Non-profit Website Redesign | Request for Proposals

at Huguenot Society of South Carolina (view profile)
Location 138 LOGAN ST, CHARLESTON, SC
Date Posted December 21, 2020
Category Non-Profit
Job Type Full-time
Temporary/Term-Limited
Apply Here Submit proposals to Chris Barrett | chris@huguenotsociety.org
Minimum Compensation in Local Currency Not to exceed $15,000
Maximum Compensation in Local Currency Rate to be determined by proposal
Hourly or Salary? Salary
Pay Grade Rate to be determined by proposal

Description

ORGANIZATIONAL GOALS FOR PROJECT

 

  1. Increase general awareness about the Society

The Society has traditionally been known as a genealogical membership organization.  The original Huguenots’ experiences of immigration and religious intolerance are meaningful today beyond the membership base.

  1. Increase visitation

All strategies and tactics must focus on increasing engagement both online and onsite with a specific desire to drive onsite visitation, membership acquisition, publication and other purchases and repeat engagement.

  1. Improve visitor experience

Ensure that the visitor experience is simple, seamless and engaging across all channels — from exploring the archives and publications online to making donations online. The Society’s mission is to be approachable, welcoming, authentic and inspiring, shaped by the 2020 Strategic Message Framework

  1. Enhance the Society’s role in the community

As the only institution of its kind in South Carolina, the Society wants to engage the community based on its unique position by becoming a leading community heritage resource and hub of activity, information and eventually education. This goal relates to both public and professional communities.

  1. Foster meaningful connections with collections, online exhibitions, archival information and publications

Make the collection accessible to both members and a broader audience by allowing people to interact with archival materials, rather than just "view" them. Continue the shift towards meaningful storytelling and developing learning opportunities that engage the community both online and onsite/at events.

  1. Clarify and integrate compelling key messages, iconic images and style to convey the Society’s brand

Such as “trace their footsteps, follow your own trail”.

 

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The goal of this project is to design and build a website that prioritizes user-experience and revitalizes the Society’s digital infrastructure to ensure sustainability and adaptability in online spaces. It can leverage the investments in and functionality of the current website.  The website must support all of the Society’s communications and marketing efforts and be a destination that links all audience touchpoints.

 

Project Priorities:

  • Building website infrastructure that includes a content management system that is accessible and adaptable. It must allow for (non-programmer) internal staff to be able to make content edits and updates across all areas of the website, including formatting, use of images and managing any automated functionality.
  • Ensuring Society’s website is responsive.
  • A cloud-based website hosting solution.
  • Search Engine Optimization—develop an SEO strategy to optimize earned search results that connects with paid search strategies.
  • Ensuring measurement and analytics are integrated into all aspects of the website to support ongoing reporting and evaluation, and ensure we can act on insights and recommendations that come from the data.
  • Plan for an eventual CMS solution for clearly organizing and updating events and programs with a user-friendly calendar interface.
  • Navigation and functionality that prioritizes user-experience and positions the Society’s website as a storytelling, and eventual educational platform that includes content-directed and user-directed instruction on Huguenot history.
  • Creating website infrastructure that supports and allows access to and user-directed use of imagery, video and other media files.
  • Embed or link to digital repository that will be developed simultaneously as part of Low Country Digital Library, online access to digital database that contains Society publications (EBSCOhost), and sundry digital archive files created as part of Society’s 2021 Digitization Project, soon to begin. (We want this content to be accessible without directing the visitor away from huguenotsociety.org.)
  • Interactivity/accessibility that meets industry best-practice standard for accommodating the needs of all potential visitors including the visually impaired. Identifying opportunities and establishing goals for future initiatives that incorporate accessible design.
  • Facilitate and document a website strategy that a) prioritizes primary audience user flows, b) documents a conceptual site map, and c) maps out an online content strategy that is consistent with the digital strategy and tactics.

 

CURRENT IT SYSTEMS AND PUBLIC FACING DIGITAL MEDIA:

 

  • The Society’s current digital presence consists of huguenotsociety.org and a facebook page
  • The Society’s existing website design is five years old. The CMS (Managed WordPress) is obsolete and maintenance is the responsibility of staff.
  • The Society uses ResourceMate as its internal collections database. ResourceMate is present on the website via convoluted navigation.
  • The online store currently uses a dated Paypal plug-in
  • Online donations are currently managed through Paypal.
  • Constituent information is managed offline using MS Access.

 

 

STATEMENT OF WORK

 

PROJECT DEFINITION AND SCOPE PHASE

Goal: Understand the Society’s Organizational Goals, Messaging Framework, Digital Strategy & Audience Needs and Defining Project Scope

  • The Contractor will familiarize itself with the Society and its operations, current branded messaging, and audience visitation. This will include analysis and integration of existing audience research, analytics data and website strategy documentation and resources. The Contractor will undertake any further research necessary to identify key outcomes related to the website strategy and develop measurable goals that can be achieved within the project budget.

Deliverables:

  • Project Scope Plan that outlines specific activities and deliverables, timelines, expectations and accountabilities for the duration of the website development project.

 

WIREFRAMES AND SITE ARCHITECTURE PHASE

Goal: Create a sitemap that defines key pages, page relationships, content priorities and overall site navigation

  • The Contractor will consider and refine the Society’s existing conceptual site map, primary audience user-flows and content strategy, employing a U/X centered approach to prioritize website content and hierarchy.

Deliverables:

  • Wireframes that provide a blueprint for the visual design phase and ultimately page templates

 

VISUAL DESIGN PHASE

Goal: Interpret and express the Society’s brand characteristics in the design

  • The Contractor will integrate the Society’s new brand (visually and conceptually) into the visual style of the website and ensure the design and user interface of the website is connected to all other forms of institutional communications. Facilitated storyboarding design sessions with the Society’s representative members, eligible members and the public will solidify universal stories and images.
  • Conspicuous navigation and access to ResourceMate collection catalog.

Deliverables:

  • A visually compelling design that advances the Society’s brand and supports primary messages

 

SITE DEVELOPMENT PHASE

Goal: Build the Society’s website with a user-friendly CMS that can easily be managed by Society’s internal team with no technical expertise required. Modern Managed WordPress that can be kept current is desired.

  • The Contractor will develop an innovative, nimble and adaptable website that is populated by all content identified in the site map and content strategy.  The Society’s internal team will be able to continue to add to and enhance the site with strategic content and great digital experiences.
  • The Contractor will create two persuasive educational/interpretative modules—one photograph or image-based, one video-based—which will serve as templates for the Society to create or commission future modules.

Deliverables:

  • A sustainable, adaptable website that positions the Society’s online presence to be best-in-class. Currently (December, 2020) Paypal appears to be the most cost-effective merchant service provider for merchandise sales and donations. That may change while this project is underway.

 

SITE TESTING PHASE

Goal: Test site functionality and identify issues before publicly launching the site.

  • The Contractor will conduct the necessary technical testing on multiple browsers and devices to see if and where issues may occur. Stakeholder and user testing will be integrated into this process.

Deliverables:

  • A website that works and a clear plan to address any issues that arise from the testing process

 

SITE LAUNCH PHASE

Goal: Launch the new .org website internally and externally

  • The Contractor will ensure that the new website meets established SEO requirements and supports the Society’s outreach efforts by creating an internal and external website launch communications plan.

Deliverables:

  • A successful website launch by April 30, 2021 (or within 90 days of acceptance of proposal) and an agreed upon time frame for continuing transitional support or response to any issues identified upon the launch (e.g. 30 -60 days)

 

SITE MAINTENANCE PHASE

Goal: Address any post-launch technical issues that arise in an agreed-upon time frame (e.g. 30-60 days)

  • The Contractor will ensure that the Society’s internal team is equipped to manage the ongoing care and maintenance of the website’s functionality and content.

Deliverables:

  • A Site Maintenance plan (including documentation and tutorials) that can continue to move the Society forward and be responsive to online and in-person visitor experiences.
  • Cost of all work proposed shall not exceed $15,000.