There Are Many Reasons Why People Donate to a Cause. Design Helps Foster Our Natural Instincts To Do Good
I am currently working with an amazing non-profit, Barbershop Books, helping them redesign their digital experience, and providing technical support.
There have been a lot of parallels between my work as an information architect for an e-commerce company and this project; particularly, the question of how to get consumers (in this case, potential donors) to make a financial transaction.
The effort for Barbershop Books initially focused on the design of the donation page itself.
The current donation page presents a lot of information at once; this information density may detract from the overall goal of the experience. We can think of a customer arriving at this page, having become familiar with the mission of the organization, either through exploring the site, hearing about the non-profit through different media (like television or social media). They bring with their arrival here impressions of the organization, and the first goal of this page would be to make the final sale: to reinforce their notions that this is an organization worth supporting.
(By the way, Barbershop book is worth supporting! So if you believe in improving literacy and providing reading spaces for young people, donate!).
My redesign focused on refocusing this page to be about reinforcing the purpose of the organization, and focusing on how a donation will make a direct impact.
This starts with text that reminds the user the positive impact the organization provides; I also felt that connecting donation amounts to actual impact, but showing how even smaller donation amounts, while not funding an entire reading space or reading space subscription, will make an impact.
I also looked at the analytics behind the pages, and noted that the donate page has a high bounce rate; users often come to this page, then leave quickly. I wanted to include other ways to get involved; the goal of this is to engage users who are close to donating: if they subscribe to the newsletter, offer to volunteer, or follow us on social media, we will be able to follow up with them, keeping them connected to the organization. This connection may lead them to return to the donate page, reminding them why they wanted to donate in the first place.
This led to these initial designs.
I am currently reading research on how social influence impacts giving online. As I work on getting more data, I will incorporate social metrics to help guide donation amounts.
The other part of this project is about creating a service design plan; ultimately, donations and support comes from multiple methods, and service design helps map out how a user experiences the non-profit through the web site and other media.
As a next step, I am taking this service design model and seeing how the use of SalesForce integration with the site can improve the experience of both Barbershops and donors.