The Papua New Guinea (PNG) Post-Courier is the most popular Pacific Island newspaper since its founding in 1969.
Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
It’s a time for change in Papua New Guinea, with long-standing Parliament member Michael Somare retiring from a 49-year tenure as the 2017 election approaches. The PNG Post Courier, proud reporters of national affairs since their inception, sought to improve their digital experience to ensure readers stay informed as possible during the election and beyond.
While their physical newspaper is successfully circulated daily, the PNG Post Courier website faced challenges common to today’s media companies — an older website running on legacy code was proving difficult for the staff to maintain, and engaging fewer users due to slow responsiveness (double digit load times) and lack of mobile compatibility.
The PNG Post Courier, eager to embrace innovation and recently acquired by News Corp Australia, recognized the need for a third party development solution — a team that could come in and quickly understand their business, diagnose problems and execute immediately. Traditional dev shops could get the job done, but didn’t adhere to development best practices or leverage WordPress. This impacted website performance and lent itself to a slower UX for both internal and external stakeholders.
It was then News Corp Australia introduced PNG Post Courier to the Wizeline services team.
Working with a local dev shop presented a set of prohibitive challenges for the PNG Post Courier. The tight timelines and growing technical debt put the website reinvention at risk of falling short before the election.
Enter Wizeline services. The development pod — comprised of software engineers, QA engineers, DevOps managers, UX designers, technical writers and project managers — knew they had to work quickly and efficiently to deliver on time. The team set to work, meeting with PNG stakeholders to understand the existing website, grasp objectives and implement processes and technologies for proven success. They also crafted an architecture and UX proposal, as well as a full product roadmap, which empowered the team to stay on track and deliver on time.
Priority one was to migrate the old legacy code, running on WordPress since 2012. Once completed by Wizeline engineers, the UX owner began work to update the PNG Post visual design. All development and design work was executed in close collaboration between the Wizeline and PNG Post Courier team, constantly communicating between their respective stations in Mexico and Vietnam, and Papua New Guinea. Ultimately, the PNG team put their trust in the Wizeline pod’s vision for success.
PNG Post-Courier website before development work
PNG Post-Courier website 2.0
After a month of rapid development and two weeks of thorough testing, the improved PNG Post Courier website was relaunched well ahead of schedule. This additional time allowed the PNG team to allocate more ad and marketing resources to the new website, positioning them to make a big splash for the June 24th election.
The Wizeline pod dramatically revamped PNG Post Courier digital user experience, decreasing page load time by 82% and boosting daily unique visitors by 78%. Additionally, PNG saw a 50% increase in engagement by mobile users. The optimized design and speed of PNG 2.0 is not only an aesthetic improvement, but one that empowers their readers to stay informed in a transformative political time.