Mobile Friendly My Allegheny

The Allegheny College family of websites has continued to evolve in many exciting ways lately, including in April when we launched a redesign of the home page.  One reason this launch was exciting is because it was our first “mobile first” website, which is a way of saying the website works great and looks great no matter what device you’re using, from mobile to desktop. During that same time, we revealed that mobile first web design will be our new focus, meaning that we intend to have the vast majority of new websites that we launch to be mobile friendly. Any website under allegheny.edu should work on any device, from mobile to desktop.

So, we’re excited to announce our latest progress in meeting our goal: My Allegheny. On first glance, you might take a look and think it basically looks the same (on desktop at least). This is intentional. Instead of completely redesigning the website like we did for the home page, we looked to keep the fairly new design of My Allegheny, and add support for smaller devices.

My Allegheny desktop and mobile will keep all of the same features
My Allegheny’s look and feel is kept alive on mobile phones

Part of our mobile first philosophy is that websites viewed on mobile devices should not be compromised in its usability, features, or design. That was our main concern with how the My Allegheny functioned (or didn’t function) on mobile devices before. The only feature that was present was the news feed, which didn’t make sense for the majority of users that used the site in many other ways.

Before and After
The before version My Allegheny website is missing a lot of features, which are now present

So, again, this is another preview to what we have in store this year for the entirety of the websites. In the mean time, let us know what you think of the newest change to My Allegheny by clicking on the following button and filling out the form.

Thanks!

Allegheny website feedback form

Style Guide and Editor Cards

As many of Allegheny College’s Web Editors are aware of, there is a Web Editors Guide on the Web Communications website created as a guide for running individual sites, but since it’s a fairly new addition to the site, not every Editor know that it’s out there. There are also new features added to the website that are made available to all Editors, but, again, there’s the challenge of making people aware of what is available to them.  To solve this, there are several new resources being made available to Editors:

Web Style Guide

The new Web Style Guide is a page showcasing what an Allegheny WordPress page looks like in function, and shows what the standard stylings and features are. This is a great place to see what features have been made available to Editors, like content boxes, buttons, columns, and image galleries.

Web Editor Card

The freshly printed tent cards serve as a quick reference for important web addresses relevant to Editors, so there’s never any question about where you can go for support. These are printed and available, just email web@allegheny.edu and ask for a card.

Dashboard Editor Help

Editors can now easily access all forms of support from inside the WordPress dashboard through the Editor Help button in the navigation. From the Editor Help page, Editors can quickly access important resources relevant to working in WordPress:  the Editor Guide, Web Style Guide, the Web Communications website, and contact information.

Info

Only those with an Allegheny WordPress account will be able to access this page

The ultimate goal for all of these features is to improve Allegheny’s web presence by giving content creators and Web Editors the tools they need to improve their own department’s websites. If you have any questions about any of these new features, let me and Jesse know at our new email address at web@allegheny.edu.

/Web, Social Media, More!

Wer’e happy to announce several new and exciting additions are coming to the Web Communications Department, including the newly launched Web Communications website! This site will the go-to place to see what’s new with internet marketing at Allegheny College, including new websites, social media endeavors, web news, and web support. And visit often! The website will feature more, as more happens in Allegheny’s world of web.

Also new is our efforts to ramp up social. This means more interesting content going to all of our regular channels including Facebook and Twitter, and adding new social media channels including Instagram and Flickr. Be sure to follow Allegheny in all of our social media channels to know all of the going-ons here at Allegheny.

Going along with social media, we’re also looking to see how to get the Allegheny community more involved. Our first effort is Photo Friday and #ACGatorGram, where we’re asking for the photographers of Allegheny’s community to submit their photos to be showcased on all of our social media channels. Check out the photo submissions page for more info.

WordPress Guide

Web Communications is proud to announce the launch of the Allegheny College WordPress Guide. The WordPress Guide is a comprehensive resource for all WordPress Editors and covers topics from beginner to advanced. Topics covered in this guide include:

WordPress Basics

This section defines what WordPress is, and how Allegheny College uses WordPress for its family of websites. There are also some general guidelines for best practices when editing an Allegheny College WordPress page.

Pages and Posts

This section covers the basics of editing pages and posts, and defines what the differences between pages and posts are.

Text Formatting

This section gives basic guidelines and instruction for editing text in WordPress.

Images Guide

This section gives guidelines for proper use of images, and instruction on how to add media, alignment, and using the gallery or image slider.

Navigation and Menus

This section covers instruction for building and making changes to the WordPress site navigation.

Advanced WordPress

There are several guides included in the Advanced WordPress Guides covering several topics:

  • Tables
  • Breadcrumbs and hierarchies
  • Sidebar and Widgets
  • Shortcode
  • Basics of HTML

The WordPress guide is part of Web Communications continuing work to support editors and make Allegheny College’s web presence the best it can possibly be. If there are any questions, concerns, or issues regarding this guide, there is a suggestions form that can found in the guide and filled out.

WordPress Updates

First off, for those who I haven’t gotten a chance to meet me yet, I’d like to introduce myself. My name is Sean O’Connor and I am overjoyed that, as of November, I am working in the Web Communications department as the new Digital Media Specialist. My role is basically to work with Jesse Lavery on all things web.

In my first of many blog posts, I would like to announce several improvements that are coming to Allegheny’s web presence. To start, thanks to our increases in staff and resources, we are going to be increasing our role in support for the campus’s WordPress Editors, through more communication and more access to training. Me and Jesse will be going into more detail over the next three posts, which you should receive throughout the rest of March, but in the mean time, here are a few things you can expect:

  • The “WordPress Guide”! This comprehensive guide will be launching later this month as a resource for Editors when using WordPress.
  • New WordPress features! These will be improving the WordPress editing and viewing experience.
  • Update to WordPress 3.3.1! What are the changes we can expect?

That’s all for now! If for any reason you’d like to contact us at Web Communications:

Sean O’Connor x4783
soconnor@allegheny.edu

Jesse Lavery x2769
jlavery@allegheny.edu