Got Centerpiece? So Does Everyone Else.


Higher ed has a problem with its websites. Many of us are past that first big hump of “The Millennial Redesign.” We’ve plopped down money on a shiny new CMS. Our design is hip and groovy. But an issue snuck in when we weren’t looking. Centerpieces have become a staple component of the ever important home page. The problem is that they have homogenized us. We’re all doing it, and we’re all doing it the same. This presentation will look at a number of sites and their centerpieces, look at common themes, address why our current trend is a problem, and make suggestions as to where we can go and what we can do to stand out and differentiate ourselves.

Michael Fienen, Director of Web Marketing, Pittsburg State University


My Notes

– in 2000 we were wild, do it
– in 2010 we have committees, brand guides, hurdles
– now we’re normalized: dilution
– jquery, 960gs, cms all dilute technology
– we are creating industry homogeny

Centerpieces have 3 things

– visual
– informational
– story tellers
– (caotic one)

– They lack something: they’re not actionable

– people dont click on them
– new roi: relying on insignificance
– but it takes effort to fix it
– but with analytics we can make a difference

– smsu centerpiece has calls to action

– you need to measure
– you need to set goals
– get rid of old conventions; need to inovate
– this requires new standards

– first impressions are important
– standout
– its not enough to keep up

See PatternTap for design ideas