Extratime | Website build
Extratime was founded in 2003 by two parents of disabled children in response to an issue affecting parent carers like them ? a lack of suitable, affordable, childcare for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) in Brighton & Hove. The team at Extratime provides an amazing service for their community often providing a lifeline to many families across Sussex and it’s been our pleasure to work with them since January 2019.
With their team offering such an amazing service, we needed to ensure the new website would allow them to spread their messages and engage with a much wider audience. Our journey started by working with the Extratime team to create a formal brief highlighting current issues and longer-term vision.
Thankfully Sam & Faye came extremely well prepared, this meant we could move into our kick-off meeting and get straight to the heart of the matter.?At the heart of the brief was a very real concern that parent/carers were simply not using the website, the assumption was the information on the original website was too dense and users couldn’t engage with it. Having spent a few sessions working with the Extratime team to understand their admissions process, class sizes, and support types we were ready to conduct some user testing.
This started with Grant visiting the Extratime centre and speaking with a few parents. The sessions were covered both in person and digitally where we could begin to really understand where the blockers/problems were. It won’t surprise you to know the parents were very keen to gain additional insights from the website, but they found it easier to get this from Facebook rather than use the website! Although this is understandable (at the time) it was not the behaviour we wanted to encourage as a lot of amazing information was being missed.
With our team fueled with a new brief, and user insights we were ready to jump into the design & development stages – exciting times ahead!
After plotting out the key project acceptance criteria and areas we believe would present worthwhile opportunities, we got cracking with the initial stages of the website build. This stage is of vital importance to guide not only the new content (copy) creation but also to provide us with a ?home? point where we can reference throughout the creation of the website.
Moving into the next stages we worked closely with the Extratime team to work from design ideas, as we came closer to understand their particular tastes our developer Jason was brought into the meetings to take the design concepts into reality!
With some great feedback from the Extratime team, we made quick improvements and before you know it we were coming into the final stages of the project. This led us to optimise pages for SEO benefits (title tags, meta-data and alt tags)? whilst ensuring to upload the latest sitemap into Google Console to allow the website to begin ranking as quickly as possible.?
Some highlights from the project:
- WordPress build working with some custom features to pull in new feeds and allow for ease of use
- Website training provided to adminstrators
- Ability to add in new fundraising and donation methods
- Tested for accessibility prior to launch
- Technical SEO best practices included
- Integrated video throughout
?We have loved working with Creative Blend over the past year and with their help we now have a brand new website that we are thrilled with! Due to their professionalism and skill we have continued to find other ways to keep working with them even after the new website was finished.?
– Sam Price | CEO at Extratime
A little on the client
Extratime was founded in 2003 by two parents of disabled children in response to an issue affecting parent carers like them ? a lack of suitable, affordable, childcare for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) in Brighton & Hove.
Release Date: April 2020
- Since working with Creative Blend they have become like an extension to our team. They understand our business, our audience and the work they have done has helped us grow our reach and authority. They are full of great ideas for our next steps and have helped us develop as a team in the social media sphere.
- Working with Creative Blend is great for us at Dude and Arnette, they understand exactly what we want and how we want it. Communication is quick, easy and assertive so we?re always on top. Can?t fault anyone one we?ve had contact with and we?re very happy with the work they?ve done.
- We recently established a new firm of Accountants in Brighton. Creative Blend helped and supported us through the whole process from Branding to Website. I guess we were one of those difficult clients who didn?t really know what they wanted, the team at Creative Blend helped us work that out. We found them to be flexible, patient, knowledgeable and quick to respond to queries. Pricing options were simple and transparent, with a menu of what we might need so we could pick and choose what we wanted and understand the price. We would definitely recommend Creative Blend.
- It?s really important to us that we work with external agencies that are quick, efficient and easy to communicate with so that we can ensure our website is always performing to the best of its ability. Since working with Creative Blend, we?ve been really impressed with how they handle our (sometimes very last minute!) stream of requests and updates needed to our website, and find having a retainer very useful as we know we?re always guaranteed dedicated time to our website each month. We would highly recommend working with Creative Blend, particularly for their level of expertise and professionalism.
- I would recommend Creative Blend in a heartbeat. Working with the team was a pleasure, and their professional and hardworking ethos was evident throughout. From the start Grant worked hard to explore what we wanted out of our website and understand our industry. Communications and planning were always on point which enabled the project to run smoothly. Importantly for us Creative Blend remained flexible during the build. Our goal posts regularly changed which impacted the requirements of the site, but they rose to the occasion every time. The proof is in the pudding and they have designed and built a website we are very proud of. We can?t thank you enough for your time and effort, we are thrilled. FOX Group look forward to continuing to work with you in the future.
- I worked with Grant and the team for the launching of my rebranded company. They were brilliant from start to finish, the website design was incredible and I was taken through it step by step with so much patience and care, so I could go on to make changes and manage it myself. I came in for some training on social media marketing with the team which was invaluable, I learnt how I wanted my ?brand voice? to sound through fun exercises and was given so many tips on SEO & Social Media, it was more than I?d hoped for. They have always been on the end of my panic emails & answer quickly and effectively, have even responded to my urgent ?HELP ME!? messages at the weekend. The fact that they have such a great ethical policy as well just put the cherry on the top really & I would never go elsewhere for anything to do with the marketing or design of my company.
- We have worked with Creative Blend for over 9 months now and during this time we have enjoyed great communication with friendly advice. This was a key feature throughout the build of our new website, which kept us informed and helped us make key decisions at each stage. We now look forward to continuing to work with them through out new digital projects!
- I have worked with creative blend for the design of my company website and rebranding of the logo. Grant and the team has been very reactive and helpful all the way throughout the process and the Creative blend team have been quick to understand various feedback and adapt this to the end product. I am very happy with their services and can recommend them.
- Precise, thorough and organised are some of Grants key skills, but when you add that to a great team player and a great personality, you get the complete package. His enthusiasm is second to none, but this is also backed up with excellent results. People who work with him love him and so do his clients. A great and invaluable asset to any company.
- Creative Blend have been generously contributing their skills, expertise and creative thinking to Love Is All We Need for the past 18 months. Their professional and friendly way of being is invaluable to us as a charity that exists on a purely volunteer and pro bono basis.
- I had the pleasure of working on a variety of web development projects with Grant and found his ability to get to the route of the problem invaluable. Grant has a natural skill for providing workable solutions through his designs, he fully understands potential technical limitations, keeps the end user at the core of his designs and is great at expressing his ideas to us non-designers. Grant is also an exceptional leader. He gives his team the freedom to explore new ideas and the support they need to see their work come to life. He?s encouraging and keen to develop their skills at any given opportunity.
- Grant?s good humour and amiable character making working with him a real pleasure. Throughout the eight months working with us he showed great skill in listening to our needs, taking feedback and delivering a great result. His knowledge of design and conversion have led to strong, inventive ideas that have improved our site conversion.
- Creative blend have been an absolute joy to work with.? They have been kind, supportive and efficient.? The whole experience of updating our website has been fantastic and we are delighted with the end result.
- Having worked with Creative Blend for over 2 years now we have really enjoyed a great working relationship. Between our in-house team and the creative & development skills at Creative Blend, we have been able to champion some exciting new projects. This has led us to innovate with new pieces of content & developments taking place. I would highly recommend them.
- Working with Creative Blend has been fantastic. Their enthusiasm, rapid response to feedback, and their diverse skillset helped us develop effective new marketing materials, site improvements, and content/SEO initiatives. A great asset to achieving our marketing goals.