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Website Design for FORREC

Web Design for Experience Designers

FORREC

Launch website

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Web Design Services

  • UX (User Experience) Design
  • Information Architecture
  • Responsive Website Design
  • Art Direction & Consulting

Platform

  • Responsive Web Development
  • Custom WordPress Development
  • Accessibility Compliance
  • Search Engine Optimization

Project Overview

Working with another creative agency to design and build their public-facing website is a unique opportunity that presents many opportunities to challenge ourselves and grow as web designers and creative thinkers alike.

Custom WordPress Design for the Talented Experience Designers at FORREC.

When we kick off a new web design project, there is often a lot of education involved in bringing our client up to speed with the creative process and reasoning behind it. Learning about the end-user or audience and how they intend to use or interact with the new website is a key element in establishing a project plan to move forward with in order to measure success and keep all stakeholders on the same page. In this case, however, the team at FORREC was already very well versed in the creative process and was very eager to dive right in as they’ve spent years following the same creative process to create compelling guest experiences on six different continents around the world.

On the heels of a fresh rebranding exercise, we kicked off the new website design project with FORREC, quickly establishing key goals for the new website and reviewing the newly established brand guidelines together.

FORREC Custom Web Design

Website Design Goals

  • Analytics discovery – a top-to-bottom review of historical web analytics and audience metrics would be conducted to identify user personas and relevant technologies used to engage with the website.
  • Brand review – a team review to understand and familiarize ourselves with the newly established brand guidelines created by FORREC’s branding partner.
  • User-Interface design – the design of a completely custom user interface design playing off of key digital brand elements to establish a fully ownable website design.
  • Custom WordPress development – to manage the new interactive website and provide total control over every pixel, the development of a custom WordPress CMS was paramount in providing the marketing team with the most powerful content tools.
  • Search Engine Optimizationtechnical SEO and performance optimization strategies would be crucial in managing and maintaining the SEO footprint of an image-driven website.
Custom WordPress Web Design for FORREC

The Web Design Process

FORREC operates around the world and required a multilingual site that served North American and European markets in English, as well as Asian markets in Chinese. Our experience working with multilanguage websites, in particular Chinese websites would be heavily relied on throughout the design and development process that followed.

Handcrafting unique web experiences for creative agencies presents a unique challenge full of opportunities to challenge the status quo. After 20 years in the web design industry, our web design team has created a 6-step web design process that we follow no matter the scope or scale of the project we’re engaged in.

The first and most fundamental phase of any project is Research and Discovery. This initial phase is paramount and establishes key benchmarks and milestones for the strategic design and development phases to follow. The Discovery phase provides an opportunity for our creative thinkers to delve into the raw user analytics data on the old website and understand what may be working well for the intended audience and, perhaps even more important, what isn’t working. In the grand scheme of things, the numbers can’t lie and help paint a clear picture of how daily visitors are interacting with the website and providing insight into which information they find the most valuable. Through this research, we also identify key user challenges evident within the existing website navigation and figure out how to solve them with a new site map design.

Data-driven Web Design Strategy

How research pays off.

Designing a Winning UX

Other important data our team uncovers from the Discovery phase outlines the technology and screen resolutions that the majority of website visitors are using to view the current website. It’s critical to have this information in on hand as we move into the Strategy phase of the project. Our UX designers establish the information architecture and wireframe prototypes to build a blueprint for the new website’s success. Everything created is handcrafted and tailored specifically to the range of devices and technology that the audience uses, ensuring we offer a great and memorable user experience.

With stakeholder approval of the wireframes, we transition into what most of our clients find to be the most fun project phase – the creative design. Our web designers first work up a brand new user interface design concept focusing on a handful of key page layouts. By first establishing the concept design for high-value pages, we worked with the team at FORREC to refine the new design system before carrying the approach across all wireframes created in the Strategy phase to build out an end-to-end template library to bring the new website to life.

Custom Web Design for FORREC

High-fidelity Creativity

This process includes high-fidelity website design mock-ups for both the desktop and mobile environments that are brought to life using a powerful collaboration and prototyping tool that helps stakeholders review and understand the intended layout and interactions or behaviours and make the most educated decisions before approving the design for development.

As we bring our conceptual designs to life before the first line of code is written, we ensure a smoother creative UI design phase, limiting the need for unnecessary revisions that ultimately derail the creative process and the project timeline.

A flexible UI Design for All Users

No boundaries.

Mobile-thinking From Top to Bottom

With the new website design approved by the FORREC team, our front-end web developers took the reigns to begin the careful process of converting the new UI designs into pixel-perfect HTML and CSS templates. At this stage, our quality assurance expert runs the newly created page templates through initial beta testing to check for display and performance bugs and to make sure the responsive elements behave as expected across contemporary browsers and mobile devices.

Tablet Design for FORREC
Mobile Website Design for FORREC Mobile Web Design for FORREC

QA Testing and Front-end Poetry

Following this first round of QA testing, our WordPress developers join the fray and get to work integrating the custom page designs with a new WordPress backend tailored specifically to FORREC’s new website design and marketing goals.

Relying on the world’s most powerful CMS to manage the website ensures FORREC has the latest and greatest content management tools at their fingertips. Our approach to custom web development has always been to focus on craftsmanship and future-forward insight to provide as much flexibility in the backend content management system so that our clients have a truly customized experience powering their brand new one-of-a-kind website. This practice provides our clients with complete control and confidence to manage the website in the years to come.

Samara Wolofsky

“It’s exciting working with other professionals in the design industry as it’s an opportunity to collaborate and get creative to the max. Parachute did a great job capturing the new brand identity for our new website: it’s sleek and clean, professional-looking, and really speaks to our motto of Inspiration at Work. Parachute was incredibly responsive, kept the project on schedule and in-budget, and overall were great partners to work with.”

FORREC
Samara Wolofsky,

Communications Manager, FORREC

Custom Web Design for FORREC

Finishing Touches and Preparing for Launch!

With the completion of the Development phase, we conducted a WordPress CMS demo with the marketing team at FORREC to test drive all aspects of the new CMS and content management tools while sharing our experience for ongoing search engine optimization and content management best practices. After a little pre-launch content fine-tuning, the new site was passed through a final QA test, ensuring all content was in the correct place, the web pages were functioning as intended, and everything was responding to various desktop and mobile devices.

Following a successful early morning launch, our 301 redirect strategy was rolled out to ensure the old URLs and indexed links were carefully mapped to the most appropriate areas of the new website, and our team stepped back into a supporting role while the FORREC team took over the new website.

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