a customer of TownWeb?

We gave you a scale from 1 to 5 and we ranked 3.92 out of 5.00 in terms of customer satisfaction. However, our follow-up question proved more illuminating.

Why do you give us this rating?

The most positive responses included: “You guys are always there for training, help, support or new ideas to be more transparent to citizens.”“Reasonable cost.”“Nice appearance of website, including incorporating a lot of photos. Fast, friendly help by email. I know I could call if I really needed to.” “Excellent at answering questions and making the necessary updates for our College Goal Wisconsin site. I also find our town website is easy to navigate and update.” “I am happy with the affordability of the product, basic design of the website, and service.”

However, we also got some very helpful feedback on how we can improve our services. Most of our customers frustrations seem to be based around manually adding information and a need for better user manuals. See below for examples: “I would have liked to get a printed manual right away. Although the videos are helpful, I need to have something to look at when I try to do what I have Learned from the video.” “I am still struggling with the new website. I have had two training sessions but I still can't load the treasurer's report and election notices, as an example.

I know I am missing a step but I can't find a user manual for this. I plan on taking another training class. Currently, this website seems harder to load into than the old one. I'm sure once I know how to do it I will probably change my mind. I wish you had a complete set of user manuals for all categories with step by step instructions on the website. I do really like the layout of the new one, it is very user friendly and easy to find what you may be looking for.” “Customer service is great. Ease of using the new site a little frustrating.” “I was entering resolutions and I want it to be single spaced but could not find where that option was in the text box.” “Also I would like the agendas minutes to be by date order automatically with the latest on the top.”

What are things that you would like to see improved with your website or the service we provide?

We provided these possible answers:

These were your major responses about the improvements you would like to see:

Is there anything else you would like to tell us?

The responses we received were again focused on functionality: “More consistent performance of website pages for the end user. For instance, the How Do I page sometimes works (displays and allows access to subordinate pages) and sometimes doesn't (shows subordinate pages with next lower pages blacked out).” “There are too many steps...for instance, I would recommend that when you add a new TWD meeting, have the calendar be automatically updated. Also, when entering into TWD Meeting Repository, have the default list by date order (newest first) rather than alphabetical.” “I would like to see the ability to create folders for uploaded files. Very difficult to find anything once the files start to accumulate.”


Our main takeaways from the survey

We’re delighted that our customers seem so happy with TWD’s training and support, but we realize we need to improve the usability of our dashboard. The major takeaway of the survey results is that a lot of municipal clerks find our dashboard far too complicated to navigate and operate. They are not always able to find all of the relevant information and options for updating their most important pages such as minutes and agendas. We came to the conclusion that there is a lot of room for improvement.

What we set out to change


After reading the responses to our survey, it was clear that we needed to improve the usability of our Dashboard. In fact, customers didn’t only need extra guidance on how to use TownCMS v5, but they also needed a better Dashboard in the first place. We realized that town clerks were having to click too many times and updating pages was a laborious process. In short, we intended to overhaul the Dashboard to make it far more efficient. We also got a lot of requests for more data about website visitors so we wanted to make sure all municipalities could access this information.

3 months later and these are the changes we’ve made...

We asked our customers what they wanted and heard the answers loud and clear! Consequently, we’ve enhanced the Dashboard to meet the needs of our customers, and to make the clerks life easier. Uploading news, notices, minutes and agendas is more efficient. For example, now when municipal clerks click on the Minutes/Agendas button, the new window pops up, and updates can be made right away.Be sure to try the video demo to become familiar with our new Dashboard.

The new Dashboard is much more intuitive and everything is now one click away. Each page has a pop-up window that makes the updating process much faster than before. Now municipalities receive automatic notifications of new info or updates from TWD if there are some updates or relevant new blog posts. Google Analytics is now available in the new dashboard to help town clerks monitor visitors to their site. It generates information regarding location, time spent on the website, device usage and demographics. We haven’t just improved the functionality; the aesthetics are also much better. The new dashboard features the analytics on the main page and the events table has been redesigned to look more transparent and organized. New Dashboard


We hope you like the new dashboard. All the changes we make are made for the benefit of our customers, so please let us know if there is anything else you would like to see improved.