If you’re a regular visitor to the ICO website, you may have noticed our new homepage.

Our previous homepage had been designed over five years ago. Since then we’d made minor improvements, eg in 2010 to bring the site in line with the ICO’s then-new logo, colours and overall ‘look’.

Why change?

Users, particularly members of the public, weren’t served as well as they could be by the previous homepage. Some key user journeys weren’t visible, and users needed to go through too many clicks to get to the content they were looking for. There was a need for us to better signpost the most commonly needed content, while maintaining and improving the ICO’s ability to quickly refresh the page when new information rights needs arise, eg as a result of the ICO or topics relating to our remit appearing in the news.

As the homepage is also the ICO’s ‘shop window’, it is key to reinforcing the ICO’s position and role. As the ICO had developed and improved, our homepage needed to reflect this.

Aims and objectives

The overall aim of the homepage redesign was to make it easier for people to find what they’re looking for and do things on the site.

The specific objectives were:

  • to make the most commonly accessed content easier to find, particularly for members of the public, eg advice and complaints;
  • to improve the visibility of key journeys for organisations, eg to get guidance relating to the legislation we cover, and to register under the Data Protection Act; and
  • to provide increased flexibility and opportunities to bring content held within the site more ‘to the fore’;
  • all while making the design dynamic, and reinforcing our positioning as the authoritative arbiter of information rights – confident, professional, approachable, straightforward and welcoming.

The changes explained

The visible changes include a redesign of the homepage colours and layout. We’ve heavily promoted the ‘action’ links, which show the key reasons that people come to our site, and were previously not present on the homepage or hard to find. We’ve given more space and prominence to the ‘For the public’ area, adding extra text to give more context to the links to that section. We’ve maintained the prominence of the ‘For organisations’ area, giving that audience the key links they need.

We also took the opportunity to ‘bring in’ the width of the whole website, to make it easier to read the site content on wider monitors. And across the site, we’ve updated the main heading style to tie in better with the new header and expanded footer.

Behind the scenes, we’ve improved the way we upload and refresh the page.

We hope you like the changes. To tell us what you think, you can email us at websitefeedback@ico.org.uk.