Here Comes The Guide helps brides find wedding venues and vendors.
We upgraded and re-platformed HCTG's underlying CMS.
Over many years of business on the web, technical debt had accrued and had to be cleared.
Building on several years' worth of knowledge about the site gained through working together, we knew where best to optimize.
This project took a bit more than 6 months to complete.
We overhauled site search, increased speed and added more paid placement opportunities.
Here Comes The Guide had been a client for a number of years prior to the re-platforming project we took on with them. Their website was moved from ExpressionEngine to Craft 2 prior to our involvement. Our project was to upgrade their site from Craft 2 to Craft 3. However, there was so much about their overall system architecture that we all wanted to change that we took the upgrade opportunity to totally overhaul their system. The effort was so significant that the end result was basically a new website platform.
HCTG primarily makes money by selling listings in its directory. Wedding venues pay to list their property with expanded features and more prominent positioning. Because of how the system was originally built, the permutations for listing types and service level was limited. We worked with HCTG to change the system architecture to open up the business opportunities of many different kinds of listings and features.
The new platform offered a great deal more flexibility and creativity.
The publishing process was greatly streamlined to optimize ease and efficiency. Onboarding of new customers happens much faster now, improving a core business function. Time saved in publishing is value created in more creative tasks.
Anytime you can streamline a web process, increased revenue is one of the results.
Over time, any web system builds up an accretion disk of workarounds and kludgy fixes. Sometimes factors of time or money do not easily allow for ongoing code refactoring. HCTG is an old company in internet time. They had a great deal of built-up cruft in their code and in their business rules. We took the opportunity created by the re-platforming effort to fix all of these outstanding issues.
HCTG is now kludge-free.
When you refactor and rearchitect code, you also have the opportunity to apply what you have learned about performance bottlenecks in a web system. Slow page loads bear directly on a website's overall Web Reliability Score. One of the things we enjoy most about this project is the immense improvement gain in page load performance.
The faster the page, the happier the customer.
The job of Here Comes The Guide is to provide a useful resource to help brides find wedding venues and vendors so that they can create their perfect wedding day. SEO is key. It's core to the business. Making sure that brides can find HCTG and find exactly what they want is critical to reliable customer flow.
This re-platforming project repositioned HCTG's SEO capabilities. HCTG is now able to more quickly respond to the most current SEO strategies and tactics.