December 20, 2014

3 Champion Design Strategies The Winter Olympics Can Teach Your Website

winter olympics 2014

Without a moment to spare, NBC News revealed a complete relaunch of NBCNews.com – a dynamic, responsive website retooled to deliver the glory of the XXII Olympic Winter Games with vibrant visuals and compelling content to smartphones, tablets and desktops around today’s very mobile world.

The new and mobile-friendly NBCNews.com, in development for more than a year, is an exceptional example of a visually engaging, content-rich platform built to be viewed by any mobile device, anywhere in the world.

What champion web design strategies does the new site geared towards Winter Olympics coverage demonstrate for today’s businesses?

Empowered by a savvy, sleek responsive design, the site is loaded with layers of storytelling, connected with continuous consumption page design allowing for viewers, through infinite scroll, to see related stories and reports. Plus, the newly designed site is bursting with visual content, laden with videos and inspiring images that tell epic stories in seconds.

3 Champion Web Design Strategies

Gold Medal Strategy – Responsive Design

Without question, the highlight of NBC’s Sochi Olympics site is its responsive nature. Elegant and very mobile, the site delivers all of the intuitive grace of responsive design – creating a window for the world to view the Sochi Olympics on any mobile device.

Responsive websites started gaining traction during 2012, when more businesses realized that mobile engagement was critical. By January 2014, responsive designs were a mandate. Mobile device usage is surging, and with it the need for mobile-friendly websites designed to engage viewers and deliver an SEO boost in the process.

Responsive websites allow users to enjoy a website utilizing any mobile device – a seamless, visually appealing platform to engage and retain visitors.

Silver Medal Strategy – Brand Storytelling

A major trend in content marketing is brand journalism – the art of brand storytelling. In its coverage of the Sochi Olympics, NBC will be presenting epic stories of athletes, historical vignettes of the Sochi region and anecdotes from Winter Olympics of yesteryear.

The push for creative, robust content on the site will include powerful stories reflecting not only the historic relevance of the Sochi Olympics, but the brand that is the Winter Olympics itself. A business can, likewise, maximize the content of its site by taking a journalistic approach to its content.

Brand storytelling enables a business to share its philosophy, mission, accomplishments, services and spirit.

Bronze Medal Strategy – Vibrant, Visual Content

NBCNews.com has announced that visitors to its responsive site will be greeted by a masonry-style layout of large, visual blogs featuring imagery taken from NBC news video. This very bold visual design is a key strategy in presentation and viewer engagement – one the network hopes to use to showcase the powerful visuals of the Winter Olympics.

For businesses, visual content sharing, featuring spectacular imagery, is a particularly smart tactic for welcoming visitors to a vivid homepage. A business can intensify its messaging by presenting imagery ideally suited to convey its services, expertise and corporate philosophy.

Visual content – including videos and infographics – allows a website to truly capture, entertain and engage visitors of Olympic proportions.

Launching a new website is a herculean undertaking for many companies. However, it is one well worth the effort. NBC realized its existing website lacked many critical amenities and was not suitable for embracing, and conveying, the spirit, stories and images of the Winter Olympics to a mobile audience.

By revealing a responsive design, rich with visual content and layers of storytelling, NBC is appropriately engaging a mobile audience – one that may very well be visiting your website one day.

Olympics Photo via Shutterstock

7 Comments ▼

Chris Miles


Chris Miles Chris Miles is Founder and CEO of Miles Technologies, an award-winning IT, custom software, web design and online marketing firm in Moorestown, New Jersey. Miles Technologies in 2013 developed business by MILES, a Web based business operations platform designed to support all business functionalities. Miles is an expert in IT and business solutions.

7 Reactions

  1. The NBC website redesign is awful. I get “mobile” pages on my desktop, and it is unreadable. I have stopped using their site since the redesign.

  2. I agree with the visual and responsive design. Visual designs stimulates the senses especially this Facebook or Instagram generation who are used to pictures. These are the designs that works today as it fosters the strengthening of branding.

  3. While I do feel that much of the website is an improvement – there are still many, many flaws. For one, I find the “take a tour” style lightbox that pops up on the homepage when it loads very annoying. I think that the grid layout could be really, really cool, but it’s bogged down with too much going on. My eyes can’t really focus on one interesting thing. I think for a news site as big as NBC, and especially as Olympic sponsors, they should have made a simple, easy navigation website.

    This article, however, is great at pointing out how important responsive web design and great content is for a website. Thank you for sharing!

    Cassandra
    Isadora Design – Handcrafted Web Design Company

  4. I really like the redesign – it uses the cards trend too (which is really Windows-esque). I like how the shadow on the card changes as you hover over it too… It’ll take a while to get used to the change, but i definitely think it’s for the best.

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