Like many nonprofits, the Cure JM Foundation does more with less manpower and less money than most companies. Their website needed an improved look and feel that worked in tandem with their brand and culture—not against it. Cure JM approached Solid Digital in need of a brand new website, with a variety of goals in mind. With the new website design, the Cure JM Foundation wanted to:
1) Build awareness of the Juvenile Myositis (JM) disease
2) Support parents who care for children with JM
3) Improve fundraising efforts to find a cure and better treatments for JM
The process of brand alignment and web redesign followed our steps of Learning and Discovery to understand goals and details, creating mood and design boards, structuring the site and building wireframes, and adding in content for the full website build out. Solid worked with the head of the organization at Cure JM along with various other staff members and stakeholders.
For the new website to work towards Cure JM’s goals, they needed to two things: make the page manageable on the front and back end; and they needed to speak to the approachability of the site to reach multiple audiences effectively: families, medical professionals, and donors, with families being their #1 priority.
With the previous site, content was everywhere and anywhere. Solid Digital’s team managed to decrease the number of website pages by about 81%, taking 876 pages and consolidating and reorganizing them down to 165 pages total; they also helped create a better plan to manage content and consolidate the content. The teams had a lot of conversations around future state, and Solid Digital worked to ensure Cure JM’s team could handle every aspect of future website updates in-house, with their limited staff—to help save money and manpower.
The site visuals were brought up to speed, with a cleaned up top nav, giving only 6 button options rather than a drop down menu of 80+ links to deep-dive research papers on protocols of Juvenile Myositis. For the website architecture, the old site lacked secondary, overview-type pages, such as a Research page (accessible by the top nav) that touched generally on the role Cure JM was playing in disease research. From those newly created overview pages, the website user can learn more by clicking on volunteer opportunities, more funding information, making a donation, or understanding scientific progress on the disease through research papers. With those “middle ground” pages in the website structure, Solid gave space for the content that needed to be included in each part of the UX, providing more general information instead of diving into granular-level detail immediately. Also to help with approachability, the web design choices included balloons, softened corners, and smiling photos of children. These playful elements worked in tandem with the carried-over Cure JM logo and colors, and helped situate the site between a clinical and youthful/family-focused feel.
The new site also creates a better user journey for those newly diagnosed with the disease, to help guide, encourage, and empower through education about JM. The site functions as a place where families can go to get help with diagnosis, receive advice, find/locate medical providers, and ultimately: feel supported and less alone in their journey. To give that guidance, it was important to minimize text on overview pages, and simplify the navigation so families knew where to go next on the website.
Solid’s team took on much of the strategy, automation, and SEO and they helped train Cure JM’s team on best practices and strategic recommendations, becoming the true partner that allowed Cure JM and their volunteers to maintain their focus on the foundation.
Due to staffing transitions at Cure JM, Solid’s team became the communication hub for the project. To help with any future onboarding and training, Solid ensured that security and updates for the site were fully automated so Cure JM didn’t have to rely on ongoing support, and could use their limited manpower to further the Foundation. Solid also helped create tutorial videos for the website in the admin area, to help with web update overviews or more specific guidance around updating posts, pages or images.
To prevent content overload in the new site, Solid helped maintain structure and organization for the content by creating automated categorization for posts that help contain posts—information on resources, for example—to their defined area.
Additionally, in order to speak to very distinct audiences (families and clinicians) a link just for clinicians was placed in the footer, to keep the focus on families first.
In the end, Cure JM loved the new website, particularly the small details in the design, animations, and photography. The website restructuring and renewed strategy for content creation and management helped the Cure JM team employ best practices for SEO and will help them make sure that the website stays manageable in size.
Solid’s team enjoyed working with Cure JM, helping make an impact on a disease that affects families in profound ways. The newly designed (and simplified) Cure JM site is now able to aid families who are already on a complicated journey of their own.