A municipal website is a place where you can showcase the most important elements of your town in a way that is easily accessible for everyone. It’s the place where new events can be announced, where an online community can be built, and where residents can stay informed about their city.
Citizens have high expectations for a digital experience, and governments are no exception. The private sector has set a high bar for customer service and user experience. To exceed the expectations of citizens, the public sector has to be at the forefront of the digital landscape.
Federal, state, provincial and municipal governments are grappling with the demands of today's digital world. Citizens expect rapid delivery of services and the ability to manage their information online. Creating an engaging platform that gives residents a great experience when they need information about their city takes time and effort.
This article will share some of our top 3 tips for building a municipal website. You’ll see the elements you should include and how you can design it to be as effective and informative as possible for your residents.
Tip 1: Give Quick Access to Information
An eye-catching menu can go a long way in helping people easily find the services they need. In the photo below, West Orange county created a Citizen Help Center with quick access to information about reporting important issues in the community and signing up for more news about the county.
This is a good example of what you should add to your municipal website. You may have all the necessary information available on the website, but if it isn’t easily accessible, then it won’t be effective for users.
Make the colours pop and choose an attractive layout on all devices, including mobile phones. You can also emulate a similar layout that New Jersey uses for its municipal website:
With this layout, people looking for government assistance can easily find the information they need by these attractive icons and symbols used to catch their attention. This is way better than simply publishing a long list of services with links
Tip 2: Display Upcoming Events to Increase Engagement
There are many different ways you can approach this. You can announce upcoming events by creating slideshows on the website's landing page or listing all upcoming events for up to a year.
Whatever you eventually choose, it's essential that you design it in a way that will grab their attention and make them want to click the link to learn more.
Better yet, make the upcoming events shareable on social media to increase engagement and hype about community events. Here's an example:
It's important to follow the same principle we discussed in Tip 1: to give them quick access engagingly and attractively. Here's an example of what you shouldn't do:
The words are tiny, and nothing is grabbing your attention to click on the link to learn more about it. They could have used attractive images or GIFs for each event to make it seem like an engaging event to attend.
This doesn't seem like much, but it can make a huge difference in the amount of buzz an event creates just by the way it's presented.
Tip 3: Make Your Landing Page Eye-Catching
Most people won't click on other website pages if they don't sense that the website is well-designed and informative. Make sure that your website doesn't turn visitors off but invites them to learn more about your city and what you have to offer.
Cater to the ever-changing scene of digital marketing and website design by hiring professionals to help you design an eye-catching website.
This will help you reduce high bounce rates and increase traffic to your municipality website. These are just a few of the tips that will set your website apart from the rest designed with little thought to the user experience.