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June 13, 2013 Volume 34, No. 31

Redesigned MU home page premiered Wednesday


More MU news and social media links are new to site

The redesigned site made its premiere Wednesday, featuring more campus news and social media links on a platform that is easier to navigate.

The new site is responsive to all media formats, meaning that regardless of device used — be it iPhone, desktop or Android — the screen size and content will adapt and be compatible, Web Communications assistant director Jason Rollins said.

This makes the revamped site an ideal outlet for its role as a campus news source by offering links to MU News, MIZZOU magazine, Mizzou Weekly, CAFNR News and other campus publications.  

“We have been wanting this change for a long time,” said Lori Croy, director of Web Communications. “The way the world uses the Web has changed. We can now supply the most useful content in the most usable way.”

Relying on years’ worth of user statistics and analytical data, Web Communications has reimagined the placement of links, content and search results to make them user-friendly.

“We used larger clickable areas and fonts since people are using touchscreens,” said lead project designer Josh Nichols. “We relied on color and visuals, like fonts, to let the design be bold and work efficiently.”

A story banner will open the site by highlighting a single story with thumbnails following. This is contrary to the old four-story scrolling banner. Extensive analytical tracking showed that most visitors were clicking on the first image and story and ignoring most of the remaining scroll, Rollins said. This meant readers might be missing the most important story among the four.

“When a user is presented with too many choices, many times they make no choice at all,” Rollins said.

Part of sharing information is using social media. The homepage’s footer will link to a social media site that combines trending Mizzou topics on outlets such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. 

The final product is a one-stop MU online platform.

“We want to share information and promote Mizzou as a whole,” Rollins said.

— Lauren Steele