Habitat For Humanity (St. Louis) Website Rebuild
Improving Lives Through an Improved Web Experience.
Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis believes in a world where everyone has a decent place to live. They are a nonprofit organization that builds homes, communities, and most of all, hope. They are dedicated to eliminating substandard housing locally by utilizing a comprehensive program in which hard-working local families invest their time into building and purchasing their own homes.
Having had the same website for nearly a decade, they were looking to overhaul its fractured layout, cumbersome CMS, and often confusing donation form. Habitat St. Louis reached out to us to incorporate the updated branding of the national affiliate into a new, mobile-friendly site that not only reflected their mission but brought the goals of increasing donations and volunteers up to date with the rest of the nonprofit world.
Colors & Typography
The palette and typography for this project were determined by the brand standards set forth by the national organization, but have been used differently by numerous local chapters. We chose to primarily use the blue and green, with orange being used solely as an indicator for points of interaction or steps in a process, such as making a donation.
The choice to utilize mostly lowercase headlines and subheads was a direct result of this, as the goal was to bring attention to the headlines, yet not have them feel as if they were “yelling” at the user or overpowering the underlying message that they were trying to communicate.
Habitat For Humanity Donation Form Improvements
What most people don’t realize is that, while certain projects are heavily supported by the national organization, local Habitat branches get very little of their individual operating budget from the parent group. Instead, they rely almost entirely on direct donations from the community.
One of the primary goals of this site was to design and implement a donation form that would vastly improve the user experience when making a donation. Instead of utilizing one long form, we decided to break the process up into “bite-sized” steps. By doing this we have been able to drastically increase donations.
Through 5 months, we have seen an average increase of 536% in donation pick-up requests via the website. Prior to the new site we were seeing an average of 30 donation requests each month via our site, since the new site launched we are averaging 161 requests per month.
We have also seen an increase of 37% more donors giving 48% more funds online since the new website went live. Improving the ease by which donors can make online gifts has had a tremendous impact on effectively using the website as a fundraising tool.
Pictures can often capture a story and evoke emotion in a way that no number of words can. With Habitat St. Louis being such a people-centric organization, it was easy to lose ourselves in the unique stories of each community member they impacted, whether they were a volunteer or family receiving a home. Everyone has a story and hearing those stories warmed our hearts and made us excited to weave them into every aspect of the site. Each and every image was mindfully selected from a library of images provided by the national chapter to portray stories that cross all demographic and psychographic boundaries to impact us at our emotional, human core.
Contrary to popular belief, Habitat branches do not simply GIVE away houses. There is a lengthy application process that results in candidates that are ready, willing, and able to put in a certain amount of “sweat equity” into their potential new home. It was important to Habitat St. Louis to clearly communicate this to their users in a way that would make the time and effort worth it for prospective applicants while reinforcing a connection to their overall goals.
“It was a great choice to work with Matchbox Design Group! Various sets of donations increased substantially through the improved website. Matchbox Design Group’s dedication to the project and our team were noteworthy. Their skilled team performs responsively and delivers exceptional work. Expect an enjoyable engagement with them.”
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