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City of Bruges

From user research to customer-centric, digital services.

The customer

Bruges is not only a world-famous tourist attraction, it's also the familiar home of approximately 118 000 inhabitants. As the 3rd largest city in Flanders, the Bruges city council provides its citizens with a wide range of services. From applying for an identity card or driving license to the payment of subsidies for city-related initiatives.

Laptop and smartphone with the website open.

The challenge

With more than 1 million visitors annually, the well-known city website is the main communication channel on which all city services are offered. The website was launched in 2013 and has evolved significantly over the years. After 7 years, the city council wants to re-examine how they can further optimize to the needs of its users.

Knight Moves gladly accepted the challenge. We carried out an integral user research on in which both the needs of the citizen and the needs of other crucial stakeholders (e.g. visitors, entrepreneurs and internal web editors) were mapped.

Our research resulted in 17 concrete action points for optimal (online) services and a renewed

One of the biggest pain points that emerged from the survey was the difficulty of finding information on the website. In co-creation with the City, we designed a new information architecture (IA) and updated wireframes tailored to the needs of users.

Action points

Optimize the information architecture (IA)

Focus on a customer-oriented information architecture with a clear structure and clear themes so that all information can be found by anyone within a few clicks.

Improve the search function on the website

Analysis of the technical settings of the website search function to increase intuitiveness and usability.

Commit to accessibility in the broad sense of the word

Check information pages for scannability and clarity. Commit to accessible language, plain language and writing for the Web. Carry out WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) checks and put extra effort into user testing with people with visual impairments.

The quest

By means of both qualitative and quantitative research, we mapped out exactly where the obstacles and opportunities lie for an optimal customer-oriented (digital) service of the City of Bruges.

On the one hand, we organized in-depth interviews with internal stakeholders and web editors to map out the city's internal operations and organization. On the other hand, we organized user tests to determine exactly to what extent the current website meets the needs and wishes of its end users. Throughout the research we looked at data from Google Analytics and Hotjar as a driving force for optimizations.

In co-creation with a multidisciplinary team from the City, we designed - based on the insights from our research - a new information architecture (IA) and updated wireframes tailored to the needs of the users.

Integral user research

Interviews with internal stakeholders
User tests of
Interviews with web editors

The result

The renewed information architecture and wireframes offer the city a concrete basis for further optimizing Our research also made the internal vision in the organization much clearer. Customer friendliness is now truly central to the city's digital strategy: residents, visitors, entrepreneurs, etc. must have easy online access to all city services in a user-friendly, accessible way.

Stad Brugge is digitally ambitious, and thanks to a smooth cooperation, we managed to put the user first. Not only on the website, but also in terms of internal organisation and underlying processes.

Renewed wireframes and information architecture for
Under Knight Moves' guidance, we worked together toward an actionable plan for building a customer-focused website.
Carolina Droogendijk - Project manager City of Bruges (IT service)

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