The DT Blog

We try to keep you up-to-date with the latest trends in web development and graphic design, while also writing about our hobbies or trips from time to time.
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Disney Website Transformation

Can you remember what the internet looked like 5 years ago? What about one year ago? No? Me neither. That's why Daniel and I decided to embark on a little investigating using Wow, how things have changed. Chick-fil-A has undergone quite the face-lift! Along the way, there were a few things we noticed all of the older sites had in common.. and we also noticed things the new ones had in common. Here's a sampling from a few common industries: 

Non-Profit Organization

TOMS 2009

TOMS 2014

Toms has changed quite a bit over the years! Five years ago, it was formatted to be viewed on a Standard Definition screen, which is why there is so much wasted space on the right-hand side. It was also very compartmentalized, with a sidebar navigation, and three modules under the feature photo. The overall color of the site is gray and blue. Neither of these colors are particularly "lively," instead they offer a calm, cool feeling. 

Flash forward to today, and we've got one beautiful site! The website was clearly created with a Wide Screen Display in mind with the wide feature photo at he top and the center-oriented content throughout the site. This site is does not have any contained areas, (it's not compartmentalized), so it feels airy and simple. Toms kept the gray background, but amped up all of the other colors on the site. The dark gray navigation bar offers a nice contrast and the pictures (WHOA, the pictures) are so colorful, bright, and simply beautiful!


Forever 21 2009

Forever 21 2014

Forever 21 is known for keeping up with all of the trends, and offering them at nice prices. Much like Toms, Forever 21's old site was also formatted for a Standard Definition display, although they did keep everything centered. Still, there is a lot of wasted space. All of the content of this site is contained within one square, white box. This makes the entire site feel limited, because the content is limited to the box. This is a site that doesn't transcend. The old website's background is gray, with a sharp contrast to the white box, revealing just how contained all of the content is. (not really a good thing). 

Five years later... We've got a clean, airy site. This site makes use of all available space and has all of its content aligned in the center. This format is especially good for making your website compatible on different kinds of devices. The new site no longer feels limited, but it transcends all boundaries, displaying the product well. Although the the overall coloring of the site is basically in gray scale (aside from the pop of color in text), it is still accomplishing a lot with its contrasts. Also, as you scroll down the Forever 21 home page, it is very colorful. The format of the site also allows for any picture to be featured at the top, full color or black and white. 


Mayo Clinic 2009

Mayo Clinic 2014

Mayo Clinic has done an excellent job keeping up with trends and staying true to who they are. Their old site featured many of the same things the previous two sites did. First of all, the site has the same Standard Definition display in mind, causing wasted space. Secondly, is is compartmentalized.. extremely compartmentalized. There is a lot of information on the Home page, and that's okay, but it's formatted in a way that seems overwhelming. There is no one place that my eye can land and just rest for a moment. Also, the background color is, again, gray, making it appear a little bland. 

Fast forward... and we've got a fresh, bright site. Although the site still has some wasted space, it no longer feels as compartmentalized because the white background is the background for the entire site. (With the old site we had a gray background for the base background, and then a white background for the content of the site, making it appear closed-off). The current site now has a large feature photo that really draws your attention and adds a lot of color. Also, the navigation has improved substantially and is now easier to read. The site just feels clean, which is the feeling one may like to have associated with a medical facility! 

Law Office

AAG at Law 2009

AAG at Law 2014

To begin with, we were a bit hard-pressed to find a website for a law office that even existed in 2009. Luckily, we found Arnall, Golden, Gregory Attorneys at Law site. The old site, like all of the others, is designed for a standard definition display. However, this site has a little more wasted space than the others. It is also quite compartmentalized, with all of the content contained in a white box. We can see a place where a feature picture used to be, which probably added a lot of color to the site. The gray background with the bright white content area makes the site appear smaller and more contained.

Now, five years later, we've got a dynamic, unique site. This site has experienced a total transformation since 2009! The entire site has been widened, in order to look great on a widescreen display. It also has sharper contrasts with bright colors to draw attention. The layout of the site is quite unique. It's fun, but also professional. The top section really draws the viewer in, commanding attention. The navigation is also laid out in a simple, pleasing way. 

The Verdict

As we can all see, the internet has changed a lot in the last five years! We've moved from tight, compartmentalized, to free and open. Where does your site fall in this scale? It's best to take a look at where the trend in design is at now, but to also look ahead to the future to make a prediction for what the internet may look like down the road (then design your site with this picture in mind). Although it is moving quickly, you've got to keep up with the internet, or else it will leave your site in the dust.