This is a post that could be helpful for any local museum using wordpress (as is this blog).
It has a specific section for our local historical society in Greenfield, MA – founded in 1907 about a community dating back to pre-colonial times.
There are basically two types of web site development: ongoing communications and goal oriented. A ‘professional’ developer or team, focuses on the overall goals and purposes of the organization and the website and takes a very long and detailed view of the site, these tend to be heavy into design both graphic and structure. This is a long and expensive process and makes perfect sense when dealing with large museums or companies. It make little sense nor is financially possible with a typical museums or historical society.
For local and small museums a more practical approach works, and it is based on telling the existing story, and ongoing activities as they happen: often called asap publishing. It requires some basics in layout and look without getting caught up in graphic design and art quality presentation. The design can be slightly more important for an art museum, less so for smaller museums. This is made more possible by selection of the many templates or themes available for a standard CMS (content management system) such as WordPress.
What is detailed below, is oriented to a small museum and expects use of an available commercial or free theme (WP term) for the basic look and the focus to be on content about the organization and about ongoing events as they happen. It is expected that a Facebook page will be used in conjunction for event broadcasting.
- Finding guides for the web site development:
- Defining the site look
Google to find ideas and themes, be wary that many of the articles about design are written by design companies and promote the bigger goal oriented approach. Look for practical advise and case studies.
- google: wordpress themes for local historical societies
- Interesting articles:
Museum Websites Powered by WordPress
Case study: Website Redesign Using WordPress as CMS
how a local historical society stays local but reaches far
- Nearby museums (specific to HS/GF and Western mass)
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