Ward Hadaway

The alignment of brand identity, printed materials and the research, design & development of a responsive website with accessible content

Developing the Ward Hadaway Website

During 2017, after 4 years of working together, Ward Hadaway asked us to develop their current website that we initially developed in 2015.

We had worked with Ward Hadaway across both brand positioning and their web offering and in that time we have developed a strong working relationship. The current website had been a major success and really helped Ward Hadaway maintain their online presence during a time of growth. Following some discussions with the marketing team we revisited the original page designs with a view to reaffirming the firms’ position as a Top 100 Law firm, increase the promotion of news and event items along with the knowledge posts.

The developments we launched not only were present on the homepage, but had to be considered throughout the internal pages of the site, again, ensuring promotion of the key content across the site. Ward Hadaway's updatable content had become a big feature of their site and marketing, their events were becoming more and more popular and the knowledge posts from their lawyers were being very well received. This meant a large part of our work was to focus on developing these areas and create a more simple and user friendly experience.

Quite often we find ourselves using the term ‘function over form’. In this case, the design of the Ward Hadaway site is quite conservative, however the high level of detail and consideration paid to the design and hierarchy of the page content, the user journey throughout the site and ultimately the promotion of content to support the knowledge of the staff leads clearly through to the success of the final product.

The site has received a range of positive feedback from regular users and clients alike, backed up by analytical data which shows increased and longer page views of knowledge and news posts.

Brand consolidation

Ward Hadaway is one of the North East’s biggest multi-disciplinary law firms, with offices in Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle.

In 2013 we were asked to look at developing a new website for WH that would help to position the firm as the regional leader in legal services.

Whilst working with the marketing team, it became apparent that there was a need for a brand consolidation document, which we were more than happy to provide. This has given the marketing team a solid roadmap to follow when promoting internally, whilst we continue to support the team on external aspects.

Ward Hadaway branding guidelines Ward Hadaway website layout

Easily accessible content

To make sure we met requirements, we spent time researching the marketplace and talking to existing clients of the firm to understand what they needed from the new Ward Hadaway website.

Of the feedback received, the first and most prominent point was to create a site with easily accessible content. The solution to this can be seen on the Ward Hadaway home page, where the core navigation is extremely simple and in the form of three links; ‘Your Needs’, ‘Your Sector’ and ‘Our Lawyers’, all of which reveal appropriate content and can be accessed from anywhere on the site.

The second point was that the site should depict the lawyers of Ward Hadaway clearly and consistently. This required the help of a professional photographer who we worked with to shoot consistent imagery of more than 200 lawyers across three locations.

Ward Hadaway staff

Developing a relationship

The new Ward Hadaway website has been received well by stakeholders and clients alike.

Ward Hadaway now have a web presence they are proud of, they are now presented in a professional manner, that users understand, embrace and can navigate with ease. Through analysis, we became aware that many visitors to the site don’t use the latest browsers; therefore many fallbacks have been implemented to best serve content to everyone.

We continue to support the marketing team at Ward Hadaway for both ongoing digital and print work and our close relationship means there is less time spent discussing the direction of marketing materials and more time delivering them.

"Cargo are a real pleasure to work with.  They have consistently delivered pragmatic and effective solutions to the challenges we have posed, both from a design and technical point of view.  They understand the need to manage costs, and propose ways to achieve our goals within our budgets.  They also go the extra mile to meet our timescales."

James Sykes - Head of Marketing

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