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Reaching a Town Through the Web

The Town of Whitecourt Alberta is set among miles of picturesque forest, scenic rivers, and untouched landscape – the perfect place to get away from it all. A long-time client of Primal Tribe, through us Whitecourt has seen the development of numerous portal sites designed to reach tourists, council members, and town’s people. When they approached us to do a redesign of the town website, we asked if we could first perform a website audit and access historical data from Google Analytics. As we had suspected, the info revealed that tourists were finding their way to the site meant for residents, and residents weren’t surfing the site at all. Their sitemap and content was not targeted for the right audiences. With a revamp in the works, we pitched an entire reorganization of their site – tailoring it more specifically to towns-folk and creating a clearer portal for tourists. With the new website up and running, we continue to monitor the traffic trends and can see the transformation loud and definite: tourists are now reliably finding their way to the visitors site. The town website saw a steady increase not just in local traffic but also from out-of-towners looking into business development and Whitecourt as a home.

Project Goals

1. Redirect Website Traffic

Although we’ve worked with Whitecourt for over five years, we’ve never had the chance to get our hands into the actual structure and content of their websites. With this redevelopment, we were able to get more involved by using historical data from Google analytics to identify the strengths and shortcomings of their current site. This audit revealed that residents really weren’t using the portal meant for them. Meanwhile, tourists were stumbling across the site and getting lost in the hordes of information meant for locals. To create a solution, we first needed to do our due diligence. We set about performing extensive interviews, talking in depth with town volunteers and councilors to find out exactly what they wanted out of the website. Hours of research were also put into identifying best practices for town sites. Finally, armed with information, we were able to define the proper strategy and help them develop a more logical site map for their new site.

2. Revamp an Online Portal for Town Residents

A full portal redevelopment was just the opportunity Primal Tribe needed to arm Whitecourt with a fun new modern design. We wanted something that would inspire the town’s people to utilize this online resource more. The new site creates a greater focus on things that matter to residents, highlighting items like local events, transit, and seasonal concerns. The reworked site also integrates a 3rd party town management software allowing residents to access information that matters to them through this “Virtual Town Hall.”