The Town of Chapel Hill has launched a new website with improved functionality, simplified menus and clean aesthetics.
We are grateful for the engagement from the community that contributed to our redesigned website. We hope that you will be pleased with our new aesthetic and improved navigation. Town staff continue to refine various elements, rebuild webpages and streamline content.
The Website Redesign (staff) Team engaged in a card sorting activity on May 22, 2019, and then a diverse group participated in a similar activity at Project Update on May 23, 2019. An online card sorting activity was created for interested members of the public in early June 2019.
Find Services. Hands down – this was the most used tier and it is clear that this will be the access point for most-used content.
What usability testing told us.
We are collaborating with a user design experience class from the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Media and Journalism that has conducted usability testing on the current website. Students created page layout schematics that are being reviewed as part of the design process. Here are some of their findings:
There are clear calls to action through the homepage
Sidebar navigation hierarchy is hard to follow
Top-level menu hover is overwhelming and gets called up by accident
Users had to click on a top-level menu item again on the sidebar to view the information they were expecting to be right there
Only one user noticed the a-z menu at the top, other users say it isn’t helpful
Home page slide show did not get any engagement from the users
From answers provided in the questionnaires, it seems like though the website has a lot of useful information, users benefit more from less; they would like simplicity while searching for their interests as seen in the “six buttons” example.
Where users go on the Town website.
Most visited pages – bus routes, home, jobs, pool schedules, trash collection, news
Most searched terms – bus routes, camps, park and ride, parks and recreation, jobs, parking, gym schedule
From homepage, visitors went to bus routes, news, jobs, I Want To, calendar
What you have to say about the Town website.
(A Public Website Survey was done May 31 – June 20, 2019)
75% say YES they are able to complete intended tasks – 15% say NO
59% are seeking news and updates; 51% are seeking meetings or events; 37% seeking zoning/development; 36% seeking bus routes
Site is easy to use – 41% say YES; 28% say NO; 31% neutral
Easy to find info – 33% say YES (there were no “strong agrees); 42% say NO; 24% neutral
Visually appealing – 35% say YES; 31% say NO
Info is helpful – 68% say YES; 9% say NO; 23% neutral
Info is up-to-date – 53% say YES; 13% say NO; 34% neutral
Info is easy to understand – 60% say YES; 17% say NO; 23% neutral
I tend to use the search bar or just enter the site from Google.
Very impressed with the amount of information we post for the public. I use the calendar to find meeting agendas and materials. To get to past meetings, you have to scroll back month by month, which gets tedious if you're going back a year or two. It would be great to add a function that would let you jump to a particular month/year.
Too much content. Content no longer of significance.
I appreciate the efforts to work on the site. I do find that the home page has way too much on it, in different sizes and fonts, to quickly know under what category I'll find what I want. More white space would be fantastic.
How the Town website ranked in the 2018 Community Survey.
Usefulness of Town website – 12% Very Satisfied, 44% Satisfied, 38% neutral, 6% dissatisfied
This will be the Town's 5th website design.
1st website in 1995
2nd website in 2005 (Civic Plus)
3rd website in 2009 (Vision Internet)
4th website in 2014 (Vision Internet)
5th website (coming soon with Granicus)
Did you know? The Town of Chapel Hill was among the first U.S. cities to test use of social media, beginning with Facebook and Twitter in 2008.