Website good practice guidance for local authorities

Resource Futures was appointed by WRAP to develop a Website Good Practice Guide and Website Evaluation Tool for local authorities.

Both tools would support authority officers in improving the quality, accessibility and effectiveness of the waste and recycling information on their website.


Ensuring residents have easy access to comprehensive and simple to use information on how they should manage waste and recycling is critical to improving collection rates. As reduced budgets impact councils’ ability to produce printed materials, digital channels are becoming increasingly important.

WRAP was keen to help local authorities maximise the benefits that website content can bring as part of a broader communications strategy. Through a tool that evaluates existing content, and linked to a guide that provides targeted recommendations for improvement, WRAP aimed to support authorities to maximise engagement with residents, and build stronger business cases to drive digital change where necessary.


Resource Futures reviewed the effectiveness of a sample of council websites to validate our assumptions of what good and bad looked like. This enabled us to identify areas where there was most opportunity for improvement. We followed this with in-depth telephone interviews with a range of local authority officers, using a framework of targeted questions to draw out consistent themes and interesting nuances.

Using this information, we developed content for both a Good Practice Guide and an Evaluation Tool. To maximise accessibility, the tool was created in Microsoft Excel and the guide produced as a hyperlinked PDF. Both documents were designed for use by both waste officers and communications/web teams. They covered common issues and key areas for improvement and were piloted with selected local authorities prior to completion.

The Evaluation Tool was designed to work alongside the Good Practice Guide, with the tool signposting officers to key sections of the guide for advice, best practice, and top tips to improve evaluation scores.

The guide itself included sections on:

  • Building a business case
  • Developing content
  • Navigation and user experience
  • Design principles
  • Accessibility
  • Website analytics

Best practice examples were also included.

The tool and guide were launched in a WRAP webinar for local authorities, with details presented by the Resource Futures development team.


“Local authorities now have access to an easy to use evaluation tool and guide, enabling them to review their websites and ensure they meet the needs of residents.”

Feedback from the authorities interviewed as part of this research suggested this kind of support would be very useful to them. The advice on how to make a business case for improvements was deemed a particularly valuable resource.

Project Information

Services involved

Behaviour Change

Team involved

Sarah Hargreaves
Behaviour Change Lead / Principal Consultant

Sally Scholefield
Senior Consultant / Designer