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Web Development Case Study On www.Fashion.ie
- The website would have multiple categories including, fashion news, interviews and agony aunt sections.
- The website would have to automatically manage the articles in each section to display them in a highlighted area on the homepage for 5 days and automatically archive them after 30 days
- The website had to allow multiple writers to login using unique credentials and manage the rights they had to ensure they could only create articles in specific sections.
- The website had to include an approval process to ensure the client could maintain quality and only allow the best articles to be made live
- The website had to manage the uploading of images into multiple areas of differing dimensions
- The website would have to allow certain articles to be tagged as featured and so they would appear in the top banner automatically.
- The website design had to be engaging but simple
- The website had to appear as high as possible on page 1 of Google for the word "fashion"
The design was developed to be appealing, yet simple and structured. Each section had a unique colour assigned which was coded into the functionality of the site, so every article with a light blue border is a "Most Popular" article and dark green is "Get The Look". The design uses highlight areas starting with a large banner at the top with 3 smaller areas to its right. There are also smaller highlight areas for the other main sections of the website. Also incorporated were a number of advertising spaces, which can be used to generate revenues for the site.
The site was coded in two parts:
Back-End Admin System
The back-end system allows writers to login and submit articles using unique credentials. They are able to return and edit any articles that are in "draft" mode. Once they complete an article, they can submit it for review. The "approver" can either accept an article and make it live or reject it for further editing. Once live an article can only be edited by a main admin. The system admin can create and delete writer accounts as required and assign them to one or all sections. They can also create new sections on the site and assign writers to it.
In addition, we had to make the process of uploading images as simple as possible. We therefore built an image optimiser into the system with a cropper tool that allowed the writer/admin to position images for best viewing on the site. This therefore negated the need for writers to have to learn/use 3rd party tools for editing imagery prior to upload.
The front-end had some specific coding that was required. The banner and highlight areas had to randomly pick from the large number of valid articles for each section and display them. This included an image, caption and link to the full article.
We also had to build the system to be SEO friendly. We therefore dynamically create "friendly" URLs using the title of articles as the source. This allows Google to index meaningful content rather than meaningless database references.
Franco De Bonis is a marketing professional with a unique view on the world of marketing and co-owner of The DG Group. Franco has worked in the field of sales and marketing promotion for over 20 years and was most recently the global marketing manager for Creative Labs before setting up The DG Group in January 2007.