MCCManchester City Council’s new  website, developed in conjunction with Jadu and with additional input from Keep It Usable, was unveiled today, with the team responsible proclaiming they have set a ‘new benchmark for council sites’.

Visitors to the site will certainly find an unusual site as the clear but stark sequential presentation directs them to the service they seek.

The previous site which was four years old, has been completely overhauled, with user experiences dictating how the new version has been created, based on research conducted and tested by a team from research company Keep It Usable.

In addition to the research anchoring the site – which currently attracts around half a million visitors a month – content management company Jadu has also incorporated responsive technology to ensure that users can navigate the site easily on whatever devices visitors are using.

Research carried out suggested that around 80% of visitors came to the site with a  specific search in mind and visitors to the new site are now greeted by icons covering the most searched for subjects and tasks.

Testing of the new site covering a range of focus groups was carried out by research company Keep It Usable, with the site design managed and produced by the comms team at the Council. Jadu oversaw the website’s structure design.

Councillor Nigel Murphy of Manchester City Council, said: “We’ve looked carefully at what residents actually use our website for and redesigned it with their needs in mind. It’s also been tested by real people who tell us that they find it refreshingly easy to use.

“With all councils facing more and more budget constraints and Manchester having been particularly hard hit, encouraging as many people as possible to access services online whenever and wherever they want not only helps residents but also enables us to deliver those services more cost effectively. Having a well-designed website is therefore hugely beneficial.”