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Case Study

Website for the Gołcza Development Association

A small public benefit organizations which operate in a local scale don’t have many opportunities to raise money for their own marketing. And yet to become recognizable they need to have a tools such as a website or a social media profiles to even start thinking about growth.

A website can be a place in which organization can show its mission and projects as well as a platform for a communication.

Details

Date: Jan 2018 – Apr 2018
System: WordPress
Methodology: Agile
Tools: Axure, Photoshop, Trello, Google spredsheets, pencil and paper

This pro bono project was executed to support a chosen local organization. The aim was to create a simple responsive website in which the Gołcza Development Association could present its activities to authorities and local community.

The target

The subject was a website made for the Gołcza Development Association. The organization which  operates for over 10 years wants to activate acommunity and show how much good it brings to the local area. For that purpose it needs to exist in the Internet and to possess a website.

What we want to achieve?

The Gołcza Development Association needed a place to present all its projects and to share a news about local iniciatives. A website should also enable a quick, simple and direct communication between a community and the Association. In addition the aim was to make the organization more recognizable, increase an interest in its activities and as a result encourage residents of Gołcza to support it. The next task of the site was a professional presentation of the Association to the authorities from which subsidies for subsequent projects could be obtained. Thanks to having a website the Association was to increase its credibility and social trust.

What do we have?

During the implementation of this project I found out that the Association didn’t have a website but only a fanpage on Facebook. However the FB account hasn’t been updated for many months. As a result the only place where people could look for information about the Association’s activity was the official website of Gołcza where this information was lost among many others.

Can a public benefit organization have a competitors?

The Gołcza Development Association isn’t a commercial entity therefore the analysis of competition in this case was limited to getting acquainted with the activities of other non-governmental organizations operating in the Miechów poviat. These entities can potentially submit applications for co-financing to the same organizations and within the same competitions as the Association, and this makes them a competitors.
I’ve checked over one hundred organizations from the poviat and it turned out that the vast majority of them don’t have a website or even a social media profile.
Local organizations from Miechów could be considered poorly recognizable because most of them didn’t use the Internet for promotional purposes. However this doesn’t mean that in the future they won’t create their own websites which is why their existence can’t be considered insignificant.

Who does it right?

I selected about four websites as a benchmarks for the project. All of them were more or less related to the topic of local iniciatives. I consulted selected sites with representatives of the Association so that they serve not only as a model of well-implemented solutions but also consistent with the client’s aesthetic sense.

What we need to make it happen?

The scope has been based on the main goals of the website. Each requirement had a specific function assigned which to be implemented in the website. It is worth noting that even for a small website there are many assumptions that need to be met.

The main problem in this project was a luck of an effective communication with a client. A feedback from the Association was very poor so I made my personal goal to find a potential future users and involve them in the project.

Who is it for?

In this case it wasn’t possible to talk about the analysis of existing users due to the lack of a website in the past. However it was determined that the site should be built mainly for residents of of Gołcza aged 15-60 as well as for various types of public organizations from which the Association could obtain a funding.

Who are our people?

Personas were based mainly on the Association’s goals. The organization wanted to activate especially young adults and make them a part of its future projects. On the other hand it was important to show more mature people what the organization could make for the community.

The website aim was also to be a presentation of the Association to other organizations that was why it should have a more formal character.

What people want to?

Using user stories it was possible to determine what the key functions of the website should be. First one was a communication, second – presentation.

The other important factor was to make it all usable for all of our people. It was about making it pretty simple and traditional but with this cool modern look in order to make it comfortable for young and older members of the community and formal enough for a  representatives of external organizations

How about making it all come true?

A budget of this project was a zero so it wasn’t really possible to make a super advanced original system. But there is always a way to make it work great. I chose to build this site with WordPress as a CMS I knew well and good enough for this purpose.

How to arrange the puzzle?

Below is the original skeleton of the site created for the Association. Howeve  it isn’t identical to the final division of navigation. During further work the architecture of the site was modified (after card sorting).

Can a user flow?

Mapping user activities helpe to verify if the architecture really worked. The main question was if the performance of a key task on the website wasn’t too complicated or whether the priority action worked smoothly.

When we know it’s done?

Prototyping really helped to communicate effectively with a client and to test a website before even launching it. A lot of sketches was made as well as lo-fi and hi-fi wireframes.

First sketches were just a form of a creative process than more detailed ones were consulted with a client and became a base for lo-fi wireframes. That was a place where users started to test a website.

Is it ever really done?

After launching a website it wasn’t really considered  as a finished project. The real test were next couple of weeks. During that time a real users in their natural environmen could give a priceless feedback.