In 2017, Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) hired us to redesign their flagship website. As part of their 50-year anniversary rebrand, our task was to create a modern digital product to spark new relationships with young, first-time donors, and provide best-in-class support to journalists writing about PLF's cases.
Lead Designer, Creative Producer
Case Study Focus:
Strategy, Experience Design
PLF is a nonprofit law firm with a variety of important users. After extensive interviews, analytics, and stakeholder workshops, we identified our highest value users:
leading a stakeholder workshop
with Art director Ernesto Morales
leading a stakeholder workshop with Art director Ernesto Morales
The old website violated a number of usability principles, especially for mobile. Some of the biggest issues:
We performed a content audit and found a static, confusing ecosystem of information. Most pages were hard-coded and filled with broken links to context that had been moved to a new location.
In the new sitemap, we prioritized flexible, user-centered content models by breaking up static pages into discrete, serachable post types and bringing offsite content into the site.
We did 2 rounds of prototyping and user testing, using Invision and Lookback.io.
PLF wanted to collect a lot of information about new donors. In particular, they wanted mailing addresses because their older donors responded well to direct mail. But in interviews, users said they resented getting paper mail and were suspicious of requests for their addresses.
We wrestled with a number of solutions, and found a winner: to help PLF collect mailing addresses without alienating younger users, we reframed the request as an offer of swag, and made it optional on the Thank You page.
How might we:
Feedback from user testing w/ new donors
This [the thank you gift] is great. Another organization got me so many times last year because they kept sending me emails like “Donate now to get this sticker!” and I was like hell yeah I want that sticker.
[The pre-filled amount] seems higher than what I’d be inclined to give naturally, but not by enough to make me not want to donate. It makes me think there must be a reason for that amount.
PLF's cases are focsed on a set of particular policy issues, like free speech and property rights. They believed that their donors cared about some issues, but not others, and would gravitate to pages dedicated to specific issues.
In testing, we found this wasn't the case: users cared about stories, and felt confused by the distinction between issues, cases, and other content. Issues were simply too abstract to be used as site architecture. We had much more positive feedback when issues were presented as context that tied a set of stories together.
user feedback on issues page:
I don't really think about issues like that? I liked the case page, where there was a particular story to get into. I definitely want to see more of that.
We designed the Case Page to be a hub of information that catered to two different users: new donors wanted to be immersed in the story of the case, while journalists wanted quick, digestible highlights and fast access to updates and documents.
Feedback from user testing w/ Journalists
This is great. It’s often hard for me to understand the chronological order of lawsuits. I want to know — which thing happened ﬁrst?
I’m always looking for how can I ﬁgure out QUICKLY what’s at stake. And there it is right there — what’s literally at stake.
I love this. I'm always saying, "You guys HAVE the documents! Don't make me go look for them!" And there they are!
I really appreciate the "track this case" — I have SO much in my inbox, I don't want to have to sign up for every email you send out just to get updated on this.
Navigation isn't fool-proof. We designed a site-wide search that was fast, easy to use, and intuitive to filter.
Navigation isn't fool-proof. So we designed a site-wide search that was fast, easy to use, and intuitive to filter.
Within 90 days of launch, the redesign produced a 200% ROI for our client's investment. Some key metrics we observed over the long-term:
increase in donation frequency
increase in average "small" donation size
increase in average
increase in average monthly revenue
Technology: iwitness design
Art direction: ernesto Morales
visual design: katie kovacs
junior UX designer: johann Ash
brand design: Adam Ziske