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Preparing for a Website Redesign


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Is your website from 1995? Do you get frequent comments that your site is old, unattractive, difficult to use, or out of date? Are you frustrated because you don’t know how to update your website and you have to call your tech volunteer or contractor every time you want any changes? Do you want a website that is "dynamic"?

In this webinar, Tierney Smith, Community Manager at TechSoup Canada, will give you the background you need to know to prepare for a successful website redesign. We will cover, at a high level:

1) What is a Content Management System (CMS) and how building your website in a CMS will allow you to update it easily in the future (without needing to call your IT person!)
2) What is the process of designing and developing a website - what are the different stages you need to go through and what to expect

Published in: Technology, Design
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Preparing for a Website Redesign

  1. 1. Preparing for a Website Redesign May 9, 2012
  2. 2. reminders You can hear us, but we can’t hear you Slides will be available on For the best webinar experience, close all other applications Turn up your computer’s volume Have questions? Type questions in the Questions Log
  3. 3. What is CanadaHelps? A public charitable foundation that provides accessible and affordable online technology to both donors and charities.For Charities A cost-effective means of raising funds online.For Donors A one-stop-shop for giving. CanadaHelps is a charity helping charities. CanadaHelps is giving made simple. MyCharityConnects is a initiative of CanadaHelps.
  5. 5. ABOUT METierney Smith  Manager of Learning & Special Projects  In the past I’ve done software & website development  Current focus is on building tech capacity in nonprofits
  6. 6. TECHSOUP CANADA We help nonprofits use technology to achieve their full potential. Register your organization today, to be eligible torequest over 300 products from 25 donor partners!
  7. 7. DONATIONS PROGRAM 300+ products from 28 corporate donorsAvailable to registered Canadian charities, nonprofits & libraries
  8. 8. Learn About TechnologyGet Products Register your organization today, to be eligible to request over 300 products from 28 donor partners!
  9. 9. AGENDA What is a CMS? Website design process Identifying your needs Choosing a consultant CMS Options
  10. 10. “Have nothing in your design thatyou do not know to be useful orbelieve to be beautiful.”- William Morris
  11. 11. WHAT IS A CMS CMS = Content Management System Which means… YOU can update content on your website
  12. 12. What does your organization do – really?
  13. 13. WEBSITE DESIGN PROCESS Design Launch & Build
  14. 14. WEBSITE DESIGN PROCESSIdentify Design & Launch & Maintain Needs Build Training & Update
  16. 16. WEBSITE DESIGN PROCESSIdentify Design & Launch & Maintain Needs Build Training & Update
  18. 18. IDENTIFY NEEDS: 4 KEY QUESTIONS1) Who will visit your website? • Potential donors, current donors, volunteers, etc.2) Why? What do they want to do? • Donate, look up your phone number, apply to be a volunteer, adopt animals, etc.
  19. 19. It’s not about you!
  20. 20. IDENTIFY NEEDS: 4 KEY QUESTIONS3) How do you make it simple? • Donating: visible “donate now” button, simple donation form • Volunteer: visible call to action, clear opportunities, simple way to contact you4) What will get people to come back? • Dynamic content – events, information • Or should you bring the info to them?
  21. 21. IDENTIFY NEEDS – THINGS TO CONSIDER Whatother systems would you like your website to integrate with? • Other websites, CRM/database, etc. Do you want a mobile version?
  24. 24. RESOURCES YOU ALREADY HAVE Staff with relevant skills  HTML, CSS, graphic design, copy writing Branding materials  Logo, print materials Current website  Analytics
  25. 25. BUDGET Money & time 60% guideline
  26. 26. PRIORITIZE What do you need the website to do now? In 6 months? In 1 year? In 2 years? What are the 2-3 main purposes of your site?
  27. 27. CHOOSE CONSULTANT(S) Key skills: designer & geek Ask for recommendations Avoid custom solutions Partner who will be around long-term
  28. 28. ROLES & RESPONSIBILITIES Whowill drive the project? You or your consultant? How often will you check in? Set expectations up front Roles in a website project:
  29. 29. TIMELINE Don’t tie your website to the release of your annual report in 3 weeks!
  30. 30. DESIGN & BUILD
  31. 31. CMS OPTIONS Commercial/proprietary Open source Custom Credit: Julian Egelstaff
  32. 32. CMS OPTIONS Commercial/proprietary Open source Custom
  33. 33. CMS OPTIONS Commercial/proprietary Open source Custom
  35. 35. WORDPRESS Easy to use Especially good for blog-like websites Not as well suited to community-oriented websites with lots of interactive features Has some modules (plugins) that add features
  36. 36. JOOMLA Pretty easy to use Designed for standard, public-facing websites Has modules (components) that add features Commercial culture mixed into an open source platform
  37. 37. DRUPAL Somewhat easy to use, but considerably harder than the other two Designed as a flexible platform for all kinds of websites Has many modules that extend the existing website and other modules
  38. 38. DESIGN WEBSITE Beautiful AND Useful Focuson your AUDIENCE: why are people coming to your site?(Don’t ask: what info do we want to share?)
  40. 40. DESIGN WEBSITE Ifit doesn’t have a pulse, it shouldn’t be on your home page  Choose images of people or animals if possible Paper prototype and user testing
  41. 41. SIMPLICITY IS KEY Make it easy to:  Understand what you do  Donate  Sign up for your newsletter  Connect on social media  Sign up for an event
  42. 42. SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO) A.k.a. be found on Google Keywords = words & phrases people type into a search engine  Keyword tool: 00&__u=1000000000&__o=kt&ideaRequestType=KEYWORD_ID EAS#search.none Learn more about SEO
  43. 43. ANALYTICS Install Google Analytics (
  45. 45. TRAINING AT LEAST 2 staff  Including staff responsible for updating content Learn by doing Ask for/create a training manual
  47. 47. MAINTENANCE, UPGRADES & PATCHES Make a plan before launching site  1 hour of developer time per month Opensource systems need regular updates & patches
  48. 48. CONTENT UPDATES Make a plan before you launch Who will update your website? How often? Whatcontent will you use & where does it come from?
  49. 49. RESOURCES Login Template Get Ready for CMS handout Toronto Net Tuesday Recap & Resources TechSoup Canada website articles & blogs
  50. 50. MORE RESOURCES CMSs Compared: vs-joomla-vs-drupal.htmlAnd Website planning tips: Julian’s blog on roles & responsibilities: Redesigning websites for nonprofits: site
  51. 51. CREDITS Thanks to… • Ana Matic ( • Julian Egelstaff ( • Chad Mohr ( Images:• Kansas Sebastien• Jennifer (interpunct)• Xerones• Randy (el neato)
  52. 52. STAY IN TOUCH E-newsletter • Sign up at Facebook • Twitter • Blog •
  53. 53. QUESTIONS?
  55. 55. www.mycharityconnects.orgfree online resources Information about technology and social media Webinars Past webinar slides Learning opportunities Events across the country
  56. 56. Upcoming Webinars• May 23 - Editorial Calendar Essentials: Organize and Plan Your Online Communications• June 27 - Elements of a Great YouTube Video
  57. 57. MyCharityConnects Conference 2012 JUNE 12 – 13 | Allstream Centre, Toronto Collaborate to build a stronger sector. Innovate to solve complex problems. Celebrate our work and the difference we’re making.Join non-profits from across Canada and socialmedia experts for the premier social media andonline fundraising learning opportunity of theyear
  58. 58. for more great resources…
  59. 59. Keep in touch!