School admin software company needs simple, clean, modern web site

Sequoia provided an innovative and very appealing web site design. The products we sell are software-as-a-service (SaaS), cloud-based applications: 1) ThinkWave Administrator is school administration software, and 2) ThinkWave Educator is free gradebook software. The design Sequoia provided is appropriate for our education customer base and the modern design allow our company to stand out from our competitors.

$1182 paid

41 custom designs

12pre-qualified designers

Learn more about Website Design Contest

Winning design #41 by Sequoia, Website Design for School admin software company needs simple, clean, modern web site Contest
Gold Medal

designed by Sequoia

Project description

We are looking for a redesign of our home page and one secondary page. We want the new design to be simple, clean, and modern. The company should be presented as reliable, user-friendly, and cutting edge. The products are software-as-a-service (SaaS), cloud-based applications: 1) ThinkWave Administrator is school administration software, and 2) ThinkWave Educator is free gradebook software.

Please refer to detailed specs here:

Read full brief


  • Dear thinkwave, I worked on entries 4 and 5. I am showing you a different photo to show you how the photos would rotate and show the diversity of your market. I believe it will make your site more dinamic and interesting. Everything else would remain the same. I have added the facebook "Like" button to the top, right next to the main menu to make more presence of social media in your website. I hope you like it.
  • thinkwave, Thank you for your answers. You will see my concept soon. Thank you.
  • #3 Dear Claunch Design Studio, You have some interesting ideas, the twitter / facebook buttons near the Login button, for instance. One thing to note is we have 2 calls for action from our home page 1) individual teachers to start a gradebook and 2) schools to start a school admin software trial. We can only see one call to action on your design. Thank you
  • #2 - Gerrit - it was not our intent to eliminate your submission, and apparently, we cannot reverse the elimination. This is our first project with Designcontest.
  • Dear Sequoia, The idea of rotating images is potentially interesting. We sell in the US to Kindergarten to 12th grade, public/charter/parochial schools. We also sell to small colleges, vocational schools (such as hairdressers, mechanics, emergency medical technicians). And also to locations as disparate as Jerusalem, Kenya, Kuwait, Tadjikistan, Guatemala, Brazil, China, and more... Thank you
  • Dear eximus, We're willing to cut back the wording for design purposes. We are trying to speak primarily to 2 groups of customers, 1) individual teachers to start a free gradebook and 2) schools, to start an admin software trial. So we'd like to feature 2 main calls to action, including the following words: 1. "ThinkWave Administrator: School administration software with easy setup, seamless integration of teachers with administrators, and clear pricing." Start a School - 30-day free trial and Learn more 2. ThinkWave Educator Free gradebook software with flexible grading options and powerful reporting. Start Gradebook and Learn more We feel that's the minimum wording required to communicate, on our home page, that we have two products for two target markets - Administrator for entire schools, and Educator for individual teachers. But we are also here to see your ideas. If you feel that less wording can communicate the same idea (visually, somehow?) - that's great. More words can also be put to use. Let us know if this answers your question.
  • Dear Contest Holder, This website design is very simple and clean. I integrated a left-aligned menu bar as you requested in the brief and made the menu pop out by creating individual menu buttons. I kept the color scheme light so the viewer is not overwhelmed, but stayed with the bright sunflower feeling of your current website. I chose to use a variety of photographs with teachers and students of various age groups to emphasize the fact that your company works with all age groups. The login button has been integrated into the top right corner of the website for easy access, as well as the "follow" buttons for facebook and twitter. Sincerely, Claunch Design Studio
  • Dear CH, About your comment on using photos of people, would a rotation of photos with different people of different ages make for it?
  • Dear CH, One more quick question. In your assignment you didn't state that you need to save the brief explanation of features of you products on the home page (free online grade book, premium package, admin software). You said we need to save somehow 'call to action buttons' for these. So it's a bit confusing. Would you like to see all these things or are you planing to show them on inner content pages? Again, based on the first entry, it seems like you don't need them. Please clarify what is more important for you: to have a bit more text on the home page or reduce the text toward more appealing visual presence? Thank you.
  • Thanks for your design Gerrit. Just some feedback: 1. We do use the sunflower image, but the sunflower shouldn't be the focus. 2. Our home page structure [top product / bottom product] looks a bit dated to us, and we are hoping for a new structure, or even just an improvement on our current structure. We don't mind if some of the home page text is eliminated.
  • DESIGNERS! Please read the rules on commenting in contests. w/46/6/rules-for-commenting-in-a-contest-page If I see more comments asking for feedback, or just highlighting your entry, infractions will start again. Our guidelines are very clear as to what to write and what not to write. You can write a brief description of the entry, answer a CH question or ask the CH a question about the contest only.
  • Dear Sequoia, Your design is appealing. 1. We need to pitch two products, to two different target markets, on our home page. If you can replace the top login block with: "ThinkWave Educator Free gradebook software with flexible grading options and powerful reporting." And the bottom login block with: "ThinkWave Administrator: School administration software with easy setup, seamless integration of teachers with administrators, and clear pricing." The login block is needed after the school or teacher has already started using the product. It should be easy to find, but not the focus of the design. 2. Our product is used by Kindergarten through College. So images with people should not necessarily be limited to small children. The way the sunflower wraps is great though.
  • Hello eximus, Yes, we are okay with the top part of the page not matching the top part of the application. I'm going to change that condition to "optional" in our briefing. Yes, I will consider content + right column, but we prefer left column because that will mean less work to deploy. Thanks!
  • Dear CH, Just a quick question: in the brief you said you need to match the top part of the page with the top part of the application. Is that an absolutely necessary condition? It's kind of an "old" approach to the design. The first entry does not have a banner. So, I assume you are ok with that and the application probably will have only a logo and maybe something else (for instance a few administrative links, such as preferences, account, etc) to keep it clean and simple. Please confirm. Also, you said you are looking for a seo-friendly design, would you consider to rearrange the inner page as "content + right column", because browsers and crawlers read pages from left to right and from the top to bottom. And the column with is too narrow from usability point of view. Please let us know what you think about all this. Thank you, and I am in :)
  • Hello Sequoia - thanks for your design. The actual username / password input fields should remain on the Login subpage, not the homepage. The places where you have the two login blocks perhaps could be replaced by marketing text for our school admin software & gradebook.
  • Oh, by the way, the images used belong to istockphoto, if my design ends up winning, I can buy those for you. Thanks.
  • Dear thinkwave, I have worked on your home page. I saw you suggested to take of the "tagline". However I have added it, it can be changed by any other text you may want to highlight, I just used it to show you where it would be shown. I think it is important that you keep some short-quick to read headline as to support your logo. I hope I got you right with all your requests. Sequoia
  • We will code and build the website - this is a design project. It would be helpful if the design allows us to optimize for fast image loading (we can make the sprites), but we will do the .html ourselves. We use a templating system where the home page is one design, and the secondary pages all use the same secondary template.
  • Dear Contest Holder, Do you need a designer to code and build the website? Or is this simply a design project? This would be very helpful information, thank you! Sincerely, Claunch Design Studio
  • Dear CH, Let me share my thoughts regarding your feedback below. 1. I think a usage of boxed software images is a strong visual representation of the fact that your company deals with software development, on other hand, maybe they should be changed.. Anyway, the images of boxed software doesn't always means that you provide boxed versions. It's a common practice to show software like that. I'll try to come up with something new regarding this. 2. I didn't pay too much attention to the sunflower (actually it is a sticker), because the image of children has a watermark so I'll have to make the collage once again if you decide to go with this image. In that case I'll do it more realistically. Moreover, I don't think it is a good idea to put sunflowers in all the free spaces, because my design already has them in the content on the boxes. I'll see what I can do about this. 3. Got it. 4. I think using nice pictures of people and collages is a good thing, it is more appealing for the customers. Moreover I created the top part as a slider, so you can make different slides with all your consumer groups. If you don't like this idea and you want a static top part, I'll try to use more neutral images. Again, thank you for your feedback.