Housing Humboldt is a fantastic local nonprofit organization dedicated to helping and providing housing to low income individuals, families and seniors. When we were approached by one of their directors about helping to provide a website at a discounted rate, we were more than happy to help lend our time, energy and skill sets to get a new website off the ground and help the organization reach people.
Create a new website that better displayed their available property profiles, and had a strong homepage call to action for people to contact and get help, while also encouraging businesses to become partners. All of which needed to be easy to maintain and updated by the staff.
We knew immediately that we were going to craft a responsive site to provide a more user friendly and accessible website. Next we turned our attention to reformatting their original homepage into key sections to split the "wall of text" up into quickly digestible sections for a better Call to Action. We then focused on revamping their property profiles to increase the speed that they load, and increase the information associated with each property to help users make more informed decisions.
We were able to craft a beautiful and clean website that is easy to update by the staff.
The site is significantly more user-friendly and capable of being accessed on all devices thanks to its responsive framework (which also provided a huge SEO Boost).
Housing Humboldt's Properties are now displayed in a clean fashion providing significantly more information to users.
Their website receives on average 1000 visitors a month and now receives on average 43.91 contact submissions a month - 1-year post launch. Which means that people are finding the site and utilizing it like never before.
Mobile traffic now accounts for 44% of all traffic to the site.
Dedication to Community
"Our love for our North Coast roots runs deep..."
Housing Humboldt’s website had fallen into a state of ill repair. Not by anything the staff had done, but the WordPress installation had simply stopped working and proved too cumbersome for the staff at Housing Humboldt to manage. When one of their directors Bob Lawton approach our team about helping Housing Humboldt clean up and refresh their online image, we knew we had an opportunity to not only help out a local non-profit, but to also help the community that we live in. This was a golden opportunity to ask ourselves not only: “how will this make our client happier, more effective, more successful?” But to also ask ourselves: “how will this make our community happier, more effective, more successful?”
Our love for our North Coast roots runs deep, and being able to help the greater community that supports us drove us to take on the challenges of Housing Humboldt’s website needs.
A Homepage that Speaks
When we sat down with Beth Matsumoto, a key staff members at Housing Humboldt, we quickly realized that there was frustration stemming from their prior website not presenting a quick and clear message for visitors to understand who they were.
We decided that the best course of action was the present their slogan “connecting families & homes” loud and clear, while also promoting their mission statement to front and center on their homepage. Furthermore, we capitalized on two focal points of their organization (Property Management and Affordable Homeownership) to provide even more clarity to a visitor about this organization's goals. Much of this information was already present on their old site, however, it had become lost in a "wall of text." By splitting the information up into quick, digestible segments, we were able to easily highlight what visitors needed to know when they arrived at the site.
homepage average bounce rate 30.92%
average duration on homepage 1 minute
How we reformatted the homepage for maximum effectiveness
Below you can see a screen capture of Housing Humboldt's new website with some text sitting above it. This is the text that appeared on the original homepage. Because there was no break in the content, or any headers to signify what ideas were being addressed, the text on the old site would simply be skipped over by visitors. By taking that same content and breaking it into three distinct sections we were able to let the original content sing much louder and ultimately provide information to visitors quicker.
In the example below:
The red #1 highlights the mission statement from their old website
The green #2 highlights the Property management part of the organization
The yellow #3 highlights the affordable homeownership part of the organization
Text as it originally appeared on the Homepage
Text after we had reformatted it onto the new Homepage
By breaking the text up into logical sections and placing headers with clear and short titles the homepage becomes much more approachable.
When we began the project one of Beth’s goals was to overhaul the property profiles to display a richer presentation of the individual properties through better use of images, and information regarding these properties. What they needed was a clear and clean method for people to explore and learn about the different properties before inquiring about them.
We were able to solve this by creating an easy-to-update section dedicated to properties, which can automatically pull highlighted properties to a display on the homepage. In addition, we set up a system that dynamically filters properties based on their type. This provides users a display of the properties that is not only more accessible, but is more friendly and informative.
% of site exits from properties page = 17.21%
average duration 1 minute.
Dynamic, easy to use, fast to load
Below is a screen capture of Housing Humboldt's new property profile display. This GIF demonstrates how the site is able to filter the content quickly into categories, which ultimately speeds up the display of search results by decreasing the amount of data required for the page to load. For a website that is to be accessed online from a range of mobile devices, this is handy in providing a fast and seamless experience for users.
By resizing the web browser on a desktop the website's content changes shape and size according to the size of the viewing screen. The menu provides a clear example of how a responsive menu can provide ease of access on mobile devices.
Mobile use now accounts for 44% of all traffic to the site.
Additional stats: (mobile vs desktop)
pages/session | 3.39 vs 3.83
average session duration | 2:41 mins vs 3 mins
bounce rate | 42.41% vs 35.79%
Footer Call to Action
The homepage now features a footer with a multi-purpose Call to Action for people and businesses to get involved and help out. Housing Humboldt can now display their partnerships big and bold for the world to see.
In addition to the property overview page, each property now has its own feature profile were relevant content can be highlighted for a visitor.
Profiles Key Content:
Location by city
Room for descriptive text
Room for additional photos
Property location map