Somerville House Website
A ‘refreshing’ exercise to update the website of Somerville House in time for the School’s open day shows what can be achieved when inhouse and external resources work in close cooperation. The experience proved both time and cost effective, as well as perfectly complementing the design elements of existing Somerville House marketing materials. And the result was a much improved, dynamic website with clear information and action pathways for users.
The exercise brought together external web designers and the School’s inhouse marketing department. The urgent brief was to extend the Somerville House ‘landmark school’ branding to the renewed website, incorporate social media for greater interactivity, and make the relatively large site extremely easy to navigate, especially for parents of prospective students.
“It was a seamless working relationship – like having our own IT and design department,” according to Somerville House Communication and Relations Manager, Elizabeth Macpherson. “The site was ‘reskinned’ in a very short timeframe to refresh the look and improve the navigation process; and our internal people with extensive knowledge of the School then worked to audit and restructure the content to fit the new design.”
The focus of the new website is ‘design for conversion’. This approach encourages website visitors to act rather than simply skim the content. Prominent tabs on the cover page take parents of prospective students on a virtual tour of the School, or direct them straight to vital enrolment information and advice. Existing members of the School community also have a clear portal to information of interest to them.
“Our earlier website didn’t have a prominent search bar or fully consider the different users and their specific information needs, so it was easy to get lost. Now, with a couple of clicks, visitors to the site can take a clear journey without going wrong,” Elizabeth explains.
Big bold images of the students, consistent with the School’s marketing strategy to let high quality photography convey key messages, are a major visual feature of this website. The distinctive lime green of the Somerville House uniform is also used throughout with maximum design effect.
Visit the Somerville House Website