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4 Mar
Posted by Jane

Rising to the top: Bigger, better, stronger website launched for Rise Network

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The journey

We’re proud to have worked with Rise Network since their name change from Hills Community Support Group in 2012. The organisation has evolved and grown extensively in this period – taking some pretty challenging changes in their stride.

The original website we designed and built was always created as a stage 1 and was not responsive by choice. Rise Network wanted to spend the rest of the allocated budget on staff training and support on how to engage with their clients using the website, Twitter and Facebook – something which was a big success and continues to pay off.

In the first 6 months of the original site, the traffic increased 400% and the site worked really well to explain how people could access services and enabled people to get in touch with the right people. The website earned its keep.

The changing landscape

Over time, as program funding changed and their services broadened, both our team and Rise Network could see the site needed to change in structure and design to enable the content to go deeper. We recognised this early and plan ahead. This is only because we made the time to meet every 4-5 weeks to review the analytics, conversions and content in a WIP (work in progress) meeting from the day the initial site launched.

planning for change

We held content audit meetings with Rise staff and then proposed a new site map and structure. This was put to the board and the staff and then approved to be designed and built.

designing and building a new website

Over the next 3 months, designs were put together and content was collated by our team and the Rise marketing crew.

The following 3 months, saw the site being built and then filled with content section-by-section, with special attention being paid to the new engagement section, ‘How Can I Help‘ where stories showcase the benefits for businesses and individuals to volunteer time or donate funds.

The result has been a huge success and the site has grew in ranking and prominence from the day it was re-launched last month.

The key features are:

what’s next? the beginning of a new chapter

Rise Network has and continues to understand how important it is to invest in the digital positioning of their brand and we thank them for continuing to work actively with us as a cohesive team.

Today we are celebrating the new site with launchcake, drinks and nibbles – but that’s not the end of the project. It’s the beginning of a new chapter. Next week we plan the next stage for Rise’s digital journey.

Want to hear what Rise have to say about their website? Read their website launch blog.

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4 Mar
Posted by Jane

Nexxis delivers new site to make it easier to rent, buy or hire inspection equipment to a broader global market

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Nexxis was introduced by another client more than 6 months before we began this project because they were finding that their website didn’t serve their market and they were at a loss to what to do next.

After many meetings and much discussion, it was clear that there was a disconnect and the only way forward was to reconsider the site structure, content and purpose.

The outcome was a site that they feel explains their process better and lets people explore products by both industry and use. Their quote form is also far more simple yet effective.

As with any digital project, the launch is just the beginning. But of course, it’s always great to celebrate!

 

4 Mar
Posted by Jane

Diabetic Foot Australia kicks into action

We are proud to announce the launch of the Diabetic Foot Australia website. This project is a key initiative of the Wound Management Innovation CRC and aims to address the silent epidemic of diabetic foot ulcers via a national clinical research diabetic foot network.

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The Queensland-based team selected Clever Starfish because we have extensive experience in the health sector and due to the success of working with local providers in their network. We loved working with this team and as expected, distance was no problem thanks to Skype.

The site has only recently gone live but is still in early stages so stay tuned and be sure to sign up to their mailing list.

You can visit their site here: https://diabeticfootaustralia.org/

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4 Mar
Posted by Jane

Painted Dog launches fresh new site filled with personality

Painted Dog Research is a leading provider of market research. They wanted to update their unique but tired site with a fresh responsive design full of fun, animation and personality.

Painted Dog WordPress website relaunched by Clever Starfish

Painted Dog WordPress website relaunched by Clever Starfish

For more about this website, check out our project page or visit their new website for the up-close and personal experience.

 

8 Oct
Posted by Jane

Delicious win in the ‘Startup’ website category for The Grubb Hub

We’re proud to announce that The Grubb Hub website won a WA web award last night and is now in the running for an Australian Web Award. Stay tuned!

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8 Oct
Posted by Jane

Crime Stoppers WA website wins state website award and makes the finals for the Australian Web Awards in ‘Not For Profit’ Category

Last night at Spacecubed, the Crime Stoppers WA website was announced as a finalist in the ‘Not For Profit’ category of the Australian Web Awards.

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Crime Stoppers WA came to us last year looking for a new website that would allow them to;

  • balance the support role provided for WA Police whilst establishing that Crime Stoppers WA is an independent not-for-profit organisation serving the community.
  • provide a way to encourage both online reports and phone calls to help solve crimes.
  • establish their position as a not-for-profit organisation.
  • clearly explain who they are and what they do.
  • clearly explain the kind of crimes that Crime Stoppers work in preventing and solving alongside the relevant authorities.
  • define crime types and provide prevention tips.
  • provide a clear pathway to the online reporting form and explain when it should be used.
  • make reporting phone number easily accessible and educate users on when to use it.
  • increase opportunities for community to engage with Crime Stoppers as a volunteer or advocate or sponsor.
  • increase exposure for sponsors across the site.
  • ensure the site worked across all devices.
  • Ensure the brand is positioned to communicate directly with community members in Western Australia.
  • encourage action from the community by reporting suspicious activity.
  • encourage action from the community by reporting information that relates to the open cases.
  • encourage participation from kids in school years 7, 8 and 9 via the competition entry.

We freshened and updated the look, feel, content and structure with the result for the client has been a huge lift in engagement, reports and positive recognition.

As quoted by Mara from Tinderbox, one of our collaborators, “It takes a village to build a website” and for this site it couldn’t be truer. We couldn’t have delivered such an outstanding website without the collaboration of;

  • Tinderbox Creative for the Graffiti Action Challenge sub site and brand and for Crime Stoppers Week materials.
  • The Write Words for written content and advice us on photos, where relevant.
  • Fasthit for security planning, execution and ongoing monitoring.

It’s been an award-winning week for Crime Stoppers WA, as they were also presented with 5 media awards at the Crime Stoppers International conference. Awesome work!

The national web awards will be held later in the year, so stay tuned.

8 Oct
Posted by Jane

Our ‘Bold’ Project for Bold Park Community School wins a web award in the education category

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BPCS is an independent community school in Wembley is a school that stands out from the crowd. It really is the school you wish you went to and where children thrive. At the end of the day, when we would meet to talk through designs and content, it was clear that the kids didn’t want to leave the grounds. Instead they wanted to play in the garden tunnels and climb the trees.

By all accounts they produce well-rounded and high achieving people—teaching them how to be good humans, not just how to do math – as we experienced first hand by hosting Jacob as a work experience kid for a few months as part of his study.

Despite initial concerns that we had not done a school website, it was clear we were all on the same page and we began our digital journey – which last night culminated in the presentation of a WA Web Award, which takes us to the national finals.

Here’s some screen captures of the site:

Bold Park School Home Page Design

Bold Park School Programs layout

As you can expect, it needed to be a hands on approach with real photos and content that was produced by teachers and kids. We also got to speak to parents and be part of the greater community.

Photography at Bold Park

Trevor taking photographs for the website to ensure that the real picture is portrayed.

 

Bold Park Website launch

The ribbon is cut and website unveiled on a parents open morning

We really enjoyed working on this project and can’t wait to see if takes out the national Australian Web Award in its category. Watch this space.

1 Apr
Posted by Jane

A Beginner’s Guide to demystifying the internet: “How search works” by Matt Cutts from Google

We’ve just had a huge month of new site launches and this means we’ve been talking a lot about content, 301 redirects, links, tracking and Google Analytics to clients.

Rachel, one of our fabulous designer/developers here made a really good point that sometimes clients don’t really understand why the content, redirects and links are so important. She makes a good point! To solve this problem, she suggested sharing this video with new and existing clients. It’s an oldie but a goodie. Check it out…

11 Nov
Posted by Jane

Finding your perfect match: a guide to choosing a company to design your new website

In my past life, I was a client of Clever Starfish and many other agencies and spent a great deal of my time sifting through website and digital quotes for employers and clients. I was given the task of shortlisting and/or ‘decoding’ what website companies were offering and why the cost of a website seemed to vary so much.

As I am now a quoter and not a recipient, I thought it might be helpful to share my personal approach (and opinion) to making the right choice for you and your company.

So where do you start?

Good question! From the hundreds of websites I have been involved in (as a client, supplier, collaborator, representative of the client) the most successful websites were produced by a website company with passion in what they do and show a true interest in your business challenges and goals with the talent to back it up. To find these companies you should Google, ask friends, ask colleagues and find sites that you like. I suggest that you get at least two quotes.

The checklist below is designed to help you once you have a shortlist of companies you think might be a good match.

The checklist is suitable for individuals, boards, committees and groups who need to make a choice on supplier with little or no knowledge of web projects.

If the final decision is in the hands of a group who don’t get to meet the supplier they should be able to use the checklist against the shortlisted quotes. All the decision makers need to know is what your company needs and what sort of supplier would suit you to provide this service. Easy, right? Well it is easi-er, with this checklist!

Part 1: Basic skills checklist

I promise you that the right company will demonstrate that they have considered your unique business challenges and should include some of these proposed solutions in the document. They should be a yes for at least 5 of the 6 questions below to make it to the next checklist.

  1. Have they included a suggested site map and does it look suitable for you?
    If yes, this shows that they have taken the time to consider the structure of your website.
  2. Have they identified your business problems and suggested appropriate solutions?
    For example, they have may suggest functions, features and sections. If yes, this shows they are focused on solving your business problems and not just making you a ‘pretty web brochure’.
  3. Are they a personality match for you?
    This should be reflected in the way they have communicated the quote and how they dealt with the quote process.
  4. Is their business approach a match to you?
    This should be reflected in the way they interact with you and their methodology or process. For example, if you like to work face-to-face and deadlines are your thing, did they come and meet anyone in the team and did they communicate well and meet all the deadlines? The approach to the quote process is often demonstrative of how they will continue to work with you.
  5. Have they demonstrated that they can design great websites?
    You can often view these on their website portfolio or can be found by Googling the company name.
  6. Have they been awarded for their websites?
    If yes, this may show that they are practicing good design and development that is endorsed by peers and experts. If not, sometimes its worth asking if they enter their sites in awards. Some companies do not choose to enter their sites.
    *For reference, the Australian Web Awards is the most prestigious award in Australia.

Part 2: Budget and priority checklist

Web design companies vary in focus and expertise. The best companies have a balanced approach to content, design, development, project management, testing and training.  Quotes usually reflect the balance of their skill set. A new website needs to have a holistic and balanced approach. A rejuvenation of a website might need a little bit of a different balance, depending on the issues that are being overcome.

  1. What is the balance of design, development, project management, testing and training? Are they too focused on one area at the expense of another?
    This can help you to compare the approach each company will take to your project and make sure it with the weighting of what you see as your problem areas. If you don’t know your problem areas, look for a balanced quote.
  2. What is their ongoing hourly rate?
    Sometimes the rate for the website build is low but the ongoing “maintenance” rates are very high and part of a 12-month contract. This may work for you, but in my personal experience it doesn’t.
  3. Have they included enough time to design a unique solution for your needs?
    A low percentage of the overall budget is reflective of design being a low priority.  This often means they intend to reuse a template for your site, which can be restrictive. To work this out, compare the actual hours (budget divided by hourly rate) being put to design for each web design company.
  4. Have they quoted for a responsive website that adapts the layout, content and interactions to the needs of tablets and mobile phones?
    This increases the cost of a website by 20-40% so check that this is included in their fixed quote if this is a priority for you. Also, confirm that they have completed responsive site design projects before as this is a specialised skill set. Get them to explain what a responsive entails for them and what they have included. There are so many ways of designing and building responsive websites so be prepared.
  5. How do ‘apples’ compare with ‘apples’?
    There is always a huge variation in costs for websites and the solutions put forward can vary.  This is normal. When looking at the overall cost, try and compare a few features or skill sets to get a sense of how they quote. Cheaper quotes may have missed out features and more expensive ones are sometimes not tailored to your needs and are a broad stroke solution.  If in doubt, most web companies will be happy to take 30 mins to present their quote to you and explain their approach.
  6. Is their quote a fixed quote?
    There are many companies that offer packages, estimates and other approaches which are often rounded to $8,000 or $10,000 or $12,000. These aren’t always fixed. Be wary of anything with the word estimate UNLESS you feel they are the perfect match in every other way. You don’t want to find yourselves making a decision on price when they aren’t a match in any other ways for your website and regretting it later.
  7. What happens after the website is launched?
    It’s important to understand what ongoing services are offered (for example: further design, content, backups, maintenance, additional development, strategy, content support and site performance reporting) and what the ongoing costs could be.

You will notice that the question “does this quote fit my budget” isn’t in the checklist. This is because quotes are often flexible. If they match the rest of the checklist, you should be able to approach them to discuss their costs.

Part 3: Customer Service checklist

Web design companies don’t all have a single person that is responsible for your project. If you want someone to help you through the process, make sure there is a person and budget allocated to this. Many web companies don’t offer this as a service because it raises the cost. If you want a person looking out for you from the inside, choose a company that cost this out as a service.

  1. Check that they have included a budget (or enough budget) for a dedicated project manager
    This is not a sales person, designer or developer. This is an account manager, project manager (or producer) with training in this area. Many agencies do not see project management as a priority, but having a project without a manager will lead to delays and possible miscommunication.
  2. What do their clients say about them?
    It’s really important to get a list of references and make some phone calls because good relationships make the project a positive and fun experience for everyone involved. If the person was recommended, approach the referee and ask if they are customer-focused and not just after a “sales success”. Social media is a good place to see if a company has advocates if you are too shy or time-poor to call references.
  3. What was the experience like during the quote process?
    Did/would they come and meet the team to quote and who do you deal with? Is it a sales person or account manager or designer/developer direct? Many agencies send out a sales person and then move the project to a junior once the quote is approved. Be sure of how their process works.

So that’s it! Good luck and may you find your perfect match :)

3 Nov
Posted by Jane

Clever Starfish Wins AWIA eCommerce Award for Just In Time Gourmet

We are so happy to be the recipients of the 2014 Australian Web Award in the eCommerce category for Just In Time Gourmet!

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Other winners this year were The Western Australian Museum, Tim Oliver, Humaan, Juicebox Creative, Moble and Clarity Communications.

We are so proud of this site and did a full wrap up of why WE love it in our WA Award blog. Thank again to all those who support us, our clients whom we love to work with and agencies that collaborate with us.

 

 

10 Oct
Posted by Jane

Clever Starfish receives WA Web Award for Just In Time Gourmet and makes finals for the Australian Web Awards

On Wednesday night, some of the gang here strolled down from our new office in Money Street (moving in party coming soon!) to enjoy the Australian Web Awards State event. It’s a great opportunity to say hello to our peers, competitors and friends – something which is a bit of a rarity, making this night a not-to-miss event. It never fails to reaffirm the ever-increasing standard of award-winning websites in WA!

We had 6 sites up for awards including Fly By Night and My Emporium featured below, all of which we are very proud – something that we celebrated before heading to the awards.

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My Emporium

It was just icing on the #LaunchCake to win an e-commerce award for Just in Time Gourmet!

Just In Time Gourmet Website

You can read all about it in our launch blog for the site, when you have a moment.

The spread of recipients was broader this year (which was great!) and included Hancock Creative, Bam Creative, Juicebox Creative, Longtail, The WA Museum, Humaan, Clarity Communications, Tom Oliver and Jesse Yuen.

Although winning an award on the night is great recognition for the work we are putting out, we still find the biggest reward is feedback from the client that the site has made the impact we planned together, which in this case included the following;

For the Just In Time Gourmet customers

  • increased efficiency for searching and finding products and hampers
  • fuss-free and error-free ordering of loose products and pre-made hampers
  • the ability to add more than one recipient address to an order
  • the ability for a customer to build their own hamper
  • all of the above to be simple, easy and intuitive on a phone, tablet or computer

For the Just In Time Gourmet team

  • easy management of orders and streamlined payment processes
  • easy syncing of products and orders with MYOB
  • flexible and fuss-free management of products, categories and product features
  • enjoyment not pain, when doing anything with the site
  • build in SEO-friendly layout with flexible and easily-editable content

To hear their thoughts on the website and experience with us, check out their blog,  “Congratulations Clever Starfish”.

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23 Jun
Posted by Haley

An Out of the Box Hamper Solution Delivered for Just In Time Gourmet

Who doesn’t like receiving gifts? What’s more, gifts packed full of foodie treats? Just In Time Gourmet’s products and hampers are truly divine and yes, we’re speaking from experience!

We had the privilege of working with this family business and owners Jodee and Justin Wearne to redesign and develop their new website. The existing site had been tarnished with black hat SEO and outsourcing by a local provider so Jodee and Justin very cautiously handed their baby over to us.

The new responsive website showcases some exciting features.

Just In Time Gourmet Home Page

Our primary goal was to promote Just In Time Gourmet’s 3 core services: Individual Products, Hampers and Create Your Own Hampers. This was achieved by creating a primary and secondary navigation, you’ll see that the site actually has a quite a few pages but these have been streamlined into tidy menus all accessible from the home page. Customers are able to shop for one of these services or combine all three. The process of this is key and is explained quite simply on the Create Your Own Hamper page.

We cleverly transformed our cart and checkout system and created a super cart (My Order) that allows custom packages to be created. Customers can purchase individual hampers, customise Just In Time Gourmet hampers or create their own hampers. These orders are collated all within the My Order page and makes the ordering process nice and easy.

Also unique to Just In Time Gourmet’s checkout is the ability to send orders to numerous delivery addresses. This means that I can spoil myself with some truffles and create my own hamper with only the products that my family like in Melbourne – no olives, no crackers and definitely no turkish delights! The bonus is that my truffles will be delivered for free! because free shipping applies to orders within Perth Metro. Win win!

Ah, the beauty of Tentacle! It has the wonderful ability of adapting to our clients needs and means we can create the perfect solution for the day-to-day operation of any business. It makes life so easy and earns us lots of points – it’s out of the box hampers made easy!

We think you’ll agree, the website is beautifully designed and totally functional. We’d love to hear your thoughts but most of all we encourage you to visit the site, who knows this maybe the perfect gift for the next birthday, thank you or get well gift that you need to buy.

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