WestCoast2008:Assessing and Redesigning Web Sites

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How does managing a website redesign differ from managing a website build from scratch? What techniques and best practices can help you assess what needs to be updated, redesign appropriately, and then effectively implement the changes?

Notetaker: Katie

Possible Topics

1. How to resolve the site architecture development with partners: consultants and design firms
2. Typical discovery questions to lead to accurate design and development specifications
3. Managing the current content inventory and content mapping


1. Introductions and Concerns
2. John Share's His Experience

  • The Web Development Process includes all areas of the nonprofit and thus requires buy in from most staffmembers
  • Making sure that the website serves as a dialogue between constituents and organization instead of a one way advertisement

3. Michael share's his experience with Content Mapping

  • Client created user stories so that during the entire migration, his team could filter down exactly what content they needed and how the site architecture should really function.
  • The functional spec took a whole year to develop because it required the organization to reflect on its internal philosophies and public message (via content).
  • Had to write custom scripts and 404 pages to redirect old Google indexes
  • Looked at web stats to further determine proper site architecture

4. Multiple discussions on the advantages of technical knowledge of a Project Manager and shielding the client from the designer and developer at initial stage
5. Discussion on range of RFP bids

6. Discussion of project managers estimating accurate project budget based on initial discovery process and the difficulties 7. Precaution of showing the client intermediate steps because they have problems getting past exactly what they are seeing


  • Must communication website vision
  • Must articulate goals
  • Do a content inventory of current site
  • John makes the note in contracts to mention that the website development process may usurp issues with business processes and management practices that may make the process more complex and delayed.
  • Focus on developing a dialogue with the visitors of your site.
  • Content contribution doesn't necessarily have to be democratic among staffmembers; better content is developed by authors with a focused message.
  • 7 choices or less of weblinks on a page.