Business Design Centre

Strategy and Website redesign for an iconic London venue

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The Business Design Centre (BDC) is an iconic venue in the heart of London, with roots dating back to 1861. Regarded as one of the premier event venues in London, the BDC approached us in 2020 to commission a complete redesign of their website.

The BDC was previously the Royal Agricultural Hall

The Challenge

Their existing website was designed in 2013 and was showing its age in terms of user functionality and veneer. The bespoke CMS was prohibitive to use, which resulted in longer lead times and higher maintenance costs.

Aesthetically, the website no longer represented the BDC accurately; as a unique event destination and design hotspot. The messaging was confusing and inconsistent and the site lacked inspiration and design flair.

Much of the ongoing maintenance and content management process was manual and required hours of dedicated effort to achieve the simplest tasks. This left little time for creativity and experimentation, which compounded the aforementioned issues.

Design Centre Website
The iconic Mezzanine at Business Design Centre


The Discovery Phase is the first phase in March’s workflow and it is where we begin to drive success for our clients. It affords us the time to properly analyse, investigate and report on the client’s business, website and brand.

We produced a comprehensive report for the BDC detailing;

A conference at the BDC
The BDC is one of London’s premier exhibition and conference venues

The Solution

The solution was a complete redesign and build of the website from the ground up. We opted for WordPress as the Content Management System – a platform that is both flexible and user friendly. In addition, many key members of the BDC team were familiar with using it, which would help their workflow. WordPress gave us the ability to employ a bespoke Business Design Centre website whilst allowing the freedom to develop the site to satisfy the key goals and all functional requirements.

We used the insights from the Discovery phase and built a new structure and navigation to ensure the user never felt lost and could easily understand how to traverse the site at any given point. The personas directed the reorganisation of content, driving new sections for Visitor, Organiser and Exhibitor.

A new filter was added to the event section to allow Visitors to quickly find Events. This section also adopted a new lazy-load feature so that it is easy to see all available events simply by scrolling down, all whilst reducing initial load times. A similar filter was adopted both for the Residents Directory and again for the Insights section.

UI Design Event Listing
Event listing user interface design

New processes, driven by a My Account section and various data capture forms, enabled the Marketing team to offload many of the daily tasks which took up time. Allowing different user types (Residents, Event Organisers and Local Business) access to their own content and listings with a moderation system meant the control was put into the hands of the users rather than being the responsibility of the Business Design Centre website team.

UI Design Forms

If you’d like to discuss how March can provide design and online solutions for you, please get in touch.

Design Centre Website BDC Mobile Site BDC Tablet Website Design

Over 30 functional requirements were satisfied in order to achieve the four key goals as defined in the Discovery phase, including:

1 – Reduced monthly overheads for both time and cost by providing a CMS which allows the marketing team to effectively manage the website.

2 – Increase exposure potential with improved on-page SEO and site speed coupled with modern best practice development techniques and asset optimisation.

3 – Generate more leads via the introduction of context-specific forms within the reformed topology and improved funnels via and improved navigation.

4 – Improved the User Experience across all devices via an optimised user flow with an improved topology, taxonomies and filtering functionality.

BDC Website BDC Mobile Website

March rebuilt the Business Design Centre website from the ground up, resulting in greater usability, better organisation, bigger impact and less overheads. The Marketing team now have a tool they can use effectively to grow their business and online presence as well as a platform which can scale and grow as they do.

Visit Website Visit Website
Working with March has been a fantastic experience. From start to finish (although we continue to work together) they’ve been supportive, creative and personal. March came recommended from more than one contact and were not the lowest priced option, but you certainly get all and more of what you pay for with them. Their service is trustworthy, the design is more than we could have hoped for and the fact it's all been based on solid and specific research is both impressive and reassuring. I know that we have begun a long-term relationship with the March team and look forward to building on this into the future.
Kate Simpson
Marketing & Communications Director, Business Design Centre

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