The Fostering Network – Optimising Membership Features

The Challenge

The Fostering Network came to us with a dated site that wasn’t allowing them much flexibility.  They wanted to provide more value behind their membership offer on the site, and greater personalisation of the member access zone.  They also requested a new design and build which would be better suited to showcasing their work, recruiting members and fundraising online.

The Solution

After understanding the organisation’s needs and deciding on the digital strategy, we set off to create a new website that would allow for maximum personalisation of the member zone, differential data display options based on user types (such as logged in member / non member) and would be optimised for increasing overall user engagement.  We started off by creating a new site structure, an optimised site navigation and a brand new design to complement it.  The new site was built in Drupal.

The site presents personalised data for each user, based on their preferences & previous site usage. We implemented a solution similar to Google and Amazon’s, whereby the website “learns” the user’s preferences and displays information accordingly.  Visitors to the site can assist the website in learning their preference by indicating their fields of interest, but over time the website will display increasingly relevant information based on their past activity as well.

Since one of the important points for the client was creating a site that would be more engaging to their members, we designed a user journey with this end in mind.  Similar types of content show up as “suggestions” of what to read next at the bottom of articles, relevant content is ever present on the site so that the visitor always has something to click on next, and the user journey is a seamless stream of interesting and relevant information.  This creates an endless loop of engaging and personalised content for the visitor to lose themselves in.

The Fostering Network publish a prestigious printed magazine and we were keen on giving it the attention it deserves online as well. We replaced the PDF download version with a  fully digital, glossy, customised version of the magazine, where you can even turn the pages!  The full publication is open only to members who are logged in, but visitors to the site can view  snippets and enjoy the media library version.

The Results

The new site is already showing some very positive improvements in performance, compared to the previous:

  • Purchases of membership up by 58.33%
  • Purchase completions up by 31.82%
  • Traffic to login page as first interaction up by 38%
  • Pageviews up by 2.15%
  • Unique pageviews up by 3.76%
  • Average page load time down by 44.72%
  • Pages per session ratio up by 12.49%
  • New user registrations up by 4.43%

The Fostering Network is delighted with the new look and functionality of our website. Every month thousands of people – many of whom are first time visitors – come to our site to find out more about our work transforming the lives of fostered children, and it’s vital that they have a positive user experience and can navigate their way around the site easily. That’s why the new structure of our site is so important and is proving to be so effective. – Daniel Sinclair, Comms Manager

The Fostering Network is the UK’s leading fostering charity, dedicated to creating a better future for children in foster care and for fostering families.  They bring together and support everyone who is involved in the lives of the children and young people who are fostered, including fostering families and the services that work with them.  They develop and pilot new approaches to foster care and influence fostering policy and practice at every level.

Project Highlights

  • A new user journey designed to engage

  • Personalisation of content based on preferences and previous site usage

  • Virtual glossy magazine with real pages you can flip though