You’ve probably already noticed a few changes around the site. We are incredibly excited to finally share the new CC brand. There are three major changes you’ll see on the site:
- New brandmark.
- Improved font.
- Updated colors.
We interviewed users last fall, which helped us understand what makes College Confidential unique. At the core of our value lies the community. Students come here because of the wealth of knowledge and unbiased feedback they find in the forums. When people talk about College Confidential (in the interviews, on our forums and externally) they often use the abbreviation “CC”, which inspired the final design:
Next our designers and developers looked at the font we are using. There were many considerations and we settled on Inter, which is a sans-serif designed for a wide variety of screens. It resembles the previous font, but is more legible at small sizes. This is important because an increasing number of visitors are using their phone to browse and participate on the site.
Finally, we chose colors to use on the site. In particular, we wanted to ensure the site is accessible to users with visual disabilities. The slash in the middle of the brandmark when through several iterations on color alone. Our designers carefully considered not only what colors are pleasing aesthetically, but also the contrast needed to make them visually distinct.
We sent an email to registered users to talk about our refreshed brand. I won’t repeat it all here, but I do want to quote part of it:
At the heart of CC is YOU, our community.
With your voice and your experiences, we are able to uniquely bring people and college knowledge purposely together.
We have been with you for 20 years, and we stay true to our unwavering commitment to help you make empowered and informed decisions about college and your career aspirations.
That’s why we’re proud to share with you — the refreshed College Confidential, your gateway to real, unfiltered guidance to higher education.
In my experience, communities aren’t excited about change. For the forums, this is largely a cosmetic change. But it serves a larger purpose. After moving the forums to the new platform, we looked at the other parts of the site:
When people come to these portions of the site, they might very well miss that there is a large community of people excited to talk about specific schools, financial aid, how to get into a career in nursing and so on. When we do link to a forum that’s relevant, the page people land on doesn’t feel like the site. So today brings us closer to combining the power of the CC community with data-driven school search and expert guidance.
There’s also a technical reason. Until today, each part of the site existed on a different server in the backend. That means changing even simple things requires more work than it should. Consolidating the design has allowed us to consolidate our technology too. That will free up resources to improve college search, tighten up the user experience on the forums and even revive the mobile app.