I'm the developer and owner of MyReferenceManager.com, a website that allows students and researchers to collect and organize their books, journals, websites and quotations in an online library. The website was launched on October 1 this year, but requires a redesign of the landing page to make the special features of the website more prominent and transparent to visitors.
Primarily students and researchers, but also anyone who needs help writing an article or book.
The primary goal is to come up with a creative and appealing new layout of the home page that makes certain links more prominent and adds some color and icons to make the content pop.
a) new layout of the home page (content within the red frame of the attached mock-up image) using the existing color scheme and look and feel of the website
b) create new icons/buttons for the Free Trial, Take a Tour and Sign Up links
c) redesign the Quick Links section (layout and position). It should only contain links to Login, Get Started and Search pages (make it so that other links can be added later)
d) rearrange some or all of the current photos. Photos can be modified or only parts of them used.
e) a new "Tell a Friend" link or button
Regarding main text section, I was thinking of some meaningful icons for each of the sections (please refer to the mock-up I attached to the contest description):
a) step 1: building a library, maybe a bookcase icon (bookshelves with books)
b) step 2: an open book with a table of contents (the word 'TOC' on the right page)
c) step 3: maybe a hierarchical/ organizational tree icon
d) step 4: search icon
e) step 5: sharing content, maybe an icon that shows collaboration, sharing.
The color of the icons should match with the overall site color scheme.
Generally, I'm open to creative and innovative designs even if they deviate from the above requirements.