How one city changed its website for the better (and has the analytics to prove it)

City of Ferndale
Source: City of Ferndale

A few years ago after I let the first government WordPress theme I created languish, I got an email from City of Ferndale Assistant City Administrator Sam Taylor asking if he could get the latest version (which was no longer available).

Sam’s email was the impetus for building a new theme, now called GovPress, that Devin Price and I developed with his feedback, and Ferndale deployed a beta version in July of 2013 (more on the history here).

Given the recent discussion around analytics and the new, I asked Sam if I could see Ferndale’s, mostly because I was curious as to how or if a new design had changed user traffic and site activity.

I’ll let the screenshot above speak for itself.

What’s important to understand here is that, no matter how small a city you are, you can deploy a low-cost website, including a content management system and design with a simple, mobile-friendly interface and provide immediate results for citizens.

About Luke Fretwell

Luke Fretwell is the founder of GovFresh, co-founder/CEO of ProudCity and co-host of the podcast, The Government We Need. Connect with him on Twitter and LinkedIn or email at


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