Archived News Release: August 1, 2023 - The City of Ann Arbor has launched a redesigned website to enhance online transparency, increase public access to important city information and create a more user-friendly site for all. The new site went live Aug. 1.
“The city website is a valuable communication tool for visitors, businesses and residents, which is why it has been an important goal for us to improve its design, functionality and usefulness," said Milton Dohoney Jr., Ann Arbor city administrator. “Due to a tremendous amount of information on the website, users were having trouble finding what they were looking for; and the outdated design was not reflective of Ann Arbor as an innovative and sustainable city," Dohoney added. “I hope users find the new and improved A2gov website to be easier to navigate and more engaging."
In 2022, the city began working with Interpersonal Frequency to redesign A2gov's global navigation, incorporate responsive design and improve content accessibility via ADA compliant testing. As part of the redesign process, a comprehensive analysis of the website was performed via a content audit, user experience testing and Voice of Citizen® survey feedback. The discoveries served to inform the new design and layout, leading to enhancements, including:
Multiple navigation entry points: “Residents and visitors," “government," “services," “featured pages" and “news and events."
The prominent “I want to" section on the homepage serves as a helpful feature for task-focused users. By providing clear and concise options or links, users can quickly find what they are looking for without having to navigate through multiple pages. This design element is intended to enhance user satisfaction by reducing the time and effort required to reach the desired destination/information.
The introduction of a park finder tool addresses a specific user need and enhances the website's functionality. By implementing this tool, users can easily locate parks in Ann Arbor based on their preferences and requirements. This addition not only improves user experience but also encourages users to explore city parks.
To give users a convenient overview of services provided by the City of Ann Arbor, the services page format uses clear, easy-to-follow navigation and descriptive headings. This design improvement will allow users to find the information they need more easily.
Responsive design and new look
The new design, overall, incorporates a modern and visually appealing color palette that reinforces the city's brand. Mobile-first responsive design ensures the website is easy to view and navigate on various screen sizes. This approach caters to the increasing number of users accessing the web through mobile devices.
Increased accessibility and transparency
Increased accessibility to information due to Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) design and compatibility testing.
Miller's Law was followed. Miller's Law states that the average person can only hold around seven chunks of information in their short-term memory. To adhere to this principle and prevent overwhelming users with excessive information, the city's website design incorporates this principle by presenting content in easily digestible chunks, uses clear section blocks, arranges content into visually distinct sections with appropriate headings to improve readability and scan-ability. This design strategy supports the user's ability to quickly find specific information, leading to improved comprehension and a more efficient browsing experience.
The city welcomes website user feedback and wants to know what the public thinks of the new design, layout and navigation. Please share any comments to [email protected].
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