I'm very excited to announce that the Interactive Science Teacher site is live and ready for action! I've been working on it for a while now, and it's finally ready.
Bill Wilkinson has an amazing concept for his business by providing premium, high-quality science lessons along with the accompanying powerpoints, lecture notes, etc. to subscribers for their use in their classrooms. I believe he has a rock-solid concept here and I look forward to seeing this business take off for him.
The goal was to combine two different sites in to one and make the new site more user-friendly and bring in a better user experience across the board. His oldest site had a lot of pages without a lot of reworking of the design, and the newer one was built on WordPress, but he wanted to take it to the next level and build something awesome.
We brought in all the content from both sites to give his subscribers one central hub where they could find everything they were looking for and broke things down to make them much more manageable – from signing up, to downloading lessons, to managing content.
The old sites needed some help with being user-friendly and intuitive so those are two of biggest issues we focused on. Neither of the old sites had really clear calls to action and we wanted to make sure we presented visitors with the opportunity to join early and often in all the right places.
We built a new landing page for prospective members to get a great idea of the awesome content that's available to members. In the old versions of the site things weren't quite so clear so we wanted to show visitors how awesome the content and site is. We did this by providing a large-screen video preview of one of the lessons, some bullet points about what goes in to creating the lessons, then a breakdown of all the different lessons available. There is a similar version of this page for members to be able to quickly and easily find what they're looking for.
Visually I wanted the site to resemble qualities that would be familiar to teachers – blackboards, chalk, etc. – to give a school type of feel. We used a couple different fonts to achieve this and the script font in particular was reminsicent of comments teachers put on papers. I also created a new logo to represent the overall science theme.
This is a WordPress site and we've got several very cool WordPress plugins we're using to make all this happen. First, to manage membership and all that comes with that we've got WishList Member installed. I've done a few sites that use this plugin in recently and it's fairly simple to use and get installed.
We're also using a plugin called S3FlowShield. All of the videos and handouts are hosted in Amazon's S3 storage service and this plugin makes implementing the videos and zip files a snap. I really like this plugin. It was a plugin that Bill was using before on one of the old versions of his site and this is a super easy-to-use plugin to connect your website with Amazon Web Services for CDN purposes.
I'm really excited about this one. Sites like these are becoming more popular and Bill already has a strong membership base and a strong product. It's only going to get better for him and with this site, he'll be able to scale and grow like he wants with all the tools he needs.