RettSchool Online
Rebranding and Web Redesign Project

RettSchool Online is inudstry standard in Texas real estate education. Its long-standing mission is to help individuals increase their success in succeeding in the real estate industry. They partner with VanEd to provide online real estate courses, but also provide their own live, classroom courses throughout the state of Texas. With their site taking a huge dip in search engine rankings over the past year, we wanted to provide them a foundation and strategy for improving and maintaining their SEO moving forward. This was accomplished with a modern and up-to-date, logo and a new, responsive website with content and coding strategies that would surely increase their SEO immediately.

Step 1: Redefining an Old Brand

RettSchool Online's logo and website were updated to say the least. The website hadn't been redesigned since the early 2000s and the logo was outdated and didn't reflect the brand's visions or goals.

A new branding and logo design were crafted, which became the foundation for building Rettschool Online's success in the digital world. The new brand was to represent professionalism and respectibility while also giving off a feeling of understanding and good intention.

Branding Goals and Objectives

-Decide on two font families that would pair with one another and which would be used on the new website as well as in print and digital marketing pieces.
-Develop a professional and modern color scheme, which would also be represented on the website, in the logo, and in print and digital marketing pieces.
-Design a logo that took elements from the old design and helped to make the brand stand out amongst affiliates and industry competitors.
-Design a branding guideline for print and digital marketing, which addresses elements such as the se of imagery, the use of slogans and taglines, and how to focus on blogging, and social media effors, etc.

Step 2: Provide students an easier path to purchasing courses.

It didn't take much UX research to come to the conclusion that RettSchool Online's old site was difficult to navigate. The path to conversion and links to affiliates were difficult to find and the internal site navigation was difficult to follow.

Our plan to create a site that was useable and that emphasized conversion (the amount of visitiors to paying customers) was as follows:

Remove side navigation menu and place secondary, "nested" pages in top navigation dropdown menus. - done
Present clear, universal call-to-actions throughout each page, which direct users to purchase courses or contact RettSchool Online for more information. - done
Display promotions and discounts on "purchase" pages that RettSchool received from affiliate partnership - done
Use Asynchrounous Javascript programming (AJAX) to allow users to access information in modal windows without being directed away from the page. - done

Note: The reason that this type of modern web programming is so useful is that it creates a website with fewer routes the user must take to get to the "conversion" area of the site. Having a user go to a separate page each time you want to present them with new infromation makes the user feel confused and impatient, thus much less likely to want to buy your service or product.

Mixed-Media Content

Creating an LMS that utilized a single learning method (e.g. e-learning games) was not the path VanEd wanted to take. From data that was compiled from student feedback, the team decided to work toward an LMS that offered e-learning methods that benefited all types of learning styles.

With this in mind, new front-end content was created, including fill-in-the-blank exercies with images, scenarios in a "choose your own adventure" style, audio snippets, and various other mixed-media content.

Step 4: Providing quick and accessible development tools

After the majority of the front-end content was created, the next step was to extend the ColdFusion custom tags library and to create a front-end development admin site, which would provide documentation and easy access to the myraid of newly created front-end elements. The goal was that this development admin site would allow course developers a quick way to add the necessary front-end elements to courses to speed up the development process.

-Develop ColdFusion custom tags with multiple parameters to display Bootstrap and jQuery elements.
-Organize these tags into meaningful and relevant categories.
-Provide quick and easy-to-comprehend documentation on how to use these tags within the admin stie.
-Provide other front-end development tools such as image-map generators, live word count tools, and more.