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Saint Mary’s College redesigns website

Anna Boarini | Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Saint Mary’s launched its redesigned website Saturday after over four years of research contributed to the site’s facelift.

Junior Kaley Braunsdorf said her first impressions on the new site are positive.

“The website seems easier to navigate,” Braunsdorf said. “It’s nice to have something new.”

Karen McDonald, assistant vice president of marketing communications, said the original site launched in 2007 and over the last four years, a dedicated team collected data to improve the College website.

“We have in the last four years been doing research on prospective students and their parents, to see how they use the website during their college search,” McDonald said. “We also use Google analytics, which [director of web and interactive communication] Daniel [Miller] has used to figure out what’s working and what’s not working.”

Miller said one of the main goals of the website redesign was to make information for prospective students more visible on the sight.

“Our primary goal was, based on our research on prospective students, to present information in a better manner,” Miller said. “We made more specific sections for both prospective students and their parents more prominent, but also made specific content areas for professors and current students more prominent.”

McDonald said another goal of the redesign was to make the website more interesting and effective.

“We looked a lot at our institutional peers and how they present their websites,” she said. “This told us we had opportunities for how we could more effectively and interestingly utilize the sight.”

The new website also features links to Facebook and Twitter for the College.

McDonald said the change will help students, faculty and members of the Saint Mary’s community navigate the page with ease.

“We really didn’t feel that the old design perspective gave you a place of what Saint Mary’s was,” she said.

McDonald said now the site is very clean and streamlined.

“After four years, a site tends to get a little muddled,” she said.

Senior Becky Johnson noticed the change and said it was for the better.

“It’s nice that there is a major page, which is huge,” Johnson said. “It was hard to find before, and it allows incoming students to see what Saint Mary’s has to offer.”