THE CHALLENGE:

The NC Museum of Natural Sciences reached out to Chariot with a need, an overall goal, and a marketing grant. They needed to improve the online engagement of their community outreach program called Take a Child Outside. The outreach was getting some traction among peers and partners in early childhood education, but the UX of their current website was falling flat.

The museum director had a goal of attracting educators, parents, and organizations to sign up, become a partner, spread the word, and attend their annual, 1-week-long event. They had a growing awareness and the mission was catching on, but they needed a website that could serve as an online hub offering tools and access for both their staff and for the community.

Raleigh Web Design for NC Museum Project

Raleigh Web Design for NC Museum Project

THE PROCESS:

During the Research & Discovery phase, we uncovered a common thread among early childhood educators — they passionately wanted to connect children with nature. Their target audience wanted to get the kids under their care to tap into curiosity about nature and get them outside to explore. Some of our early content ideations included: “Dirty hands. Wide eyes. Full hearts.” and “Illuminating the Natural World.”

We completed a Site Map, followed by UX Design and Website Wire Frames. The nuts & bolts of this project would have to include ways for community partners, parents, and teachers to engage. First, we designed and developed a Partner Sign-Up system that, after admin approval of each partner, would feed into an Interactive Partner Locations Map — or as they call it, a map for Where to Go Outside. Schools, universities, museums, and organizations across the US would sign up to be a part of the program. Users would then be able to quickly find those participants in their area.

Next, we developed a Community Photos upload feature where parents and teachers can upload photos of their children spending time outside. Once each photo was approved by a museum admin, the photo appears live on the website. Lastly, the largest value of this website was the Activities Resources. We designed and developed each Activities page to be expandable so that users would have a quick-link to exactly what they needed. In the website dashboard, admins could easily add more and more content while maintaining the integrity of the experience and the design.

Finally, we had to make it fun AND educational! We designed fun, colorful, animated graphics of insects and educational hover effects throughout the website that helped to drive a compelling user journey to parents and kids, alike.

THE RESULT:

The finished website immediately gained traction — our planning, design, and development had paid off. We had carefully planned and designed a fun, interactive UX all while remaining ADA compliant.

 

 

website redesign traffic results

Feedback and analytics on the new website immediately headed in a positive direction. The museum staff were also empowered; they were able to log into their website dashboard, approve partners, review and approve community photos, and edit the website content for new educational outdoor activities. After the launch, there were significant improvements in traffic, engagement, and community buzz. The number of partner signups improved, and the number of organizations on the location map increased exponentially over the next year. We continue to manage web hosting and website security. The program and the website continue to be a success today.

takeachildoutside.org

Raleigh Web Development Results
web design research & discovery process at Chariot
Discovery uncovered the main concerns of the target audience and potential partners.
Site Mapping built a user flow that was intuitive and informative for all users.
Web Design focused on being bright, educational, and engaging for targeted adult users.
Locator Map helped users find partners and resources in their geographical region.
Partner Sign Up functionality helped build exposure while helping the reach of other organizations
Admin Dashboard included approval process, map edits, community photo curation, and content editing.

We are so glad to have chosen Chariot Creative as our marketing agency! The team at Chariot has come through for us with flying colors - quite literally!

Not only did they create a fresh, unique brand and website for our organization, they really showed us what great research, experience, and marketing strategy can do.

- Director of Nonprofit Client

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