With over 86% of the greater Chicago area retrieving their daily news from Sun Times, they’re clearly at no shortage for an audience. Within just fourteen years, Sun-Times Media Group [STM] has extended its reach to 300 communities, providing both print and web-based news service. The only trouble was that their extended reach began to prove troublesome for a cohesive representation on their home-base website, www.suntimes.com.
All forty-one of their branches, as well as their many editorial sites, fed into the home-base site and required the ability to update as quickly as the breaking news they tracked. Ease of use at those branches and the maintenance of a unified aesthetic were not supported by the former site. The issue had always existed as an inherent flaw of their former site, but as more and more people forego their newsprint periodicals and turn to web-based news sources, this minor inconvenience developed into a mountainous predicament.
A reinvention of the old site was certainly in order and it had to happen fast! Sun-Times had numerous internal deadlines centered on the redesign, requiring a lightning-speed turn around for the new site and an absolute adherence to the deadline. We had just two weeks to assess the problem and create the solution. We hit the ground running.