UX/UI research for the DPTA Website
Redesigning the Dingle Peninsula website was a huge undertaking. Our initial aim was to redesign the website to reflect the new branding style, and to make it mobile friendly. However there were many, many other problems in relation to the redesign.
The biggest problem we discovered, was the fact that several people worked on the management of this website over the years, each with their own ideas of how it should be managed, with no actual guidelines at all! Pages were doubled instead of updated, they were not categorized or tagged correctly, the photos were not filed in correct folders, let alone sized properly. To be honest, the backend was a nightmare, a joomla triangle of the highest order! We needed to bring order to this chaotic and complex directory system, but without loosing the existing website’s position in Google. The website is hugely popular with visitors and has thousands of hits every month, despite never paying for an advert of any kind.
Working with Huw from OnTarget Webdesign, we planned a course of action. Starting with a study of heatmaps from the existing site to see what users were actually doing on the page. This gave us a great head start into what we needed to keep and what we could loose. While Huw began to rebuild the backend of this massive joomla website, I worked on the UX/UI with a colleague from the DPTA. It took 2 full-on days playing with of stickynotes just to map out the existing pages, and re-categorize them in an order that made sense.
Luckily the content on the existing website was great, so it was only a question of rewriting it, and adding/updating details. This could be done over time by DPTA staff, who would be trained in maintaining the website better, but this time with very specific guidelines!
The new website isn’t perfect, there were serious budget and time constraints, but as its a website that is constantly changing and being updated, I think we did the best job we could under the circumstances.
This is what the original website looked like:
After our research into the current website, and also from in-dept researching of other travel destinations websites, as well as users needs and wants, such as suggested itineraries, we created our initial mock up of the new website.
Here is the current website, as it stands. For a full view visit https://dingle-peninsula.ie/