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Case Study: Akraya

06 May Case Study: Akraya

Akraya is a recruiting firm based in Sunnyvale, CA right outside San Francisco. They’re specialty is the tech industry and they partner with some amazing companies to help them find the best and brightest. They had started redesigning their old site, when their developer just up and left. Their WordPress theme was nearly complete, so we started with that.

What they needed:

  1. Responsive design
  2. Easier content management (on their public facing site they were running Drupal)
  3. A blog section that integrates with the design
  4. An easy-to-update slider, with transitions
  5. A dozen page templates
  6. A career portal
  7. Better site architecture

Their current public facing site was a Drupal install that was a couple years old. They had to call their developer every time they wanted to make even the slightest content upgrade. An intentional design by their developer, but one that often leads to tons of headache: call me for the big stuff, but not to change a sentence.

So, we started over with WordPress, and the theme CoolBlue, as it’s responsive out of the box. Of course there were a ton of modifications that needed to be made. The first of which was changing the home page from full width to more of a boxed type layout. This would allow for the cityscape in the background, as well as more contained, easier to read, content.

On their old site, they had an install of WordPress within Drupal for their blog management. This created a problem as the blog and site were, in essence, two different things, and didn’t seamlessly integrate. Something, that can, from time to time, leave users confused and frustrated. Of course, WordPress was originally designed to be a blogging platform, so integrating the blog into the design was essentially an easy task.

They have so much content already, that we just exported it from the old site, and imported back to the new site. Voila! Tons of content, archived, tagged and categorized, with a beautiful new layout.

But, perhaps the trickiest thing to accomplish was a responsive slider. On all the top level pages there is a custom slider, with custom content, and a link to all the child pages. We used Revolution Slider, which is a bit tricky to configure, but once up and running is an incredibly powerful slider. Each slider can be easily added to any page via a shortcode.

And since every page is different, being able to add and remove sliders with ease was of utmost importance. There were about a dozen different page templates, each one being unique in its own way. In short, some of them included: a full width page, a contact page, a blog page, an archive page, a slider page, a staff page, and a default page. Some other smaller ones, were more or less modifications of those.

All these page templates were for their different content types, and allowed everything to display very unified throughout the site, regardless of the actual content on the page.

The last two things they needed were a career portal, and better site architecture. The career portal was easy: a third party iframe was dropped in, and tweaked and both fit the color scheme of the theme and be responsive.

The site architecture, however, was a bit harder. Their current site was flat. Meaning every page was basically on the same level. This is not only bad for SEO, but confusing for users. With a more defined architecture, breadcrumbs were added to allow visitors to very easily see where they are on the site, what the current page and parent page is, and how to get back to wherever they were before.

With all that the Akraya site was complete. All in all it took about 2 months to build from the ground up, and is now a very easily managed site for the folks over there.

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