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NPP expectations for project websites – Part 2 Kirsti Mijnhijmer 22 April 2009, Copenhagen.

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Presentation on theme: "NPP expectations for project websites – Part 2 Kirsti Mijnhijmer 22 April 2009, Copenhagen."— Presentation transcript:

1 NPP expectations for project websites – Part 2 Kirsti Mijnhijmer 22 April 2009, Copenhagen

2 Summary Part 1  Projects have a communication strategy, which forms an integral part of project implementation  Project websites meet the EU publicity requirements  Project websites focus on project outcomes: products/services:  Attributes are clearly defined (marketing arguments)  Project websites demonstrate what is under development  The operation/cooperation is of secondary importance  Project websites demonstrate the business potential of products/services and by that demonstrate their viability

3 Target Audiences  It is essential for the viability of project outcomes that projects can communicate their products and services to the relevant target audiences (end users/financiers).  Good websites are always designed from the user’s point of view  This means that you need to clearly define your target audiences in order to have a successful message

4 Target Audiences  Different scenarios, different target audiences:  Project website showcases the project: main communication channel  Project website forms platform for main project outcomes: online database, e-learning tool, GIS tool, etc.  Project website is tool for information exchange between partners  Potential target audiences:  End users  Other stakeholders  Policy makers  General public  Financiers  Own organisation

5 What does this mean for Project Websites?  Define the target audiences for your website  Based on your project objectives and communication strategy  Be realistic: you cannot be everything to everyone  Define their goals  Define what it is your target audiences want to find on your website  Which tick boxes do they have in their heads  Your web design should let them know that they are in the right place and that they will get what they want: reassurance  Try to combine their goals with your goals  How to bring them to the next step

6 What does this mean for Project Websites?  Adjust your design: brand  Adjust your writing style  Adjust your content: what do they wish to find/achieve? What do they already know?  Adjust other features: navigation, accessibility, etc.  Tick the boxes: affirm their expectations/needs

7 How to Reassure your Visitors  Scent of goals  Let the user find the trail to what s/he wants to find  Filter information by becoming more specific deeper into your site  Simplicity  More features/elements = more distractions = higher risk of losing visitors  Enough and no more than necessary to reach your goals  Conventions/standards  Are well tested and have proven to be best practice: being different is not always better  Applies especially to layouts, navigation

8 How to Reassure your Visitors  Brand  Sum of everything people perceive when they experience the website  Visitors should quickly understand if they are in the right place  Getability: what is it, what is it for, who is it for  Applies to logo, name, tagline, headings, colours, images, navigation  Layout  Logical relationships between elements: ownership  From general to specific  Static vs. dynamic  Use white spaces and other techniques to make things more noticeable

9 How to Reassure your Visitors  Navigation  Where am I, what options do I have and how do I get there  Optimise intuitive navigation: clear labels, clear logic, connected to goals  Follow the standards: navigation bars should be clearly clickable  Content  A text should also tick boxes in the user’s head: where am I, can I find what I need, etc.  Less is more  Carefully consider the use of pictures: sometimes words are more efficient  Remember the inverted pyramid: most important message at the top, from general to specific

10 Other Expectations  Your website should demonstrate your project’s right to exist  Justify use of tax payers money  Value for money and ROI: for general public but also for investors such as the PMC  Transparency and accountability  Your project website speaks for the programme and for the EU (and Non Member States)  Communication measures are expected to meet a professional standard  Similar to other parts of project implementation

11 What does this mean for Project Websites?  Your website should be more than an online version of your project application/progress report  Focus on (expected) outcomes in return for invested funding  Show that things are ongoing: up-to-date news section, etc.  Make a professional impression: you are an ambassador for the programme and the EU (and Non Member States)

12 Summary  Project websites are adapted to different target audiences:  Project websites keep the goals of their end users in mind  Project websites reassure end users that they will get what they are looking for  Project websites justify the invested funding  Project websites make a professional impression

13 Discussion Points  Who are your real target audiences?  Web design from the user’s point of view: how could you adapt your project website to the expectations of these users?  How could your website justify the funding invested in the project?  Possible discussion of concrete project websites

14 Thank You for Listening!

15 References  “Save the Pixel. The Art of Simple Web Design”, Ben Hunt, 2008

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