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GVSU Homepage Preview
Why the change?
The homepage was last redesigned in 2012 to accommodate a fast-growing mobile audience. Mobile visits in 2012 accounted for 9% of total visits, today that number has climbed to 26% and we see this trend continuing. Our goal was to:
- Ensure that GVSU sites load quickly on all devices by using the latest web technologies
- Increase readability for all size screens
- Showcase mission critical information
- Meet the latest Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0)
How does the web team decide to make changes?
The homepage redesign in 2012 was a success. We received positive feedback then, and continue to receive positive feedback now. For that reason we did not make any drastic changes to the existing elements, we focused on visual improvements and adding the features that you requested. Besides your direct emails and phone calls we also regularly review:
- Google Analytics
- Focus group feedback
- Usability testing results
- Load testing reports
Library shortcut icon
The most requested feature
Quick access to academic calendar (important dates)
The second most requested feature was quick access to important dates from the homepage. The Academic Calendar (Important Dates) is one of the most accessed pages on the GVSU website and now can be accessed directly on the GVSU homepage.
The menus on the homepage will be much larger with more categories and links, allowing you to get to your favorite content more quickly.
While the previous homepage looked great on all screen sizes the new homepage takes it one step further by serving up assets with smaller file sizes to mobile devices, further reducing load time.
A randomized set of quick facts about GVSU will appear on the homepage on each visit.
Social Media Photos & Tweets
Larger social media photos will be featured on the homepage along with your tweets!
PageSpeed Insights Score: 100
The GVSU homepage receives a score of 100 on Google PageSpeed Insights for both desktop and mobile versions. Reaching a score of 100 on Google PageSpeed Insights was no easy task, but we did it!! Here are just a few of the techniques we used to increase load times up to 48% faster on mobile devices:
- Image Compression (jpegtran)
- Image srcset
- Lazy loading
- Client side caching
- Server side caching
- Splitting CSS into critical & non-critical stylesheets
Thoughts? Questions? Concerns? Please contact the web team. Once the new homepage goes live and you have a chance to play around with it, please send us your feedback. There will be an ad at the bottom of the new homepage that will say "What do you think of the new GVSU homepage?"