The staff here at Designerly love a website that encompasses all of what a business model is about. The Villages is an over 55 retirement community in central Florida, about an hour northwest of Orlando and around 75 miles northeast of Tampa, Florida. Their website is the perfect mix of modern and traditional for our monthly website award.
We spend time scouring the internet for interesting and functional designs. As we select each monthly website award winner, we take the time to consider if the site meets user needs effective, if the design is aesthetically pleasing and if it hits many of the modern design trends popular on the internet today.
Once we have a handful of potential monthly website award winners, we dig a bit deeper. We test the site on different screen sizes, try out any forms, click on all links and check for things such as alt tags. It takes time, but there is usually something that makes one page stand out over the others and helps us make our final selection of the month.
Winner: The Villages
According to Statista, about 16.63% of the population is over 65, with people turning 50 and older every day. The baby boomers continue to age, but Gen-X begins hitting their 50s, making the market a growing segment. Retirement communities should continue to grow in popularity and attract more and more seniors seeking an all-in-one solution.
We love the serif font combined with a script to set off the wordmark logo and words such as “Adventure.” The design also puts the scripted letters in a different color, such as gold to grab user attention even more. The effect is almost subluminal but leaves behind a sense of adventure of fun.
What Is The Villages?
The Villages is a retirement community that is almost like a town in itself. Rather than a small neighborhood, it is a huge collection of a variety of neighborhoods. Each section offers unique looks and charm, but residents can ride a golf cart to various amenities in the community.
The Villages is made up of restaurants, shopping, golf, tennis courts, pools, town squares, live entertainment and fun activities. Go see a movie at the Rialto Theatre and then head to Old Mill Playhouse for an evening. Hike the parks and trails or participate in one of the thousands of resident-led social clubs, covering topics such as art, music, crafting, books and philanthropy.
Some of the smaller homes start around $200,000 and are a one, two or three-bedroom villa with a tiny yard. They also offer small ranch-style homes, veranda homes with up to four bedrooms and custom designer houses. There a a few select homes called “Premier” that sell for over one million dollars.
In theory, you never have to leave the Villages once you move in, but if you do want to leave, you’re close to beaches and theme parks.
Why We Chose Them for the Award
As always, we considered websites from a variety of industries and categories before settling on retirement community sites. We then listed out the features of each site and how many trends it hit. Finally, we went with our gut instinct and the design we felt was least cluttered but most visually pleasing.
- Video Hero Image – Video isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Wyzowl’s latest Video Marketing Statistics report found over 99% of those using video for marketing plan to continue to do so. At the same time, around 88% of people want to see more video from brands this year. The hero image works perfectly to set the tone for the
- Calls to Action (CTAs) – Note how the CTAs appear above the fold and are in stark contrast to the background. They embrace a current trend of having a transparent background for one of the buttons.
- Color Palette – The color choices of the website are spot on and speak of elegance and experience. Most people like the color green, but it serves two purposes in this design. First, it hints of outdoor experiences. Second, it is a deep, rich color that shows The Villages is a desirable place to live. Finally, the bring in gold with the CTA button and some of the letters, hinting at the golden years.
- Limited Categories – When you land on any of the pages, you see a navigation bar across the top of the page. The options there are limited to five categories and anything else falls into a subcategory and goes under those options. Keeping choices short gives the site a streamlined, uncluttered look.
- Grid Layout – Although there is something to be said for an asymmetrical look, The Villages plays it smart and goes with a more traditional look that will be familiar to their older customer base. Under the fold starts a grid layout with images and headlines that highlight various aspects of the community.
- Beautiful Images – The internet is a visual medium. The photos you use on your site can bring your business to life. The Villages does an excellent job of creating a theme of activities and perks of living there. Each page shows different aspects of the community, highlighting all the positive points.
The design for The Villages combines modern trends with traditional styles. It is perfectly suited for seniors.
What We Would Do Different
There isn’t much we’d change about this gorgeous and functional website. The only suggestion would be to offer the newsletter signup higher up on the page as a popup or part of the menu. Everything else works well for this industry.
The designers should also run regular split testing to see how the target audience responds to any minor or major changes. It was our pleasure to take a closer look at the design of The Villages website. Next month, we’ll find another amazing design and share it with you for inspiration.