The gist of this Canadian non-profit website project:
This non-profit website need a way to streamline a lot of the processes their volunteers were doing manually, which took up their valued resources and time. In short, their old site needed to be brought up-to-date with current web technologies that could easily handle event registration and membership purchases. They also needed to issue certificates for their continuing education units (CEU credits), based on events they were holding. I was able to help with them with a WordPress website, in conjunction with existing premium plugins, that could handle all of the above. Their project also included a freshened-up, modernized, custom web design as well.
The nitty gritty details of this organization’s website project:
When this client came to me, their old site was basically not functioning as it should. They needed an easier way to manage event registrations for their organization, and to accept membership purchases. However, it got more complex and detailed, since they are a body that can issue CEUs to play therapists. This meant the need for official certificates to be sent to event registrants who had completed a survey after the event. The certificate could not be made available until that survey was taken.
In addition, the organization had the need to offer different prices for different levels of memberships. Ticket purchases also needed to offer promotions and special discounts, such as for early bird event registrants.
Then, some parts of the site needed to provide member-only information, which were perks of being a member. And, the website needed a way for public users to find a therapist on a member-only directory. Internally, a member directory for member networking was also opted for.
The intersecting needs of this non-profit website meant integrating multiple, compatible WordPress plugins that could handle all the functions the organization needed.
The new web is easily able to handle the needs of nonprofit organizations like this. It allows members or event attendees to log in to their profiles, take surveys, have those survey results be recorded electronically, be download by site admins, and then automatically issue a certificate to members, which can also be downloaded from a member profile page.
The site planning and development was the chunk of work involved, as the back end functionality far surpassed the design needs for this website client. Several rounds of testing were done before launch, to ensure that multiple scenarios of user interactions would go smoothly.
For example, what if a member renews too early? What rules should be set up in that case? What if the organization wanted to give extra discounts? How would the site handle that? What if a member wanted to register manually instead of using the site’s registration feature? What steps would be involved in ensuring records stayed in the one place, and were consistent with accounting balances? All of these questions, and several more, were considered in a careful review of technologies being used on this non-profit website.
The design and layout strategy was content-focused, purposefully including clear labels to get users to the two main functions of the website: attending an event, or becoming a member. It was also deemed necessary, through client discovery processes, that after an event, attendees would need an easy way to find their survey link. This was set up in a clear menu item in a utility bar on the site, next to a login/logout link, which could also be easily accessed without confusion. A newsletter signup box was included to encourage subscriptions, so that events could be further promoted by the organization to non-members or interested parties. And, to help members get marketing benefits out of the website, we also included a “find a therapist” button on all interior pages.
Web development features:
- WordPress, Genesis framework child theme development with customized design and coding.
- Membership website with an event registration system, and learning management system components. These were configured to work seamlessly together.
- Ability to take off-site, secure online payments from the website (with automatic redirecting back to the site) for various purchase functionalities.
- Automatic PDF certificates created upon survey completion for official CEU credits after attending a paid event.
- Responsive, modernized website design, displaying appropriately on mobile phones and tablets.
- SVG and icon font usage to ensure the site’s icons would display clearly on high-density resolution screens (i.e. retina displays).
- Directory of membership business listings to help promote individual services.
- Member-only pages and login profiles.
- User role editing capabilities so that multiple board members can access the site to make edits on select parts of the site. This was to protecting privacy and security on the site.
- SSL certificate later added to help with security on the site’s login areas.
- MailChimp integrations to automatically add site visitors, members or event registrants to a mailing list.
Accolades from the client:
I have worked with Joyce for almost a year and she has been fabulous to work with. Joyce really listened to what I wanted and was looking for in a new website and was able to give my website the look and feel that I wanted. Joyce is very detail-oriented and perseverant making sure that the website functions exactly as it should. She delivers what she promises. This was a difficult project that required many different components working together and Joyce persisted till it all worked seamlessly. Thank you, Joyce, and I look forward to working together on some on-going projects.
–Johanna Simmons, MA RCC, Former President at British Columbia Play Therapy Association
Other work done for this client:
This client hires me for ongoing site maintenance, feature updates or special tasks.