Sacramento Public Library
Tried to have everything that everybody ever wanted. Much of the content was out of date. Grid of 15 pictures; hard to tell what some of them were, much less what was new. When they went to revise it, there were pages they didn’t even know they had. 10 navigation links with layers and layers below that. Completely separate version of the site for mobile users. In-house CMS. All of the branches could and did make their own pages with their own styles.
Now: Responsive design for mobile and desktop. Prominent catalog search, because that’s what many people come to do. You can spend more time on your content if you don’t have to maintain your web site in two different places. Many people will check both, so it’s good to have a consistent look. New content is always popular: e-books, summer reading club (all online), events. Be focused on what people come to your web site to do (studies in Library Journal and Pew).
Workflow: Use Kentico CMS. Someone needs to make sure web pages are consistent, when they should be posted, when they should be taken down. CMS lets them enter a news item once and have it show up wherever it’s supposed to (such as the kids’ page).
Digital collections, including video. Video is an important part of the World War II collection.
Chose Flash as the standard format. Adobe said it would stop supporting mobile devices. People using i-devices wouldn’t get it at all. HTML 5 is on the radar.
Made a template. Some consistent elements. (On other sites they looked at, the same feature would appear in different places on different pages.)
Different browsers would have different video errors. Problems with certain plugins (e.g., Google Maps).
Just because you can do it doesn’t mean you should. You could 30-40 events going off on a web page, but user would probsbly be overwhelmed,
Use local script files. If you link somewhere else, they could be moved and your app will break.
Question about competition for space on the home page: Have a committee with representation from different depts. Sac Public uses Open Hallway to manage user testing.