New Responsive Cork Athletics Website in Development

For the past two years or so, the Cork Athletics website has been undergoing various changes. Some of these have been in public view, while a lot has been happening 'Behind the Scenes'.  During this time several version Responsive Sites have been developed, but time pressure, due to several factors, impeded the building of a site suitable to Cork Athletics needs and requirements.  Consequently Cork Athletics recently engaged a professional web design company to build the new website.

Cork Athletics Test Website - Mark-IV
Screenshot of Version IV of Cork Athletics in-house website development

Why is a New Website Needed?

There are several reasons behind the change:
Mobile devices have become, more and more, the norm.  Currently over 60% of Cork Athletics visitors use mobile or tablet devices.  The current Cork Athletics website isn't responsive - a major drawback, so it doesn't provide a quality user experience.

Since April 2015, Google has introduced several changes to it's Search Engine Algorithm, resulting in websites that are not mobile friendly being penalised, and downgraded in search query returns.  In spite of this, the Cork Athletics website traffic continues to grow at a very significant rate, nevertheless the Google search engine changes have had an effect.

What's Going to Happen?

A fully responsive website is being developed.  This will be a menu-driven CMS (Content Management System) site, with significant information resources/references.  The 'evergreen' content (content that is of long term value) will be added gradually, to build a quality athletics reference.

It is expected that the new website will be launched in the next few weeks. 
A key element of the new website will be a simple user-friendly menu system, which aims to significantly improve the ease at which users find the information/links they are looking for.  To accentaute this, a Search facility will also be available, from the Homepage.

What's Going to Happen with the Existing Site?

The existing site will move to a sub-domain, and will continue to be accessible from the Main Menu of the new website, however it will be a separate element, so won't be searchable under the new system. 

The existing site represents fifteen years of Cork Athletics history.  It is a long term goal that all of the content on the existing/old site would be copied over to the new site, however this will take both significant time and significant resources.   In the shorter term all resources will be diverted towards both stabilising and expanding the new site.

When Will the Changeover Take Place?

It is hoped that the development will be finalised over the next few weeks.  Following testing, the moves will take place.  This will mean that the site(s) will be taken offline, hopefully for a very short period, while the backroom stuff is implemented.

Who is going to Contribute to the Site?

That's a very significant question!  A small group of people already contributes to the website, however it is hoped that more people will volunteer to
help out.  If you are interested in helping, please email Cork Athletics Webmaster

Site Mockup

The example below was created to assess a colour scheme, however it gives a feel for the layout envisaged.  The Menu items displayed are for illustration purposes only - they don't do anything/lead anywhere.

Event Calendar / Race Showcase

A key element of the new website will be an improved calendar, including showcasing of events, and detailed searches for events, under a number of categories.  The site below gives an overview example.

Social Media Integration

There will be full social media integration, allowing instant, easy and direct sharing of almost everything on the website, to the likes of Facebook, Twitter and the likes.

News, including RSS feeds

It is planned to include a dedicated news section, including RSS feeds from several athletics sites.

Video and Photos

It is hoped to integrate the Cork Athletics Vimeo video and Flickr! photo accounts into the new site

Race Results and Reports

Provision of the results, and reports, from  Athletics ireland registered events in Cork has been a key element  of the website to date.  This will continue, with the longer term goal of reintroducing the CARD results database, formerly hosted on the Eagle AC website.  This was a fully searchable database, which went offline in 2010,  At the time it held over 156,000 individual race results.