Our partnership began in 2014 when we were approached to build their first website. The site was built using a pre-existing theme framework to keep costs down in the early stages of their business, which in turn restricted the design. However, the solution we built worked well for a number of years.
When approached to do some additional work to the site earlier this year we advised, due to the complex nature of the work, they also invest a little extra and completely refresh the website design.
Design & Development
We wanted to make the content easier to read/access, so making big changes to the spacing was essential, as well as an increase the font size throughout. We also focussed on key messages.
Previously the homepage only included two of five main services and the latest two news stories. We now display the core services immediately beneath the homepage slider which displays the latest news about the business.
Each core service is distinctly different and so we use brand colours to distinguish the homepage icons, as individual page image overlays, buttons and full-width sections – to really help enforce their brand identity. This also helps add a lovely bit of visual flair as you navigate around the site.
By far one of the most important aspects of the site is the development of the membership functionality. We converted it from a restricted framework to the most popular membership plugin on the WordPress market, MemberPress. From the get-go, this offered a myriad of options for how they want to handle future memberships, such as various levels and offering paid memberships.
MemberPress allows us to create various user groups and then set up a series of rules to determine which groups could access the content throughout the site, as well as offering an excerpt and up selling the memberships on the site to people who aren’t already signed up. This linked in perfectly with their pre-existing forum which was already set up with BBPress and the regular WordPress articles.
Since building their first website, we’ve moved to a hybrid custom theme utilising Elementor, allowing for flexible page designs whilst not having the bloat of a theme framework.
The results speak for themselves, we compared GT Metrix scores before and after the new site:
Page Size: 1.6MB
Page Size: 1.3MB
It looks better and performs better. A job well done.