Marilyn Lewis originally contacted me because the company that provided her hosting and support (Quantum Web Solutions) had Liquidated, she had seen my blog which offered services to help those who needed support moving and setting up their website on a new hosting provider. This could have been a very bad situation for her, because if the servers had been shut down she would not have had her business any longer since Quantum had not provided her with the software or given her access to her members database.
Once her site was up and stable, she explained to me her plans to improve and expand NarpsUK - It was already doing pretty well and had a good amount of users, but the site was lacking very important functionality and in places looked basic and unprofessional. The first thing I started helping her with was to improve the user profile system, so that users can create a Pet Sitter profile to advertise their business.
The NarpsUK Website was already designed pretty well, but it did require some tweaking to make it more usable, one of the first things I did was to create some definition between each link in the main menu, by placing a border around the options and making them look more like buttons. I also made the "join" option red to emphasise to new users to join the site. Some other changes though were made simply to accommodate new features or to appeal to search engines. Below I have provided some before / after screenshots of some pages I worked on improving just the style, layout and content.
The header is now far easier to follow, you are drawn to the "join" button, and now there are very useful links to all the information about the website.
The footer was a little scary before, with a big dark blue block that filled the whole bottom of the website, also it did not really provide much. I cleaned it up and made it more professional with all the required links that someone may be looking for as well as Social Networking buttons and accepted payment methods which I felt were VERY IMPORTANT for the website.
The Frequently Asked Questions page was rather messy and I found it difficult to follow, so with some simple CSS Styling I managed to make everything stand out a bit more and hopefully help anyone who actually needs some help, while reducing support requests.
I have completely re-written the membership profile system on NarpsUK - it used to be just a bullet point list of options, but now it is a fully featured account page with resources, a profile editor, account status and other important information.
Of course I have also made sure the profile page looks nice to the user and is easy to follow and understand.
The Register page was very neglected and unprofessional - When I first saw the process it really made me wonder what sort of impression it gave to potential customers, I made it my mission to improve the process and also to provide information about the account types, the pricing structures and what payment methods were accepted, before I worked on the site it did not mention accepted payment methods anywhere on the website! The result was a register process that was informative, simple to follow and gave all the important information!