GLOBAL POLIO ERADICATION INITIATIVE
The Polio Eradication Program is a department within World Health Organisation (WHO).
I was asked to re-design their website, and their main concern was how to efficiently display the vast amount of information they had under their wing.
THE MAIN PROBLEM
There is a lot of information, aimed at different types of audiences. This makes it hard for the user to locate what they are looking for specifically, if they are not familiar with the GPEI site.
The original design was very dated, and there was almost no imagery that would go along with the text, making the navigation quite dull.
Also, there was no coherence in text hierarchy, making it hard for the user to identify Headings and Subheadings. This was due to the content being uploaded by numerous different people since the site was originally created back in the early 2000's and not having any sort of brand guidelines manual.
Another challenge that we faced was linked to the population of the site; how to make it easy for the client to upload content and not make the pages look like dull plain text.
There are three types of users:
Interested in scientific information
Interested to see how their money is invested
Non-scholars and volunteers
Who have no scientific knowledge and are interested in general information
Aside from updating the design and bring the site to the 21st century, we mainly need to make it easy for the user to find what they are looking for.
I came up with a new look and feel for the site, where the use of imagery is key.
I improved the user journey through the site with the introduction of a Navigation Dropdown Menu and the implementation of a sophisticated Search Engine.
I also came up with a Module Puzzle Design that would make it easier for the client to upload content according to their specific needs, while keeping the look and feel cohesive throughout the site.
LOOK & FEEL
I kept the same colours and typography as the client requested, and designed a much up-to-date site, taking into account the challenges we faced.
GPEI had amazing photographs that they weren't using, and I thought it was a good idea to make good use of it and make the site more engaging.
However, I didn't want to overwhelm the user with imagery, so I decided to place the photos strategically:
On the Homepage, just to give a glimpse of what the site is about.
On the header of each section, to visually identify the section where the user is.
Thumbnails in the Tools & Library and the News sections, to give the user a preview of the files / articles.
The Financing (Donors) Section needed to be attractive, therefore I decided to use parallax and lots of images.
BIG DROPDOWN MENU
We had a great amount of information to display, and due to the complexity of the subject, I decided to go for a dropdown navigation bar that would work as the Site Map. This would help the user to navigate the site at ease.
The first, second and third level navigation were visible at once, but to fully navigate through the 4th level, the user needed to click on the 3rd level item to open it.
I decided to implement an individual Search Engine in the sections where we had the most complex information: Tools & Library and News. This way, the user would be able to locate the files more easily.
One of the client's request was to have full control on the filters that they would use, so on the back end we managed to make the filters section editable. The client would be able to add as many or as little filters as they wanted.
After these sections were created, I realised that they looked too similar, so I decided to differentiate the look of the News thumbnails and the Files located in the Tools & Library section.
MODULE PUZZLE DESIGN
Because of the large amount of information we had, I decided to go for a "puzzle" page, where the client would have the option to choose the most appropriate structure for the page, depending on the content they had.
I then designed different modules that hold imagery, links, bullet points and accordion text. These modules interlocked to give structure to the page, and can have as many combinations as possible.
Although the client had freedom to structure the pages as they pleased, they still had quite a few restrictions regarding the styles used for text and imagery; meaning that all the headings would look the same, as well as subheadings and paragraphs. This allowed the site to be coherent and cohesive in terms of visual identity.
We had really good feedback from the client, they truly liked the new design. The Module Puzzle Design was a great hit because it made the site look coherent throughout, and the navigation system we implemented improved the user journey a lot.