This is the kind of feedback we always hope to hear after helping a client navigate the process of building a custom nonprofit website design.
“This project was a great investment for Mosaic. We’ll continue to see the ROI for years to come as we refine and optimize.”
Helping nonprofit organizations build great websites to help them achieve their missions is one of our favorite things to do here at Firespring. In many cases we are able to do that through the nonprofit website platform we developed specifically to meet the unique needs of nonprofits.
Occasionally though we work with a client who has special requirements and needs a more custom nonprofit website design solution from our WordPress team to achieve their goals. This past year, one such client was Mosaic.
Headquartered in Omaha, NE, Mosaic is a whole-person healthcare organization reaching across 10 states and providing support to more than 3,700 people. Their services empower people with disabilities, mental and behavioral health needs and autism, as well as aging adults to live their best lives.
We had been working with them from the printing side of Firespring for some time, but when they needed a new website they approached us with that opportunity as well.
They felt their previous platform was outdated and needed an upgrade. They wanted their new site to help them:
- Engage a national audience.
- Build their donor base and support advancement efforts.
- Serve as a hub of information and resources to local sites and partners.
- Attract, recruit and retain talent that delivers on their brand promise.
- Serve more people in more communities.
Using Personas for Your Nonprofit Website
One of the biggest challenges facing the Mosaic team was trying to build a site that was relevant to a wide variety of audiences that Mosaic needed it to serve—and at the same time provided a good user experience across the board.
So, our first step in working with the team was identifying and empathy mapping the most valuable personas to Mosaic.
Using personas and empathy maps in the website-building process helped us improve the site architecture, user experience and create specific user journeys throughout the site to achieve each of the objectives laid out by the Mosaic team.
It also aided our design and interactive teams in the functional building of the site, allowing them to pay special attention to the look, feel and overall purpose of each page.
Measure and Test Your Nonprofit Website
It was also important to the Mosaic team (and us too of course) that they would be able to track how well the new site was achieving their objectives after it was live. So, a custom analytics dashboard was built using Google Data Studio to consolidate analytics from the multiple software services they rely on into one site, as well as to measure performance of the new site versus their old one.
This is always important because a website is not a siloed part of an organization’s digital strategy, but the hub for all their marketing and communications efforts. So bringing in additional data helped Mosaic see a more complete picture of how their marketing and communications activities are working.
Additionally, effective websites should always be evolving and improving, so we provided Mosaic with a Google Optimization account so they could run tests and experiments on the site without always needing additional coding work done.
Checking In On Your Nonprofit Website
The Mosaic site went live last summer and now about seven months later we decided to check in, reflect on the experience and ask questions about how the new site has been helping them.
Can you give a brief description of Mosaic and its mission?
Mosaic is a whole-person healthcare organization reaching across 10 states and providing support to more than 3,700 people. Services empower people with disabilities, mental and behavioral health needs and autism, as well as aging adults to live their best life.
Embracing God’s call, Mosaic relentlessly pursues opportunities that empower people. We are the changing face of healthcare, passionate about serving the whole person and partnering for quality outcomes.
How did you first hear about Firespring?
We had previously partnered with Firespring on some print projects. We were drawn in by your custom nonprofit website design work with St. Baldrick’s. That was very appealing to us.
What challenges/problems necessitated a change?
We knew we were outdated on our previous platform and needed an upgrade. We were seeking a better platform for prospective employees and other key audiences. It was difficult to find information about our services on our previous site. Because we’re in a significant growth phase in the lifecycle of our organization, we needed a site that would be flexible and easily adaptable for us as we grow.
Were there trends in your industry that drove the need to build a new nonprofit website? If so, what were they?
Our industry is embracing a changing definition of healthcare, and we needed to position ourselves to reflect this evolution. We are seeing more and more contract work in our space, and our previous site did not fully accommodate this growing piece of our business. Our industry is also seeing an uptick in merger and acquisition activity. We were seeking a site that would allow us to quickly build acquisition landing pages and make changes on the fly.
What were you looking for in a partner?
We were looking for strategic collaboration and someone to take us to the next level. We wanted a partner who understands the nonprofit world and the fundraising component of our business.
What made Firespring stand out over others that you researched?
Firespring’s size and experience made you stand out over other vendors we researched. We admired your visionary leadership and personal experience with growth and acquisitions.
Can you describe the implementation/rollout process from your end?
It was a lengthy and iterative process and did feel overwhelming at times. It was helpful for us to fully utilize our project management office because Mosaic is a complex organization. Throughout the entire project, we felt we were able to closely collaborate with the Firespring team. Despite some hiccups along the way, we had a great account manager at Firespring who stepped in at all the right times.
How did our team help with implementation?
When roadblocks appeared in the project, Firespring responded quickly to overcome the challenges and shifted team members to meet our needs.
What was the initial reaction to the new website? How did your users and audience accept and utilize it?
The initial response to the website was extremely positive. Providing a good end user experience was our goal, and I think we achieved that. We did not see a drop off in site traffic post-launch.
How has the new website helped Mosaic since implementation?
Though we are still tweaking this section, the new website has already made an impact with our talent acquisition process. We’ve had more than 40,000 unique pageviews on our employee careers page since we launched the site in May 2019 and more than 430,000 unique visits to the site overall. Visually, the site has brought our brand to life and provides a great platform for us to share our mission with a wider audience. We’ve acquired two companies since launching the site and have more in the pipeline. The new structure has allowed us to set up professional, informative acquisition landing pages quickly and easily.
Has the new site saved money and/or increased productivity?
Because the new site is a more robust tool than our previous website, we have more opportunities. We’re actually focusing more time on optimizing our web presence than before.
The enhanced job search functionality has been a great resource for our HR team and has created natural opportunities for HR and Marketing to partner more regularly.
One significant cost savings is our migration away from vanity URLs for each of our agency locations. The new URL structure Firespring helped us implement still provides a feeling of local ownership for our agencies, but saves us money on domain registration.
Can you share any metrics/KPIs that show the success you have enjoyed with the new website?
We’ve gained 200 new blog subscribers and more than 100 new Mosaic Allied Voices volunteers via our website signup forms.
More than 450 people have completed contractor applications on the website.
We’ve had more than 400 people reach out directly through the website seeking services. We know anecdotally that website inquiries have led directly to service placement.
This project was a great investment for Mosaic. We’ll continue to see the ROI for years to come as we refine and optimize. The custom Google Data Studio, for example, is a great tool that we’re just tapping into.
What has your team been most impressed with?
We now have a better vehicle to share our mission and work with the world. Firespring’s partnership exceeded our expectations with their custom nonprofit website design services. We were particularly impressed with the attention to detail from several members of the Firespring team.
Is there anything else we should know?
You delivered us the product you said you would. We continue to value our relationship with your team. We’re aware that websites aren’t set and forget it projects—the journey has just begun!