Design

Access to Info - stuff the rest.

People go to council websites for information, not for pretty pictures and inflated egos. Forget about branding, forget about any sort of visual consistency. Instead just get the info out there, set out a consistent scheme for URIs and search-relevant features, then leaving everything else to the contributors. Then set up a search page with a truly configurable range of options (e.g. boolean, natlang, regex, ...) and ...more »

Submitted by (@nothanks)
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Design

Attractive design

Good sites have an attractive, modern appearance that invites you to use them. Council sites should be no different.

Submitted by (@danewright)
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2 votes
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Interactivity

Embracing and integrating FixMyStreet on website

And RSS. But maybe I'll post that elsewhere.

Submitted by (@alistair.reid)
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Technology

Develop a web strategy and channel roadmap which enables a gradual transfer to open source

Although many Councils are tied into licensed products which they have invested heavily in, it's worth planning ahead. Open source software offers a great deal of flexibility.

Submitted by (@michele)
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Interactivity

On-line petitions

Allow local residents to initiate petitions to council on the website.

Submitted by (@mikelawper)
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Usability

A user centred design approach

Although the user has been championed elsehwere, I think taking a holistic, iterative user centred approach is key to making a good website (as per the ISO standard 13407). This includes: 1. Defining the audiences and context of use. 2. Researching/defining user needs (using analytics, customer feedback, interviews, surveys, user testing on current site). 3. Designing the user experience based on user needs. 4. ...more »

Submitted by (@michele)
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Interactivity

Meaningful consultations

Encourage interactive interesting discussions about particular elements of a proposal - say, a new Local Plan - rather than shoving a large indigestible document out there and allowing the usual suspects to fire back a single (usually predictable) "response".

Submitted by (@ben.plouviez)
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Data sharing

Live & Podcast important meetings

I know most meetings are considered important by the people in them but rather than just providing PDFs of a meeting it'd be great to be able to listen to the cut and thrust of a meeting as it happened.

Submitted by (@benjaminbrum)
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7 votes
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Navigation

Increased navigation options

LGNL is not user friendly but is important for site indexing.

 

Offer multiple paths to allow users to find what they need quickly.

Submitted by (@alsmith)
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Usability

Design the information architecture to suit your users, not your org chart!

Think about your users - organize information in ways that make sense to them, not in ways that match your organizational structure!

Submitted by (@macusere7)
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Technology

Install a self-serve local ad system to monetise your traffic and add greater service/interaction

I know Newcastle City Council are already toying with the idea, but I may have a way for monetising all that decent traffic such sites generate via a self-serve DIY ad system, www.addiply.com You can see it in beta trail mode on www.TheLichfieldBlog.co.uk where both the local Tory MP, Michael Fabricant, is digitally engaging with his constituents and where Lichfield DC itself is due to follow suit. Beauty of Addiply ...more »

Submitted by (@rickwaghorn)
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Feedback

Make use of analytics and customer feedback

Learn from where your site works well; find out where it doesn't work well and improve it. Make good use of customer feedback and site analytics to identify problems, and customer-focused solutions.

Submitted by (@sharonodea)
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