David Stewart, VP, Creative Technology Director, Jan 10, 2018

How to Make a Great Website

I’ve worked on a lot of projects in my career, and some just stand out – not because they are the biggest or flashiest, but because they embody everything done right. The LongPoint Minerals website drove home the idea that it takes a lot to build a great website no matter how big or small, and how you do it is just as important as what you do to deliver something exceptional.   

 

And, when you’ve got a great team, with a good strategy, following the right methodology, the results really shine. This was one of those projects, so we wanted to highlight it and talk a little more about how we did it.

 

First, getting to the why

One of the most important things a website can communicate is why you do what you do. For many rural community residents, choosing to sell their lands’ mineral rights is a long-term family decision, and they need to know they can work with a company they trust.  For LongPoint Minerals, we developed a clear brand that targets the audiences with creative and messaging that was really true to the company: trust, respect, integrity, and their word is their bond, and it really is.

 

We really empathized with users 

With user-centered design as our methodology and research as our tool, we created a well thought out user experience that informs users throughout the site with contextual navigation, micro interactions to reveal content, and headlines to inform users of content with calls to action to move them to conversion.  We made the site skimmable and of course responsive for mobile users on the go.

 

But we had to drive business

For the bottom line, from a business perspective, we focused on driving mineral rights leads and servicing investors. The site features a dynamic lead collection form that filters lead prospects to the proper area by locating them by county. 

 

Sometimes less is more

During the UX process, rather than create a huge site with extensive content, we really narrowed down the content of the site and paired it tightly with the UX to achieve the purpose of building relationships and driving prospect leads.

 

Make sure it indexes for search

We planned out and prioritized technically enabling search over optimizing content to start.  We used a detailed SEO checklist to technically enable the site for search and also used the Yoast Plug to ensure metadata was entered based on the specifications. We are now well positioned to focus on a localization strategy to further enhance the SEO onsite content optimization of the site as a next step.

 

Applied a rural but contemporary look

We then took the brand and designed something that fits within that established look – something that feels rural but also feels contemporary with a modern font face that conveys a feeling of a trust in a legitimate scaling business.  The design targeted the rural communities with earth tones, cool blues and relevant, authentic imagery. We then developed an extensive UI kit to create a consistent look and feel throughout the site, which will also be used to guide the feature enhancements to the site.

 

Integration for efficiency

In today’s complex technical world, it pays to accomplish specific tasks more efficiently by integrating 3rd party systems.  First, we integrated with MailGun to facilitate the thousands of emails sent for sign-ups and forms to ensure delivery, then we also integrated with ARC GIS mapping system to display the accurate areas of operation on a dynamic map within the site with real-time data.

 

Secure and scalable delivery

To ensure the delivery of the site, we used managed hosting WP Engine which provided the added cloud security that we needed. We employed SSL encryption to further secure the site transactions. Then we did a security audit to confirm there were no holes, and that we were not passing any secure information without encryption.

 

Takes a team to deliver

To deliver all the technical needs of the site, you need to partner with experts, so we partnered with an experienced WordPress development firm, hosting firm WPEngine, and – most importantly – our client to deliver on this project. And the team really worked well together, a critical component of a successful project.

 

Agile and collaborative management

Finally, we applied an agile management methodology to the project, using Trello to manage all aspects of the site with client access, so it was completely transparent to what was going on at every step of the project to all team members.

 

This is a project that everyone at Karsh Hagan was proud of, from the results it produced to how we worked together to make it come to life. It was a win-win all around, so it felt natural to write a blog about it just to show when you do it right and work together, you really get results. 


Here is the finished product, take a look https://longpointminerals.com/

 

If you want to learn how to do it right, give us a call!

 

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