Website Changes coming in 2021!

As you may know, we are working on a complete overhaul of our public website. Imagemakers, out of Wamego, is our new website design vendor. We will (most likely) wrap things up and go live with the new website towards the end of March.

So what’s changing on the public website? Plenty! Here’s a short list of some big changes:

  • Updated visual look. Larger images, more white space. More images.
  • Simplified navigation. The navigation bar at the top of the page will be simplified for easier access to our content.
  • Upgraded Search. We are completely overhauling the search experience. The new search will find website posts and pages, items in our catalog, and items from many of our databases.
  • Centers of Gravity. Right now, blog post content is arranged in categories. The new site will continue that – right now, we are calling them “centers of gravity.” While we will probably not continue calling them that, it’s a handy description of the content groupings we are working on. Within each content grouping, you will find posts, pages, events, and things from our catalog that relate to that topic. These will include content groupings like Readers, Genealogy, Art Gallery, Jobs & Careers, etc.
  • Integrated website and catalog. Yes, you heard that right. We are getting rid of Bibliocommons and are integrating our library catalog with the website. So if you go to … you are also at the catalog.
  • Lists are changing. We will still be able to create staff lists of books for blog posts and pages on the website (there will just be a different way to make these). Customer lists and shelves will be simplified.
  • WordPress is going away. We are moving from WordPress to a custom Content Management System (CMS). It is being designed to be very easy to use.

What’s the new site look like? I’ve included a mock-up image of the main page with this post. These aren’t finalized yet, so expect changes as we get closer to launch! We also plan to redesign the Library Foundation’s website and our Staff Intranet site. More on those projects later.

Have a question about the new website? Please feel free to ask!

12 thoughts on “Website Changes coming in 2021!

  1. Debbie Stanton on said:

    Wow! This is all very exciting. I love that our main page will be our catalog — it’s what customers already expect and will feel so much more seamless based on our most essential services.

  2. Natalie Moreland on said:

    The thing I like least about the search tool on our current website is that the first 3-5 “results” are ads for things related to the search term but NOT part of the library website. Other than that, the search tool works pretty well and I can find what I’m looking for. Will the upgrade get rid of ads in our search results?

    • David Lee King on said:

      Yes – those ads are going away with the new website. We used to use the Google Search Appliance for our search engine. Then Google killed that service, so everything reverted to a normal google search, complete with ads. So that’s why those ads are there right now – I will be glad when they go away!

  3. Adrienne Sanders on said:

    Will this effect how catalog results and the actual bibliographic record are displayed to the customer? If so, do we know how?

    • David Lee King on said:

      Yes, it definitely will. Imagemakers is still working on that design, so … we will know more about that later.

  4. Lissa Staley on said:

    Does getting rid of bibliocommons mean that we should archive our book reviews, lists, for later, etc. if we want access to that information personally? I’m not sure I understand what that means. Thanks!

    • David Lee King on said:

      Good question! I’m not sure what the answer to that is yet. So – more later on that one!

  5. Michelle Stottlemire on said:

    For those patrons that have elected to have their accounts record/remember what they’ve checked out – will this change keep that information or wipe it out? Thanks!

    • David Lee King on said:

      As of now, the plan is to transfer that info over to the new website/catalog.