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Branding & Website for Schull.ie

When I volunteered my services to create a new website for my home village of Schull…

I wanted to make amends for designing the previous incarnation of the website back in 2006, which, over time, had become a little bit of an embarrassment. Some had described it as either ‘that horrible red thing’ or ‘that awful site’. It just wasn’t doing its job of attracting new visitors and business to Schull.

Management of the site changed hands in 2008, so I wasn’t going to take full responsibility for its decline as much of what I originally created had been removed, but it was still using the same framework, and I hold my hands up to making the main colour scheme red originally. Sorry!

Much of the content was to remain the same, but the way that content was delivered needed a major rethink. The Schull Business & Tourism Association committee wanted a site that we as a village could be proud of, one that reflected the personality of the village: naturally beautiful, cosmopolitan, eclectic, vibrant and with a ‘je ne sais quoi’. Information had to be easily accessible, searchable and beautifully presented on any device viewing the site.

As initial discussions took place in the website focus group, I had a clear vision forming of what to create and how to tackle it. A responsive site was required with a WordPress engine so that content could be updated and managed easily by any number of volunteers who would look after the site. Areas of interest would be colour-coded and wherever you went on the site, it would offer random suggestions of where you could go next and keep visitors exploring what was available in the area. The site would also rely on photography extensively to get messages across so we were fortunate enough to have Jack & Julia Zagar donate numerous images for us to use. I also got an opportunity to take a few snaps myself during the good weather. Yes, I just want to clarify that in 2013, we had a summer in Ireland…

But for much of the hotter days I was focusing on creating this site. It’s worked out rather well and the feedback that I and the committee have been getting has been overwhelming – we must have got it right this time.

Improvements will ensue over the coming months, including a re-branding of the village (the ‘logo’ for the site was deliberately nondescript) and video footage to be commissioned to properly capture a few of the reasons why Schull is so special.

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