Durham, NC (PressExposure) October 31, 2013 -- DesignHammer recently launched a redesigned Northgate Mall website, which features an improved user interface and updated look.
Located in Durham, NC, Northgate Mall has been a regional shopping center for over 60 years, with more than 140 retailers. The locally owned and operated mall features national chains, local retailers, specialty shops, a multi-screen movie theater and dining options. The mall also serves the greater Durham community by hosting events for all ages and interests, such as lifestyle expos, family events, and a free health and wellness program for walkers.
With an existing website that was difficult to update, Northgate Mall sought out DesignHammer's expertise to improve their content editing experience.
"DesignHammer led us through the often complicated task of website redesign with expertise and patience," said Tara Hill, social media specialist at Northgate Associates. "The team was dependable, professional and enjoyable to work with. We highly recommend working with DesignHammer," she said.
For the redesign, the Northgate Mall team required a website that allowed them to easily update content to ensure current information. The website also needed to be well organized so site visitors could easily find information and to facilitate Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Using WordPress, DesignHammer created a website with a clean and modern look, and with easy access for content updates. WordPress is a free open source content management system (CMS) that allows organizations of all sizes to maintain an up-to-date online presence through a user-friendly platform.
Easy to use and versatile, WordPress can be customized with tens of thousands of themes, plugins and widgets, allowing for freedom in functionality.
DesignHammer modified several plugins to provide the necessary functionality and enhance the user experience on the Northgate Mall website. The Store Directory, an important feature of the website, was designed to engage users through intuitive browsing and searching options. Users can search for a retailer by name, browse by category and location, or by utilizing the interactive map of the mall. Created by DesignHammer, the map allows users to hover over and click on stores, which redirects to a page with more information about products and services offered, contact, and current sales and offers when applicable.
Using the Gravity Forms plugin, DesignHammer built several custom forms for the website. Gravity Forms is a WordPress-specific plugin that allows users to build complex and interactive contact forms. The plugin is used by more than half a million WordPress sites, and has the ability to integrate third party services such as PayPal and MailChimp.
The WordPress designers and developers at DesignHammer have years of industry experience building custom WordPress themes and websites, most recently to utilize responsive Web design for mobile browsing.
To accommodate mobile browsing, the redesigned website uses Responsive Web Design, which adapts to the size of display the website is viewed on. Responsive design provides an optimal user experience independent of device, resolution or browser. "For a WordPress website, using mobile plugins or WordPress themes with responsive design can provide for excellent mobile browsing," said DesignHammer Account Manager Stephen Pashby.
Founded in 2001, DesignHammer is an award winning, full-service website design and development agency. The firm specializes in graphic design, content management systems, online application development, search engine optimization, usability and hosting, with experience in serving the needs of organizations of all sizes.