Every vessel that sails the sea must be flagged to a nation. It’s like the DMV. Every yacht, every shipping vessel, every oil tanker must be officially registered, and carry the flag of a home country. For the Republic of the Marshall Islands, vessel registration is big business.
Website redesign and brand refresh for the steward of the seas
International Registries, Inc. (IRI) has administered maritime programs since 1948. Hundreds of thousands of users visit the IRI website each year. And they visit with a specific purpose in mind. The IRI website is a resource for legal documentation, registration forms, seafaring regulations and other key data for vessels flagged in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. It goes deep, literally.
For more than a decade, IRI had maintained a web 2.0-style site, built on .net, powered by an Oracle database of documents and forms. The site was massively out of date with current web technologies and usability requirements, but it contained thousands of documents that users depended on. In order for global seafaring commerce to work, IRI has to be operational.
- Founded 1948
- Offices in 28 countries around the world
- Serving the Republic of the Marshall Islands
- Providing for specialized needs of shipping and financial services communities
- Operating vessel and corporate registration
Building the Brand
The website redesign and development would transform and modernize the IRI brand. But in doing so, we needed to preserve a connection to the company’s storied history and existing identity. We created a slight refresh to the logo, and established a design system to create a standard of reference for the new brand.
New Color Pallete
Completing the Vision
While IRI is an independent, privately-held company, it is closely aligned with the identity and interests of the government of the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Therefore, it was important to bring forward the colors and flag and the nation within the IRI brand.
The Full Story
International Registries operates an essential service for the global maritime community. It’s website is the hub of activity. Users from around the world visit the website on a variety of devices – computers from aboard vessels, at port offices, on mobile devices – while on land and at sea. Users need to find necessary documentation and registration info in order for their vessels to be legally authorized to sail.
For more than a decade, IRI maintained the previous generation of its site. That current version was problematic in many ways – it lacked an intuitive content management system, navigation was complex and unclear, the site design was dated, and overall user experience was poor. But the site was critical to global commerce, so making changes was a risky prospect. IRI leaders needed a partner they could count to not only be creative, but also reduce risk and create a technically high-performing site.
- Revise and simplify website navigation
- Create a streamlined and interactive user experience
- Create a more modern, innovative design
- Create a library system to organize and manage thousands of documents
- Create an intuitive backend and CMS that IRI personnel could easily manage
The Full Story
Punch worked closely with IRI leaders to thoroughly document requirements to ensure that both teams had a full understanding of the goals and necessary functionalities for the new site. The project would require integration of the legacy Oracle database, and the new WordPress content management system. In addition, the site would require creation of a custom post type for and a unique post for each document. This would allow for the creation of an interactive document library with the ability to sort and filter via menus, and keyword search of post metadata. Punch created a comprehensive migration plan, and followed a rigorous process to ensure accuracy and efficiency.
From a design perspective, the site is a significant transformation from its previous generation. The new Punch design incorporates bold photography, balanced proportions, clear calls to action, a clean and visually clear type hierarchy, and many subtle interaction elements. One major advancement in the redesign is the prominent use of people in photography – this communicates the real, human element of the brand.
- Brand refresh and creative themes
- Requirements documentation
- Sitemap, wireframing and prototyping
- Design of variable pages
- Copywriting for new sections
- Website development, including Oracle integration
- Ongoing website hosting and support
IRI successfully modernized and revitalized its web presence to better serve customers around the globe
The IRI website redesign and development project was a considerable success, representing a major modernization achievement for IRI leadership, and a technical accomplishment for Punch. Now, users across the world are able to quickly and simply access the important corporate and maritime documentation that they need in order to do business on the seas. The site features a comprehensive library that users can easily sort and filter. The site is built on an intuitive content management system that allows the internal team to easily manage the site. Now, the Republic of the Marshall Islands has a new resource to help advance its role as the center for global maritime commerce.
”The IRI website redesign and development project was a considerable success, representing a major modernization achievement for IRI leadership.