Winner: U.S. Chamber of Commerce - Redesign or Bust: The Story of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Website Redesign
Representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of every size and sector, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce promises to be “the voice of business in Washington, D.C.” Critical to this mission is its website, uschamber.com, which serves as its primary and most visible communications platform.
However, with its poor navigability, dated design and limited content, the former website hurt the Chamber’s ability to achieve its mission. Thus, in order to harness its brand story, support its editorial strategy, and make its content accessible on multiple channels and devices, the site needed a complete overhaul.
One aspect of the redesign included providing intuitive and consistent way-finding mechanisms, so that once users landed on the site, they could easily find their way around. In addition, research revealed that users experienced difficulty completing typical tasks on the site because they were confused by the nomenclature; as a result, the Chamber decided to eliminate jargon and speak to its audiences using their vernacular.
The Chamber also implemented a responsive design to achieve content parity and efficiency of operations on desktop and mobile devices. This powerful design decision allows the Chamber to offer the same high quality content to visitors on mobile devices with no additional cost or effort on the Chamber’s part.
During the first half of 2013, non-desktop traffic only accounted for 12% of total traffic on the site. During the same period of 2014 (the site relaunched in January 2014), this figure more than doubled to nearly 30%. The number of first-time site visitors using mobile devices has also followed suit, increasing from 13% in 2013 to 32% in 2014. Facebook and Twitter are now the top refers to uschamber.com, comprising 25% of total referral traffic, compared to just 9% in 2013.
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