Project Gutenberg is the oldest and largest single collection of free electronic books, with more that 45.000 titles founded in 1971 by Michael S. Hart with the digitisation of the United States Declaration of Independence.
The project is registered as a charity so it’s mainly supported by the users through direct or indirect donations from affiliation programs.
We decided to have a go at re-designing it – unsolicited– and the result was quite good.
Analyse the current website, its structure and what it offers. Contrast findings with commercial ebook counterparts to gain the best approach to move the project forward.
Create a website that looks modern and accessible with a usable interface and eventually think of a more integrated way to monetise the site and support the project without having to completely rely on donations from the users or using standard advertisement banners.
Present a high fidelity design concept of the homepage and the single book page in 3 different versions, desktop, tablet and smartphone and then produce a working prototype with sample data.
To be able to make affective design choices the fist step was to analyse the current website and how it’s structured to find out what are the problems and then research the best solution to fix them.
We started by simplifying the sitemap by limiting the navigation to 3 levels maximum and then we made some wireframes for desktop tablet and smartphones, and worked on improving the usability aspect of the layout.
Considering the age of their average user, the elements on pages were positioned and named in way that made navigation more intuitive, especially on the books page by moving every action regarding the book to the left column and leaving the additional information to the right.
Once we were satisfied we then applied the new brand colours, fonts and made an high fidelity design of the website before building a prototype.