Case study

New website for STEM workshop provider

We built the original Hands On Science website over seven years ago. As Hands On Science's business has evolved into offering a larger range of workshops for the classroom covering a wider age range and more diverse topics to support the curriculum it was decided to complete a new scope to define what the new redesigned and rebuilt website would need to achieve.

We undertook a complete review of their existing catalogue of workshop information and discussed different options for filtering these with the client. This then defined the custom search parameters we would need to build to enable a school to quickly find the relevant workshops for their curriculum needs.

We then wireframed the entire site to ensure the client could see the enquiry process from initial search to results through to the individual workshop as well as see the supporting pages on the site which cover other initiatives including Partnerships which was also a new addition to the new site.

One of the main challenges when allowing a user to search for workshops with multiple options is returning no results! Search functionality which return zero results leads to user frustration and is not good usability. So we built a custom search tool that uses logic to interrogate the catalogue and only display options where workshops exist. This combined with an intelligent scoring system, ranking workshops by their closeness to the search criteria means that users find what they are looking for quickly and hassle free.

The user can also choose to ‘shortlist’ workshops either from the results page or from the workshop page. While they are browsing the website they may be deciding between a large range of workshops, shortlisting them adds them into a pullout sidebar and from here they can make a combined enquiry or share it with a colleague for review.

We are also now integrating the site with Hands On Science’s CRM system, Infusionsoft,  allowing tracking of enquiries and auto response from specific triggers.

This new site is of course a fully responsive website. So all of the layouts and styling were designed with mobile, tablet and desktop experience in mind. With approximately 25% of the current traffic coming from mobile and tablet moving to a responsive design was essential, this has also helped contribute to an increase in the average session duration of users on the site and an improved bounce rate.

This project is a great example of how a website can be so much more than a brochure online. It’s a business tool that allows Hands On Science to track enquiries straight into their CRM system, allows them complete control in terms of adding, editing workshops using an easy to use CMS system, as well as adding further testimonials and more.

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