A new website for Goshen College will launch Monday, Sept. 29.
The homepage will launch first, with the rest of the website following behind to include significant changes in the format, which hasn’t been redesigned since March of 2010.
According to Jodi Beyeler, director of the Communications and Marketing department and project leader for the new website, one goal of the new website is to make it more mobile friendly.
“The future is in mobile devices, and we needed to get with the times,” Beyeler said.
Stats gathered in the Communications and Marketing department showed that 20.78 percent of visitors to the GC website this past year visited from a mobile device. This is up from 12.65 percent the year prior.
Goshen’s original website was created by Paul Meyer Reimer, physics professor. His original format has been built upon over the years, placing new versions on top of the existing one.
The layering of new designs over others is what contributed to all the problems with the current website. The new website will be a complete overhaul of the old formats, making information more accessible and more visually appealing to visitors.
Another goal of the new website was to create an interactive and responsive website that was easy to use and promotes the quality and excellence of a GC education. The new website includes features such as improved navigation tools, program and audience-specific tabs, new student, faculty and alumni profiles, and direct links to GC social media. The intent is for these features to help showcase the community and campus culture to attract prospective students.
The addition of social media, charts and statistics, and profiles from students, alumni and faculty, are all implemented in ways that will hopefully attract new students to the college and its programs.
The staff is particularly excited to see how users react to the addition of longer pages. Currently, information on a given page is very short. If users wish to know more about that area, they have to click on new links to get to more pages related to that topic.
On the new website, pages will be longer and users will have the ability to scroll, eliminating the need for excessive links and making accessibility to information easier.
The two people responsible for a large portion of the new website design are Micah Miller-Eshleman, Goshen’s web designer and developer, and Hannah Gerig Meyer, Goshen’s graphic designer. Together, they collaborated on what the website would look like and what content should be included. However, other staff and interns played vital roles in content, development and transfer of content.
One unique feature of the new website will be the incorporation of squirrels into the design. Drawn by Emma Gerig, a 2013 Goshen College graduate, these squirrels appear around the website and often accompany statistics and selling points about Goshen College.
According to Gerig Meyer, they introduced the squirrels to give a fun, unique twist to the sophisticated, clean new look of the website.
The designers are looking forward to getting feedback from students, faculty, and visitors on the design of the new website.
Miller-Eshleman said, “I’m most excited about putting together tracking codes so we can see what visitors look at, what they engage with, what they’re ignoring, and what works about the new design.”
To get a sneak peak at the new website, visit http://production.goshen.edu/. For any feedback or questions on the new website, students are encouraged to contact the communication and m33arketing department by emailing email@example.com.