Website Review


project BRIEF

The ACRF wanted to review its website. They wanted to know if users were finding donation and fundraising forms easily.

A pro bono project, part of General Assembly course. 


New information architecture and homepage design

My role

User research co-lead, data analysis,
project and client management, survey development.

team          duration

Myself                                  18 days
Penelope Murdoch
Michael Deshayes


  • Axure
  • Online card sorting
  • Online tree jack testing
  • Google Analytics
  • Surveymonkey


  • Interviewing
  • Survey development
  • Data analysis and visualisation
  • Information architecture
  • Usability testing
  • Affinity mapping

Research Strategy

We researched  information already available, including:

  • studies of the not-for-profit (NFP) sector
  • the usability of other not-for-profit websites
  • research the ACRF had already done

We developed a project plan and research strategy that connected all our activities.


I developed 2 surveys. They focussed on

  • relating ACRF audience to the not-for-profit sector.
  • identifying current users of the ACRF website.

We received 100 responses to the first survey and careful wording of questions and answer formats enabled us to define the ACRF audience easily. 

information architecture

While I focussed on the surveys, my colleagues created a sorting test for 50 menu items. We then validated our findings with a tree jack test. Clear results from 50 users gave us a new information architecture that had 5 top level categories.

google analytics

I sorted the top 1,000 pages into 5 categories we found in our card sorting, revealing which categories were most popular or contained most pages. We also confirmed demographics. 


  • Largest category was News
  • Most popular category was How to Help
  • Demographics matched our survey

usability testing

I spent a day testing the site with members of the public using a testing guide. In total we tested with 14 people.

This identified strengths and weakness in the website and established a benchmark usability score of 51%

key findings

  • Homepage carousel caused distraction or confusion
  • It would be difficult to navigate if upset or in a rush

co-design process

Using our new IA and findings from usability testing, we did a co-design activity to create a new layout for the ACRF homepage.

My colleague then developed a prototype in Axure.  


The team interviewed 9 people to identify motivations for supporting the ACRF. Interviewees were

  • ACRF volunteers
  • Involved in fundraising or medical research

These were critical to creating personas and user flows.

affinity mapping

By pulling our research together, we found validating patterns in our research, including similar journey maps and demographics.


Personas and User Flows

We grouped traits, behaviours and motivations that each became a persona. We gave them a scenario and user flow for using the ACRF website. The ACRF could apply these assets when implementing and expanding on our design.

final usability testing

We tested our prototype with 8 users.

  • All understood the purpose of the website.
  • All successfully completed the tasks.

Our design increased the usability score to 81%


want to hear more?

The ACRF began implementing our recommendations within a week of delivery.

This is a special project because my work improved the ACRF's potential to support cancer research. There's much more to the story too. Contact me, I'd love to share more with you.