While we pride ourselves here at VIA for really good web design, sometimes it’s nice to revisit work we’ve already completed. Having a room full of opinionated designers and usability-geeks, it’s inevitable that when we finish a web design, we immediately think of six thousand ways to make it better. Not that we didn’t do a great job the first time around, it’s just impossible to linger on one project.
Havana Beverages upgraded their site last month to include some pretty snazzy Content and Event Management, so we thought it might be a good idea to clean things up a bit.
Below is the “before” version. We were happy with the finished design, and have received many compliments (and hopefully an award or two). After having lived with it for a couple months, the site felt a little busy and graphically “heavy”. We (and the client) felt like we nailed the design from a branding perspective, but we knew with a little more work we could do better.
Now for the “after” version. With just a little “tidying” up, we feel like the design is much lighter and can breathe. The busy is gone and replaced by a much more airy feel. The text is easier to read. We were also able to reorganize the content on the site so that navigation is more intuitive.
One of the aspects of our work that I like to stress is that a website should be thought of as a living, breathing entity. The day you stop taking care of it is the day that your marketing advantage is lost. Many businesses are moving their marketing dollars from traditional advertising to the web, and a refreshed web design is the kind of small improvement that can make a big impact.