Web Design for Government Agencies

Tips and best practices for government website design

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What Should a Government Agency's Website Look Like?

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If you operate an agency for the government, you know that your website is of the utmost importance to the way you are perceived. Those who visit your website gain an impression of the government and your operation based on how well it is designed, organized, and navigated.

The biggest problem with web design, though, is that trends come and go. Websites tend to get outdated, and if they're not kept up with, they may easily begin to look old or even untrustworthy. That's why it's crucial to keep up with web design standards for your government website.

If you're already considering a redesign, you may want to read these tips. Web design for government agencies can be challenging, but there are some best practices you can follow to make the process easier.

The Importance of Organization

When a new visitor comes to your agency's website, they are probably looking for something specific. Maybe they're trying to find information on your agency and what you do. Maybe they're looking for a way to get in touch with you. No matter what their goal is, your website's design should meet their needs.

Organization is a crucial aspect of your site's design. In fact, your design should be based on your organization—not the other way around. The better organized your information and website is, the more likely it is that you will be able to direct visitors to the appropriate portion of your site.

Keep your information organized in a sensible fashion, and limit the amount of choices that visitors have to make to avoid confusing them or even distracting them. You can accomplish this by reducing the number of options in your menu, keeping your pages limited to one topic or resource, and limiting the number of links you place on each page.

Clear, Easy to Understand Design and Navigation

Along with the organization of your content, you should also pay attention to the way your website can be navigated, and the visual elements presented there. Government websites don't have to be boring, but they also have a standard to uphold. Because of this, your navigation and other on-page elements should be simple, clean, and extremely easy to understand.

For example, rather than place a large graphic on your homepage that has links on it to other pages, you should simplify the navigation by adding a menu to the top of every page. This will make it much easier for visitors to get to the pages they need in less time.

You should also keep in mind that visitors of every age and background will be on your government website. It's for this reason that your design should be very easy to understand. Your fonts should not be small or difficult to read, images should serve a purpose instead of simply taking up space, and you should title the pages in your navigation as simply as possible—for example, "Contact Us" instead of "How to Get in Touch."

Reliance on Authentic Photos and Media

Finally, there are fewer things that reduce a website's credibility more than free, out-of-date, or unrealistic stock photos. If you don't already have photographs of your employees, location, or related items, you may be tempted to use stock photos instead. However, this can set unrealistic expections, or even confuse website visitors.

If you do use photography on your website, aim to use authentic photos or videos of your agency. This will immediately show visitors that you can be trusted, and are open about who you are and what you do. This can also set more realistic expectations, especially for those who may be planning to visit you in person.

These best practices are just a few ways that you can make your government's website design live up to today's standards. If your site is outdated and in need of a refresh, we can help! Contact us online today to find out how we can build a website for your agency that is attractive, well-organized, and authentic.

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