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UD fans encouraged to visit new BlueHens.com athletics website
The University of Delaware Athletics Department has launched the new and improved BlueHens.com website.
The website, easily accessible from the menu on UD's homepage, is now mobile friendly for the first time in history, allowing access from any device, anywhere at any time.
The website has several other new and improved features including:
• A new event schedule bar;
• A fresh new design and refreshed content;
• Improved organization;
More emphasis on videos and visuals;
• A customized Recreation webpage; and
• New social media walls.
The new web presence is built using research and data to ensure it will best meet the needs of UD Athletics’ key online visitors. In particular, there were over 500 responses to a user survey conducted in April 2017, and the feedback was incorporated into the design of the revamped website.
Within the new site, outdated pages have been removed or archived, and some pages have been combined or revamped to provide the best information to the visitor. Any users with a bookmarked page should be redirected to the corresponding new page with the most relevant content.
Additionally, there is a new main menu navigation based on feedback from users that aims to allow visitors to find information they need quickly and accurately. UD Athletics officials encourage fans to review the FAQs below for further detail.
In every website relaunch there will likely be some bugs and glitches as the department works through the kinks of a new website, and UD Athletics thanks users for their patience as it works through this transition. In the meantime, those who have any immediate technical issues can contact Athletics Communications at email@example.com.
“The Athletics Department thanks you for your continued support of the Blue Hens family and we especially thank all of those who took the time to solicit feedback on the website user survey earlier this year,” a representatative said, adding, “We look forward to continuing to grow and evolve to best serve our student athletes and the Delaware community. Go Hens!”
Q: What’s so great about this new website?
UD Athletics: For the first time in history, the bluehens.com website is mobile-friendly. This means that information will be more easily accessible to anyone from anywhere, whether via mobile phone, tablet, laptop or desktop.
Athletics Communications staff is also taking a new approach to the website that is driven by the needs of users with the hope of creating a better virtual experience. Athletics has reorganized the menu, content and look and feel based on user feedback from the survey in April 2017. Outdated content has been removed and new content has been added to better capture the momentum and state of the current athletics program.
Q: Why did we need a redesign?
UD Athletics: Redesigns typically occur every three to five years in order to keep up with the latest technology and provide the best user experience possible. The last website redesign for bluehens.com occurred in 2013. Data and the user survey pointed to issues with the lack of mobile access, as well as user frustration with the inability to navigate to and/or find information on the website.
Feedback also pointed to the desire for a more modern look and feel that reflects the current momentum of the athletics department, and there was a request for more content that celebrates the Blue Hen family at large.
Q: What other new features does the website have?
UD Athletics: The athletics department is excited to announce several new helpful features in line with feedback from our user survey in April 2017:
- New game schedule bar located conveniently at the top of the website for easy access
- New modern look and layout that reflects the momentum and direction of Delaware Athletics
- Improved navigation so users can quickly find and get the information they want
- Customized Recreation webpage for a more seamless user experience
- New social media walls highlighting our teams, student athletes and achievements
- New content series celebrating our student athletes and extended Blue Hen family
- More emphasis on video and visual content
Q: Why can’t I access a page I used to visit?
UD Athletics: As a part of this redesign and based on user feedback, the main menu has been updated to better organize and streamline content. A page a reader used to visit may have been moved under a new menu so officials encourage fans to explore and acquaint themselves with the new navigation.
Additionally, in every relaunch there will likely be some bugs and glitches as officials work through the kinks of the new website. UD thanks fans for their patience as it irons out details in these first few weeks.
Q: Where did a page I bookmarked go?
UD Athletics: Some pages have been combined or revamped to provide the best information to the visitor. Old pages that may have been archived should redirect to the corresponding new page with relevant the most content. What used to be text may now be displayed as a video, photo or infographic. Those with concerns or challenges can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
UD internal staff FAQs
Q: How can my team/staff use the new website system?
UD Athletics: The website is managed by the Athletics Communications team, formerly Media Relations and Multimedia. As the staff grows, Athletics Communications will implement a more standardized process for keeping our website updated and fresh. Stay tuned as Athletics rolls out new procedures to support each of its constituents in the 2017-18 school year. In the meantime, those who have any immediate updates, thoughts or comments can contact their specific sport communication contact (formerly SID). Those who have general comments or concerns beyond sport specific pages can contact Kallie Knop at email@example.com.
Q: What’s the cost?
UD Athletics: Athletics Communications was able to negotiate this redesign free of charge as a part of our current contract with our web provider, Neulion.
Q: How do I submit content ideas or get my team featured on the homepage?
UD Athletics: While the office cannot guarantee coverage given the volume of content the department currently manages, fresh ideas are always welcome. Email any thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: Who has been involved in this project?
UD Athletics: This was a collaborative effort across the department. Dozens of people were interviewed for their feedback and the April 2017 user survey received over 500 responses. The project was led by Athletics Communications with support from across External Relations, the Office of Communications and Marketing, and with content collaboration across the department.
Q: How often will we do a redesign? When will there be another one?
UD Athletics: As a best practice, websites should be redesigned and revamped every three to five years. The previous Bluehens.com redesign was in 2013, and the website was not previously mobile friendly, meaning the user could not navigate the website on mobile phone or tablet causing significant drop off in traffic and user frustration.
Given this, a redesign to be fully responsive was immediately imperative. The current contract with Neulion runs through summer 2018, and the Athletics Communications team is currently assessing web providers to find the best fit for our program going forwards and will handle any transitions at that time.
Q: Who should I contact if my sport/department pages have an issue or need updates?
UD Athletics: The sport communications contact (formerly SID) should be your “go to” for anything website or communications related -- Scott Selheimer, Maggie Hayon, Kevin Tritt and Andrew Stern. They will bring in appropriate support as needed. As the staff grows, Athletics Communications will explore a more standardized process for keeping our website updated and fresh. Stay tuned as new procedures are rolled out to support constituents in the 2017-18 school year.
Article by UDaily staff | December 15, 2017
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