With the Illinois business community facing challenges unlike any in the state's history, an organization that represents its interests in the halls of state government MUST have an effective website! Established on May 27, 1919, the mission of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce has always been to “promote and protect the business climate of Illinois.” Unfortunately, the Chamber's old website did little to advance their mission or reflect the organization's strength and vitality. It featured a basic, template-like design that was not mobile friendly. It also utilized an open-source content management system and a patchwork of third-party plugins to manage sections within the site. Clearly the Chamber required a fresh and dynamic web presence that would better serve the needs of the its members. For their website redesign, they turned to the team at LRS Web Solutions and tasked us with creating a professional, mobile-ready design with an interface that would be both visually pleasing and easy to use. This new site would have to serve all the Chamber's members, but the primary audiences would be businesses looking for a “business hub” with details related to service offerings and lobbyists who would be looking for information about key legislation through the Key Legislation Tracker. Another important element of the website redesign would be the Illinois Chamber of Commerce's Web Store. This fully-functioning ecommerce component would provide members with the ability to purchase items like policy manuals, certification course enrollments, and pre-recorded educational webinars. Based on the Chamber's timeframe and budget, the decision was made to utilize a pre-designed, mobile-friendly theme for the new site. LRS Antilles Content Manager, with its ever-expanding list of available modules, would be the platform on which the new site would be built. LRS Antilles modules to be integrated included List Builder, Form Builder, News, Events Calendar, Web Store, and Twitter Feed. And because fresh, relevant content was a priority for the Chamber, LRS trained their staff on LRS Antilles during the development phase. This enabled them to not only edit down and integrate over 100 pages of existing content into the new site, but also to keep the site continuously updated once completed. Since its launch, the new Illinois Chamber of Commerce website is proving to be a hit with both Chamber members and the staff -- helping them to realize their organization's vision of "A vibrant and prosperous future for Illinois." Visit ILChamber.org.
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