If you run an informational website, the main goal is to make it as easy as possible for visitors to find what they want. That was the mission for TAPS Public Transit’s Office of Communications and Marketing when they set out to completely redesign the transportation agency’s Internet home last year.
In just 12 months TAPSbus.com has gone through a number of makeovers. The result is a 100% increase in traffic with an average of 15,000 visits per month. More than half of that number represents “new visitors.”
Dan Acree is manager of TAPS’s communications office. He said that while many websites look for, and encourage, engagement —enticing visitors to explore the site and stay there for a while— that’s not the primary goal fro TAPS.
“If we are doing our job as an informational site, then we want a visitor to come to the homepage, find exactly what they need, and leave,” said Acree. Knowing what riders want to know and proper design of menus is critical.
“If you were to spend much time at TAPSbus.com then you would discover how much depth of information there is.” While the content changes several times daily, outdated information is expired and removed.
“We don’t think of TAPSbus.com as an archive site. It’s not where you would go to find something we published two years ago. When a page is no longer relevant it is removed so as to maximize the accuracy of any search,” explained Acree. “You won’t get a long list of search results that are outdated or irrelevant.”
Ronald Fuquay is the TAPSbus.com webmaster responsible for the look and feel of the website. “We have invested hundreds of hours in refining how we categorize the data and in the layout of the pages to make things easy to find, easy to read, and with lots of relevant links,” said Fuquay.
On any given day there may be as many as two dozen changes to existing pages and the addition of 3-5 new pages.