UX/UI, WEBSITE DESIGN
Publication Professionals; Professional editors at your fingertips!
I am the lead designer on the website project for this professional editing business based out of Fairfax, Virginia. I have been tasked with the creation, design direction and maintenance involved in ensuring the Wordpress site is up to date and working as expected.
We started a redesign after a quick period of server related issues with the original hosting company. As a result, we researching a few hosts and themes, we switched to one that allowed for a lot of custom code and felt more natural to use and create within. After attempting to work with the host to ensure a seamless experience, we decided to pack everything up and switch to a different host. That process did cause some interesting issues and I was able to adjust them without trouble. After moving the site, the priority being the home page and then building out the rest of the pages.
I have worked with the President and founder of PubsPros on minor projects before being selected to work on their website. Being the go to web designer for a small and respected editing company has been really quite interesting.
I have been allowed creative freedom, looked upon as the expert, and work collaboratively with the owners to create something very beautiful. Especially after recently graduating and focusing on Wordpress as a way to create and fulfill client expectations.
THE FINE DETAILS
TIMELINE: Project began in 2016
ROLE: UX/UI designer, Web designer
SCOPE: UX/UI Design, Website creation, Page layout
TOOLS: Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Wordpress
ASSETS: Wordpress Pages & Design, PNGs
CUSTOMER FOCUSED DESIGN
Publications Professionals is a very customer focused editing and proofreading business. In creating this site, we continued to keep their end clients in mind as we worked on the site. Understanding the user preference as far as interaction and color scheme was something that was fully researched and implemented. Constantly ensuring the site worked as beautifully on mobile devices as it did on a desktop computer was a high priority. If something worked on desktop, but not on mobile, the idea was tabled until a solution could be reached. Sometimes this meant additional research and looking specifically at user journeys as they interact with the site, but ultimately this has been our focus as we continue to build out the site.
USERS & AUDIENCE
The target users and customers of Publications Professionals are primarily book publishers needing editors, small to large businesses producing long documents, and editors. These users specifically are looking for a seamless experience and an easy to navigate site. They want to be able to view the information they need quickly and easily.
One key difference between this group of users/customers is they primarily view the site on desktop and secondarily via mobile.
TEAM & ROLE
With my previous experience of creating seamless online experiences using Wordpress, as the lead UX/UI designer I led the team in making changes requested from users, customers, and the owners.
I coordinated and led the design of the site including: prototyping, product design, visual design, interaction, plugin support and recommendation, User journey and research, and some architecture.
In order to identify the problems with the website and the next steps to take, we started out by making the site aligned with the end user's needs. We wanted to make the site function better and provide customers a better experience than any other in this industry. After going through feature requests and changes (and a complete redesign after moving the site to another host,) we were able to pinpoint areas of opportunity; visitors wanted an easier way to find pertinent information about PubsPros without having to look too much. Although we knew to truly grow the site to something more would require more resources, we focused entirely on the user experience in finding the appropriate information and proceed to design the site around that experience.
As we continued to visually explore options to enhancing the overall experience for the user, at one point during the design we decided to perfect the about us and careers sections. We had specific user feedback and iteration that showed that our specific user group who frequented the site preferred to see this information in subdirectories and an easy layout to follow. At the time we had quite a few dropdown menus that were difficult to navigate on mobile, so we opted for a submenu model of navigation.
The objective of the website and the interface was to keep the user/customers informed and allow for an easy way to find information about PubsPros. We accomplished this by keeping the overall design very visual with large photography, strategic use and placement of text, vibrant color use, and an overall corporate look that encourages interaction.
Once we landed on a fully customizable theme that could provide the high level of enhancement we wanted, we began to design the layout of the site. Using user feedback and personas, we curated the site to appear similar to a newspaper or book based upon this research and who the target audience we are striving for. So far, feedback from users and customers has been extremely positive.
Inspiration for the site came from PubsPros' own library of clientele and industry. The background is a simple white with an occasional light grey background to differentiate sections. A deep green background is used as well to emphasize quotes and important text. Keeping the overall design simple.
The navigation at the top of the site is fairly simple, with the idea of eliminating drop down menus in favor of using submenus underneath the hero image. Navigating the site follows along with standard web layout and techniques.
OUTCOME & RESULTS
Since launching the website, it has been well received by both PubsPros and their visitors. It has increased their online visibility which can potentially become a positive income stream for the company. PubsPros is quickly becoming a well-rounded source for clients and visitors. A fantastic result of this project has been the inspiration to continue to build things into the site. Our list does get a little long, but going into the next year, there will be a lot of fun things to build.
As a result of working with this client, I learned that when designing a site and encountering something less than ideal that could impact their business, the best course of action is to be honest, but to also offer a couple solutions addressing the issue.
Client: Publications Professionals LLC | Barbara Hart
UX/UI Designer: Meghan Lewis
©Publications Professionals | www.pubspros.com