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Forge Mill Farm.

forge mill logo

Design, Develop, Launch, and Maintain a website for Forge Mill Farm in Sandwell.

An Overview

Forge Mill Farm is a vibrant agricultural destination and community hub within the heart of Sandwell. Operated by the Sandwell Council, this farm offers a countryside escape from urban life. With a rich history dating back to the 18th century, Forge Mill Farm blends tradition with modernity. The website project aimed to enhance the online presence of Forge Mill Farm, providing an accessible, visually appealing, and user-friendly platform to engage visitors, promote events and facilitate easy content management for the Sandwell Council.

Forge mill

Some of the primary objectives and goals of the Forge Mill Farm
project were:

Our creative UI/UX designers collaborated closely with the Sandwell Council to understand user needs and goals. The result was a bespoke design that reflected Forge Mill Farm’s identity, maintaining a balance between aesthetics and functionality.
The Forge Mill Farm website went live on November 30, 2023.

forge fill farm

Gaining Design Clarity

Sweans initiated the website redesign process by hosting engaging workshops focused on user experience and visual design. In these sessions, Sandwell Council stakeholders actively participated in exercises like extensive customer journey mapping. This involved envisioning how individuals navigate the site to access information seamlessly. Additionally, collaborative design evaluations were conducted, where key leaders and project managers provided valuable insights into the designs, expressing their preferences and reasons behind them. Through these exercises, a shared design language emerged, enabling Sweans to establish a set of clear design goals that harmonised with the technical requirements for the Forge Mill Farm website.

Strategic Collaboration

For the third time, we collaborated with Sandwell Council to create a bespoke website. Sweans conducted in-depth consultations with the Sandwell Council to comprehend their vision, branding requirements, content preferences and desired features.

Here are the crucial website features of the Forge Mill Farm website:

  • Adhering to WCAG 2.1AA accessibility standards, the website ensures inclusivity for all users.
  • The website boasts a responsive design, ensuring optimal user experiences across various devices, including desktops, tablets, and mobile phones.
  • Leveraging the power of Elementor, a cutting-edge WordPress page builder, our developers ensured a mobile-responsive design.
  • With WordPress CMS, we offered the Sandwell Council an intuitive and user-friendly platform to manage and update website content effortlessly.
  • Integrated Ticket Source into the Forge Mill Farm website to allow visitors to purchase event tickets online, streamlining the ticketing process and providing a hassle-free way for users to secure their spots for farm events.
  • Include clearly defined Call-to-Action (CTA) buttons throughout the website, with a Sticky “Book Now” button for easy access when browsing events.
forge fill farm

UI/UX Design

Sweans designers actively worked on incorporating the new look and feel of the rebrand into a web design language. Throughout the wireframe process, both teams collaborated closely to ensure that the design aligned perfectly with their shared vision for a platform catering to thousands of travel enthusiasts.

  • Our design team generated various design concepts in alignment with Forge Mill Farm’s branding and preferences.
  • After several revisions, we opted for a modern colour palette with a clean and professional layout that adheres to the colour contrast recommendations outlined in the WCAG guideline
  • The challenge was to create a visually appealing, easily navigable, and user-centric interface.

Our creative UI/UX designers tackled this challenge by paying attention to responsive design. It ensures a seamless and enjoyable browsing experience across all devices, from desktops to smartphones. This adaptability highlights the credibility of the Forge Mill Farm brand and encourages visitors to explore the website, regardless of the device they are using.

The outcome was the impressive Forge Mill Farm website showcases the dynamic essence of the new brand and is powered by the user-friendly WordPress content management system (CMS).

forge fill farm

Ensuring Everyone Can Access

Sweans prioritised making the Forge Mill Farm website more accessible. They focused on reaching the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, specifically achieving Level AA in WCAG 2.1. The enhancements guarantee that the entire site can now be easily navigated using just a keyboard.

The specific colours for various elements on the site pages—such as text, background, or icons—are defined by the established colour palette. This ensures consistency with the brand and makes the site accessible. It also guarantees that the site design functions effectively in dark mode, providing a modern and dynamic feel. Dark mode enhances the site’s contemporary vibe and facilitates easier interaction and reading for individuals with visual impairments.

Our Quality engineers diligently adhere to the company’s strict front-end accessibility guidelines, contributing to the Forge Mill Farm website’s compliance with the high standards set by the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 AA.

Before the website’s launch, Sweans conducted comprehensive training sessions for the editorial team at Sandwell Council. The aim was to ensure the team felt capable and confident in seamlessly taking charge of the site.

Ongoing Support

After the launch, the digital leadership at Sandwell chose Sweans as their ongoing support partner, aligning with a vision that focuses on making continuous improvements to support the evolving site content, users, and technologies.

Based on the data and feedback collected from both front- and back-end site users since the relaunch, we have set new goals:

  • Establishing measurable metric benchmarks.
  • Expanding Forge Mill Farm’s audience by combining traditional campaigns with new opportunities in the digital ecosystem.
  • Making editorial adjustments to further enhance the time-to-site for content.
  • Modifying onsite search and styling to enhance the accessibility of expected content.

Guided by the expertise of Audience, User Experience Designers, and Web Engineers, Sweans is excited to play an action-oriented role in the ongoing digital evolution of Forge Mill Farm.


forge mill farm

Post-Launch Results

After the launch, Forge Mill Farm joyfully announced that the month following the launch marked their most successful month ever.

Here are the highlights from the initial month:

  • We welcomed the highest number of monthly visitors on record.
  • The bounce rate reached an all-time low.
  • Users who used the new on-site search showed increased engagement.
  • There was a notable boost in the average time spent on the site.

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