This project was a total revamp of yukon.ca’s website. Not only a facelift and content migration, but also content rewriting and editing, a total restructure of the site map and organization, as well as a lot of user research with the Yukon residents to understand what their needs were.

It started with interviewing a group of residents to understand how they were using the old site, and finding out what their pain points were. We found that the old site had been structured to more suite the needs of the Government staff, rather the actual citizens who were using it. For example, if a citizen was looking for a camping permit, the old site had it categorized under ‘Environmental’ yet most users were looking for it in ‘Permits’. 

This led to a lot of lost and confused users, and more incoming calls to Government staff, asking for their help, therefore costing the staff extra time and money.

We decided to restructure all the categories in a way that made sense to the user. We used ‘card sorting’ exercises that users could put into groups. Asking them questions like “If you came to the site, where would you expect to find Road Conditions?” and had them sort it from there.

That is how we came up with our 16 Categories. The first 4 you can notice at the top of the page, are largest, because they are most popular and most searched for. So therefore given visual hierarchy and more prominence on the page. The site is meant to be task based. Meaning, the user comes to the site to complete a certain task, such as obtaining a license, a permit, or finding out Environmental risks such as snow storms or bear safety. 

The visual look of the site was a also a big challenge, because of the internet connectivity in the Yukon, which does not have very fast speeds, therefore having large images load on their site was not an option, and would definitely cause frustration for users with slow internet connections. Therefore, I took a minimalistic approach, and used very basic SVG icons to represent each category in a way that was recognizable, even to non native English speakers. This gave a visual cue to what each category stood for, but was also very quick to load on the page.

The branding colours, and the ‘Aurora’ in the top right of the page, were done by another agency, including the new ‘Yukon’ logo with the yellow sun and mountains. But it was my task to incorporate these elements visually into the site. This minimalistic, and simple approach was easy for users to navigate, and loaded quickly for them as well, two of the most important goals.

In the end, more user testing was performed and overall we received positive feedback from users who said the new site was much easier to use, and they had much less trouble performing tasks on the new site. It was a big win for our team, and we were very proud we could help them!

ClientYukon GovernmentYear2017 - 2018Linkhttp://www.yukon.ca