The Design Problem
Spark is a philanthropic network of young professionals who invest to improve the lives of women around the globe. They crowdsource grants, pro bono professional services and connections for investment in grassroots women’s organizations, working locally and globally, educating and training the next generation of philanthropists
When I started working with Spark's Board to redesign the site, they were not only looking to update the look and feel but to make it easier for users to find the information they were looking for and to position themselves better on their site. The old version of the site was disorganized and made it very hard to find the information on events, donating, and all the other good Spark did.
Where to Begin
Wrapping my head around the content in a redesign is always first priority to me. For Spark, highlighting their impact and getting donations is key for them. I started with a quick sketch of the existing sitemap, which I think of as a "quick and dirty content audit". This allows me to quickly get my head wrapped around the content of a site. Then based on business needs I started sketching some ideas for the layout, which you can see below. For this client, I shared the sketches with them along with notes in a PDF format of what I was thinking and why I placed the content where I did.
After some initial sketching and consultation with the client, I laid out some designs in wireframes. We went through several iterations, talking about where to place donations and how to highlight special projects for the nonprofit.
We focused on highlighting donations and ensuring that we highlighted what donations to the organization did. This helped increase donations to the organization.