How To Germany

How To Germany, is the one stop shop for information about Moving To, Living and Working in Germany, for English speaking expats.

I started work for How To Germany, in early 2003 and continue to this day. The website and magazine were pre-existing products. I was brought on board to update the look of the the website while keeping the layout and file structure mostly intact to not break existing links from other sites to specific articles, as well as provide ad production and design services for the print magazine.

Services Provided

  • Redesigned and rebuilt their website
  • Recoded the content for better accessibility & Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Graphic design, layout and ad production

I recoded the content of the website to make the information more accessible to its readers and more easily indexed by search engines. As a result of the in-depth, well written articles and recoding of content for better SEO, the Google search result listings have jumped to #1 for about 90 precent of the topics covered on the website.

The How to Germany website has 170+ articles, broken down into 28 categories and around 100 Storefronts broken down into 26 categories. It’s a lot to keep organized in an easily presentable and findable way. The website is Responsive (optimized layout for both large and small screens). All the content is the same, just laid-out different to better suit whatever device the visitor is using. It is all hand coded and maintained with HTML, CSS and a tiny bit of JavaScript.

The articles are presented in a column on the left side of the large screen layout and in an expandable “Article Menu” button at the top of the page in the small screen layout. Listed as categories with a “+” symbol for the ones that have more than one article, that display the total articles on hover on a large screen and on click of the expandable “Article Menu” button on small screen. In addition to the organizational structure of the menu, when a visitor is on an article page the other articles in that category display above the main article categories list for easier access to more information on that topic.

The Storefronts are presented in a column on the right side of the large screen layout and that column drops below the article content on the small screen layout. Storefronts are effectively advertising, but in an effort to add value to the advertiser and the visitor, there is a criteria that must be met to be accepted for placement on the website. The services the advertiser provides must be potentially useful to someone moving to Germany, so the visitor is more likely to have an interest in finding out more about the services offered. To accomodate that interest there is a Storefront page on the website for each advertiser that gives a detailed explanation of their services along with contact information so the visitor can learn even more. This means that our visitors are more likely to find the right service provider for their needs before being shuffled off to another website and the contact our advertisers receive is prequalified as someone who actually wants the services they provide.

The Storefront categories also allow for placement of the ads only on pages related to the services offered, leading to a better likelihood of our visitors exploring our advertisers offerings and finding useful service providers for their particular needs, making the move to Germany easier.

The website also has a Business/Services Directory, akin to a phonebook, an Upcoming Events listing of informational events and an FAQ section. Everything you need for a successful transition to living in Germany.

See it for yourself.

How To Germany Magazine

A few covers and a few ads from How To Germany magazine.