Redesigning the website of our client with a well-established brand was a very important and responsible task. Since 2003, “Twój Lekarz” has been creating a network of modern medical clinics within the Wrocław Agglomeration. Currently, the network includes 11 specialist clinics, and the brand "Twój Lekarz" is locally recognized and appreciated by many patients - the clinic's neighbors. These are the addressees of the brand's clear message: "Twój Lekarz" - is your health care provider in the immediate vicinity.
Facing the challenge of completely redesigning an existing website, we wanted to build a coherent visual message translating into high usability (UX) of the website. Modernity, but not "corporate character" - after all, the brand operates locally among the local community of communes where the network of clinics is located.
I will try to present the analytical and creative process that we have applied during the reconstruction of our client's website so that it could fulfill the tasks expected from it. A well-functioning website tailored to a given brand is not only beautiful graphics and a layout full of animations, but a tool supporting the company's operation and achieving its business goals.
Let's get started.
Main goals of the Website Redesign
Our client expected a redesign of the layout of his entire website and the possibility of editing the website on their own. It was supposed to become more readable, also on mobile devices, and also be a user-friendly knowledge base aimed at patients.
The entire information architecture needed to be reconstructed in order to efficiently handle three basic streams of visitors to the site with a specific intention:
- current patients
- future patients
- doctors on their career path
On the other hand, the website was also to become a base for informational activities in the digital environment; in social media channels and in paid advertising channels. This is to say, the website should help build brand credibility, thus supporting marketing activities.
Website redesign - facts, not myths
As part of the redesign of the website of the "Twój Lekarz" brand, we designed 74 subpages, including the home page and a specialized page for ordering electronic prescriptions, which was to become an important element supporting the operation of the clinic during the impending pandemic.
In critical moments of lock-downs, the e-prescription ordering site relieved the clinic's call centre, ensuring the possibility of ordering e-prescriptions around the clock, thus making it possible for people in urgent need to call the clinic.
- 74 subpages designed
- Over 37 WordPress plugins analyzed
- Over 150 GB of data backups created
- Mobile version of the site created
- The possibility for the client to edit and manage the layout of the websites
- Adaptation of the existing content (texts and graphics) to the new site
— Why did we analyze almost forty WordPress plugins?
WordPress is a CMS with over 20% of the world's internet sites. The popularity of WordPress results, among other things, from the fact that it is easy to extend the capabilities of this content management system with new functionalities using external plugins.
Unfortunately, a number of plugins are written in a sloppy manner and at odds with WordPress guidelines, which at best slows down page loading and even impairs the security of the site. Our goal was to reduce the number of unnecessary plugins installed. When checking plugins, we wanted to find answers to the following questions:
- Is the given plug-in updated frequently (abandoned plugins often become a backdoor for malware)?
- Is the plugin compatible with the latest version of WordPress?
- Does the plug do its job?
- Is the plug-in necessary for the website to function?
- Is the plug-in irreplaceable, e.g. by modifying the WordPress Child Theme?
If the answer to all of the above questions was "Yes" then the plugin could be left unchanged. Thus, we have removed over 50% of unnecessary plugins, which in the majority of cases were an accumulation of previous website modifications by various developers.
The course of design works
Thanks to the process approach, we knew exactly what stage we were at and we were able to effectively communicate internally and with the client, meeting the deadlines of the next milestones. For project management, we used standard tools that we use on a daily basis, i.e. the Trello kanban board and the ASANA task manager / CRM.
The course of work was divided into four main stages:
- Website audit along with the analysis of internet traffic data collected by Google Analytics.
- Development of mockups of the home page and subpages.
- Implementation of mockup designs.
- Launching the site on the client's server.
Audit of the website and its back-end
The audit of the redesigned website was carried out both from the side visible to the user and from its backend. The audit consisted in analyzing the website in terms of usability (UX design) on mobile devices and computers. Going through all the navigation elements of the page made it possible to prepare an effective logic of navigation on the site.
Information on user behavior on subpages as well as their demographics was also collected and analyzed. Data on the operating systems used also came in handy in making an informed choice of design solutions for the new website.
As for backend, all plugins used have been analyzed in terms of their compatibility, security and functionality. The configuration of the hosting server was also verified.
Armed with the conclusions of the post-audit data analysis, we started redesigning, or actually designing, the client's website.
Development of page mockups
We started developing the mockups of the main pages of the website by focusing on the appearance and functionality of the home page. It is the leitmotif of the entire website and the shape of the remaining pages will depend on the solutions used on the new home page. Before we started designing, however, we focused on the choice of the colour palette.
Choosing the colour palette of the designed website
Proper selection of the colour palette is an important factor in user experience design. According to the theory of color, different colors, like music, can incoke diametrically different feelings among the viewers. For example, red is a very warm color. We associate it with fire, violence, but also love. Red color can induce somatic changes in the human body, such as, for example, an increase in blood pressure, an increase in the frequency of breathing, and it can also increase metabolism. That is to say, red is a strong color that raises a kind of alarm in us.
Therefore, you should carefully choose colors for the design of websites dedicated to a given industry. We used the tools available in the Adobe Colors package to generate the color palettes. Adobe Colors.
Blue, on the other hand, represents peace, responsibility and professionalism. Light shades of this color promote friendly associations, and navy blue inspires confidence. The blue colour and its various tones are clearly associated with medics, which is why in the new design of the website of the "Twój Lekarz" brand, we chose a blue color palette also including branding colors, along with a complementary accent of pink, referring to the fact that the website is used mainly by women , which resulted from the traffic demographics audit on the website.
Redesign, i.e. redesigning an existing website
The old website provided a lot of information in popups, which was not the best solution from the point of view of website usability, especially on mobile devices. We wanted the new website to be clear and legible and to guarantee trouble-free finding of the desired content. We started designing the appearance of the website by checking the data to find out who and how is using it.
Thanks to the preliminary audit, we knew that 68% of website traffic is generated by women from the 25-44 age segment. We already knew that we design the interface mainly for women who use smartphones, so the website had to not only look beautiful, but also work well on mobile devices.
In our project, we decided to use simple, geometric shapes that will not surprise users looking for information.
The home page consists of a double menu with drop-down lists in individual categories, an information header about the "Twój Lekarz" brand, and three rectangular containers containing the most important information from the patient's point of view. The three-container theme is repeated on each page and combines both information and navigation elements.
We proposed a top menu consisting of two clearly separated parts. The upper part adjacent to the brand identification that includes strong CTAs for telephone registration and online registration.
The lower bar is divided into two thematic categories with a drop-down menu. The first section, on the left, is dedicated to the patient, the second section - information and contact.
The old version of the website basically did not have a footer, which is an often underestimated element of communication with the user. Meanwhile, a properly selected menu in the footer significantly supports user navigation on the site, as well as supports the SEO of the entire site.
Communication with the client
During the design process, thanks to the trust our client placed in us, we had a lot of creative freedom. However, we remained in constant contact while consulting key changes to the project.
The target menu used on the website is the second iteration of our original proposal, containing modifications that were important from the client's point of view (as a standard, the design proposal includes two modification iterations without incurring additional costs).
Redesigning an existing website is a big challenge. On the one hand, it is connected with proposing a new quality, at the same time taking into account the experience and the habits of regular website users.
Website redesign - strategic value for the brand
In the above case in particular, the redesign of the website had an additional impact during the successive waves of the COVID19 pandemic. During lockdowns, patients could and still can conveniently find the information they are looking for about the clinics, the doctors working there and the services they provide.
What's more, during the spikes in the traffic volume on the website caused by the pandemic situation, patients were able to order e-prescriptions through a dedicated subpage. Before the redesign, orders were handled by e-mail, which resulted in a lot of unconfirmed messages and regular spam. Handling such mail caused many problems, which were solved by connecting the order form with a dedicated e-mail address.
This simple system also proved its worth during a telephone system failure, ensuring constant access to the possibility of ordering e-prescriptions to patients in need, and the service of the Twój Lekarz clinic efficiently managing the incoming e-prescription orders. Once again, it was confirmed that it is worth investing in new solutions that, even by automating part of the process, support the efficient operation of the organization.