Experience Malaysia.com – powered by Gossamer Threads
Gossamer Threads recently completed development on the relaunch of Malaysia.com. Designed to be the ultimate resource for Malaysian culture, cuisine and travel, Malaysia.com extensively uses Gossamer Links to deliver its content whether that’s in the form of hotel listings, recommended Malaysian dishes, or video galleries.
Gossamer Threads also developed a modular and intuitive architecture and site design for Malaysia.com’s content from the ground up, building a site which offers an easy-to-navigate and aesthetically unified design, and can seamlessly integrate new content.
Using GLinks as a CMS
Gossamer Links generates the Experiences, Tour Packages, Accommodations and Videos pages for Malaysia.com. While each of these site areas serve extremely different purposes and deliver radically diverse content, they are all powered by a single GLinks installation!
Malaysia.com uses its Experiences pages to offer detailed looks at individual dishes, beaches, jungles, cities, and cultural events across Malaysia. Each of these are set up as categories in the Gossamer Links installation, with individual experiences (the infamous durian fruit, for example, or the capital city of Kuala Lumpur) organised within those categories as individual link records.
Link records are also used to generated the tour package pages which display images, detailed info, and price ranges for the site’s Malaysia tour packages.
An extensive series of columns were added to the link table to facilitate detailed hotel records, containing address, rating and amenities information. Would-be travelers can also book hotels and flights through our integrated Travelocity forms!
Hotel amenities pulled from the database, and a nice booking engine
Malaysia.com’s video gallery is also stored in a separate category of the Links installation.
The links table has been customised to promote cross-referencing between all of these different types of links – related link IDs have been entered in the record for the entry on Penang Asam Laksa, a noodle soup dish native to the island state of Penang. These IDs prompt GLinks to display accommodations from the Penang category under the Hotels listing on the Penang Asam Laksa page, as well as a video on the topic of the dish on the side of the page.
This cross-referencing was a key element in the design of Malaysia.com, and a great example of Gossamer Links’ adaptability as a content management system – allowing for all of Malaysia.com’s content to be stored in a single database, and promoting lateral browsing by the site’s visitors.
Malaysia.com operates on the philosophy of allowing its visitors to “Experience Malaysia”. With this in mind, Gossamer Threads’ designers set out to craft a look for Malaysia.com that wasn’t just unified and easy to navigate, but was as inviting and immersive as the country of Malaysia itself. They decided upon taking an approach which was highly visual, utilizing photos and textures to showcase the beauty and contrasts of Malaysia.
The main navigation
The image-backed navigation lozenges which act as a header throughout Malaysia.com were created with those principles in mind. The lozenges are intended not only to provide stability and easy movement throughout Malaysia.com’s pages as the user explores the site, but also to ensure that a variety of colours and images from across the spectrum of Malaysia were always present during site visits.
Colours were selected to thematically represent each of the site areas, with the subnav, text and borders of pages within those areas adjusting to give each area a look to match its content, as well as subtly remind the visitor of their orientation on the site.
Widescreen marquee images became a major element in the design of Malaysia.com, with pictures from across the site’s image galleries rotating through high-profile marquee frames throughout the site and linking to specific category and detailed pages. As users drill-down into more specific pages and content, the images change to become more specific – the home page marquee features images from a selection of Experience pages, and the marquee on the Food page shows off images from the site’s pages on Malaysian cuisine.
Above the marquees, category, sub-category and detailed page names are displayed, again to help the user stay oriented.
A top-level domain needs top-level hosting to accommodate its traffic. Gossamer Host’s servers were an ideal home for the heavily indexed and search engine optimized pages of Malaysia.com.
Running on a dedicated server which gives it room to grow and adapt to higher traffic levels if needed (like our friends at Magnify.net), Malaysia.com enjoys fully managed hosting, with round-the-clock surveillance of the server’s CPU usage, system load and bandwidth.
The Total Package
The development of the new Malaysia.com required something from every one of Gossamer Threads’ departments: products, web design, customization and hosting. It was a large and multi-faceted undertaking, but one which we’re extremely proud of.
Take a look around the site and see what the GT treatment can do for your domain!