The City of Brookings website has been given a makeover. The new and improved website launched January 2nd, 2020.
The goal of the refresh is to provide more ease of navigation for community members as well as an upgrade of the entire user experience. Changing web use habits and technological advances drove the need for an update. When the previous site design was launched, many users were accessing the website from their personal computers. At that time, visiting the site from a mobile browser created a less than optimal experience, and a Brookings app was built and offered to accommodate the need for user-friendly mobile use. Since that time, web design technology has advanced, allowing for optimization of website viewing through handheld devices using responsive design. The upgraded website utilizes that technology.
“We wanted our new site to be mobile friendly so we could phase out the Brookings website app. Our web analytics show that a substantial number of visitors are now accessing our site using their mobile devices rather than computers. Mobile visits are more than double that of our desktop users, “says Chelsie Bakken, Brookings’ marketing and media coordinator. “We wanted users to be able to visit the site right from their handheld devices without having to download something to do so.”
Community members can still access the Brookings mobile app, but as it is phased out updates will no longer be made. With the discontinuation of the Brookings web app, which simply mirrored the content of the website, the City is working on a new feedback/reporting app that will be launched later this year.
Brookings contracted with CivicPlus, a company that specializes in software and digital technology resources for local governments for the redesign and development of the site. In addition to the mobile-optimized experience, it offers refreshed aesthetics, mega menus for ease of navigation, an improved calendar, a social media live feed, ADA accessibility upgrades, and a new city spotlight section. “With new tools available to us through the updated platform, there are more items that users can look forward to us upgrading this year,” says Bakken. “We’re extremely excited about this rollout. It’s a great way to kick off the new year.”
City manager Paul Briseno is also optimistic about the launch stating, “The City of Brookings is a progressive, forward-thinking government. Organizationally were always evaluating opportunities to increase citizen engagement and trust through improved and streamlined services. Our website revamp is easier to navigate and provides better engagement for our residents while granting greater transparency of important issues, projects, and city matters.
I’m excited for this and many upcoming technological advancements that will be unveiled this year to engage community members, business owners, developers, elected and city employees. Our website is the first impression many people have of our city, now the true beauty of our community is better represented to the world.”
You can visit the updated website at www.cityofbrookings.org.