Revised Information Architecture for Better User Experience

Vermont Historical Society

As you might guess, Vermont Historical Society has a vast amount of information to share with everyone. They engage both Vermonters and "Vermonters at heart" in the exploration of Vermont's rich heritage. They believe that an understanding of the past changes lives and builds better communities.

The Problem

We met the wonderful staff at the Vermont Historical Society in 2013. They had realized they needed help updating their version of Joomla as well as to reorganize their website content to make it more usable, accessible, simple and clean. Within their organization they have two museums, a library and several online collections that needed to be more prominent. They have a treasure chest full of historical photos that needed to be highlighted on the website and their shopping cart, an important source of online revenue, didn't meet their needs.

The Solution

A lot of upfront work to reorganize their navigation was done. Using a simplified yet custom Joomla web design that focused on their rich collection of photographs and accordion functionality to control the content length, the site is now easier to navigate. We have also included side modules of information to encourage further exploration of the site.

Their online collections can be seen with the help of Joomla gallery components. Their PDF collection is now part of their indexed search functionality. These enhancements are allowing Vermont researchers to reach all of the Vermont Historical Society resources.

Their previous shopping cart solution did not offer them all of the functionality they needed. With their new cart, they can accommodate their shopper's needs with ease and generate e-commerce reports with a click of a button.

In 2015 we upgraded their version of Joomla and turned their template into a mobile-friendly version. Their website will serve them for years to come and allows them to focus on gathering and sharing more rich Vermont history with the Web community.


We were impressed by 4Web from the start. At the very beginning of their search for a website developer, Jane explains, "I looked at the 4Web profile and it was clear that they tailor their sites to what their customers need. During the project, they were willing to take the time to listen, ask and explore with us. They put a lot of time and people power up front. We worked with a team where everyone knew their specialties. I never got the feeling that we were asking too many questions, and it still feels like a partnership.

Jane Campbell

Director of Development