GAR Foundation faced a unique challenge as we started the website redesign project. Being a foundation that grants financial support, their audience grows on its own. However, that audience had difficulty finding the right information or even knowing how to start the application process once they got to the website. This meant that GAR staff had to field those inquiries, it was obvious our challenge was to create the most intuitive user-experience possible. GAR's website had a wealth of resourceful information on their existing website, however, the content was visually overwhelming. They were looking to reduce the overall volume of content and display it with a different visual strategy. Additionally, GAR wanted greater freedom in managing their CMS (content management system).
Once we understood the details of the website architecture changes that GAR was seeking, we started with the user experience of the header navigation. We simplified it by choosing concise one-word directives. From there we reorganized the content fit within these categories. Also, during the Architecture Phase, we carefully noted the exact details of the application process and we then created an enhanced, simple, and intuitive step-by-step process for applicants. We carried this simplification process over to their blog as well, specifically reworking the Grantee Spotlight section in order to reduce the previous amount of content and focus users attention. Another priority was a reworking of the Grants Awarded page where users could quickly and easily learn about previous grants via two search filters: Search by Funding Priority and Search by Year. Throughout, we worked collaboratively with Dina in revising the copy on most pages.
Potential grantees now have a clearer path to determine if they are eligible for one of GAR’s grants, and the application process is more linear and focused. decreasing potential applicant’s confusion and potential frustration. In turn, GAR has seen a reduction of unfit inquires. Administratively, Dina (and other GAR staff) now have more control over updates to their website, as a result both of the Wordpress Content Management System and the amount of code written specifically to enable the GAR team to make as many content changes as possible. We appreciate the nature by which they collaborated with us: they both knew what they wanted and trusted our web expertise. And they were joyful along the way!