WDET 101.9FM

Website design renewal

WDET Homepage Screenshot
  • Services
  • Development
  • Legacy codebase
  • Server administration
  • User experience
  • Technologies
  • Django
  • Git
  • JavaScript
  • MySQL
  • Python
  • SaltStack
  • Sass

Little Weaver has a way of making the complicated very simple. As a non-developer, it’s been great to work and learn from their team’s expertise.

Courtney Hurtt, Operations Coordinator at WDET

Community public radio.

WDET 101.9 FM, a community nonprofit station in the NPR network and licensed to Wayne State University, serves 150,000 listeners every week in Detroit and the surrounding areas, and their website receives over 20 thousand unique visitors each month.

Slow load times & unintuitive interface.

Over time, it had become clear that WDET's website was not adequately serving the needs of those visitors. Page loads were slow, and older content was hard or impossible to find. Additionally, their custom ad tracking was difficult to use and analyze, and the backend was unintuitive for content editors to use.

Collaborative planning process.

We created several rounds of style tiles for WDET representing a major design refresh that remained consistent with their current brand strategy. Each round was based on discussions with WDET staff and feedback from their internal graphic design team. Separately, WDET content staff developed a list of workflow changes they wanted to see, and together we developed a prioritized list of backend and database changes necessary to support them.

Caching, organization, and simplification.

Over the course of development, we remained in close contact with WDET, working with a staging server so they could easily see and comment on changes. Optimizing database queries and implementing caching led to a significant improvement in page load times. Re-skinning and re-organizing the CMS made it much friendlier for content creators. And we were able to significantly improve the ad management experience by integrating with a third-party service.


The end result: A polished, modern website, pleasant to use and easy to navigate, with an intuitive backend for content creators.