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City Launches New Website & Brand

We’ve launched a new website and a new look for the City of Sunnyvale. The new website is now on an up-to-date, mobile-friendly platform and reflects a user-focused approach to content supported by a bold, modern design. Significant new features like Access Sunnyvale make it easier for you to contact the City from anywhere, track your requests and see what is going on in your neighborhood. Our new brand is a contemporary version of the cone-shaped logo created for us nearly 50 years ago in 1971. Visit and explore the new site – each page has a feedback link for you to let us know what you think. And thanks for your patience as we continue to add content, fix system bugs and re-link the various tools that bring functionality to the site.

At a Glance

  • Mobile-friendly platform
  • User-focused content and organization
  • Multiple navigational and search tools
  • Citywide calendar with event filters to improve search
  • Shareable News & Stories
  • Social media center
  • Map of parks and facilities, sortable by amenities
  • Compliant with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements

Details

Our old City website – one of our most critical sources of information – was a bloated, out-of-date system that needed a complete overhaul to meet user needs. The three-year website redesign project began in 2015 with an extensive review of the City’s current brand system that revealed a vast family of different logos, sub-brands and icons, fragmented messaging, and myriad design styles. Uncovering this inconsistency became a timely and strategic opportunity to develop a new brand system – including logo and design guidelines – that would not only guide our significant investment in the new website, but also enable us to align in how we represent the City organization across all channels and services.

We needed to update our website because:

  • The Content Management System (CMS) was out-of-date
    • The last website update was in 2010
    • The CMS was two full versions behind, no longer supported by the vendor, and unstable
    • The web page templates could no longer accommodate newer CMS systems and needed to be redesigned (i.e., it would be like trying to install the latest Apple iOS on an old flip phone)
    • The site was not mobile-friendly (mobile access to the Internet surpassed desktop access in 2016)
  • The convoluted site architecture buried relevant content under multiple layers and too many pages
    • 90% of our site traffic was to only 20% of our pages
    • Our homepage bounce rate was 71% (percent of times a person leaves the landing page without browsing any further)
    • Example: ‘How to Report Graffiti’ was 7 layers deep
  • Much of our content was confusing, wordy, irrelevant and inconsistent
    • Example: The content for Street Trees has been reduced from 3,000 to 450 words
    • Example:  We had 20 pages and 20 pdfs related to City parks with conflicting information
    • Example:  We had a page describing the life of feral cats
    • The old site had ~650 pages; the new site has ~220 so it’s much easier to find information

The design of our new City logo reinterprets the symbolism of the previous logo (e.g., sun, valley and rays) and reflects current design standards because it is:

  • Scalable (has the same impact at any size)
  • Versatile (horizontal and vertical versions accommodate a variety of applications)
  • Effective in one color and in various mediums (e.g., print, digital, embroidery)
  • Meaningful and unique (designed to intentionally support our brand)

The cost of the three-year project was $700,000, almost 70 percent of which was for temporary staff hired to support the project (e.g., evaluate analytics, conduct user testing, write all-new content, develop new web pages). The cost of the new brand, logo and design guidelines was about 14 percent of the total project and is a long-term investment that will serve to guide all future communications materials and channels.

The new logo will be phased in over time. Most items are already standard purchases with established budgets that are easy to update such as letterhead, forms, brochures and apparel. Other more expensive or fixed items, such as building and street signs, will be updated on their regular replacement schedule. 

Documents and Related Information

For More Information

Communications Officer, 408-730-7535

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