New library website proves a hit with readers

Shirley Appleby and Maureen Turnbull from Northumberland County Council's libraries team based in Morpeth.
Shirley Appleby and Maureen Turnbull from Northumberland County Council's libraries team based in Morpeth.
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A NEW-LOOK library website has proved a hit with readers after more than doubling the number of online users.

Northumberland County Council introduced the mylibrary initiative to give each facility in the county its own mini-site.

Previously, the library website attracted an average of just 6,000 visitors each month, but since the changes were made the number has shot up to more than 13,000 a month, and visits to the library homepage have trebled.

Initial feedback suggests that customer satisfaction has also improved.

The new pages include a guide to each library’s services, opening times, directions, events and groups, as well as the chance to browse bestseller charts, view books in the news or find authors of similar styles.

There are also guides to researching family and local history, information for parents to help them choose appropriate books for their children and details of local clubs and reading groups.

Existing customers can reserve or renew books through the site, and an online Northumberland Readers’ group has been set up.

Council Executive Member for Libraries Neil Bradbury said: “While other councils are closing libraries we are investing in a range of innovative schemes to strengthen our service.

“We know that as technology progresses, more and more residents want to access council services online and our new interactive library website is another exciting development in our drive to improve our services to customers.

“We appreciate too that there are still many residents who prefer the personal touch and our team of librarians across the county are always on hand to help.”

The website can be found at www.mylibrary.co.uk