Greyhound Track & Field Club

Increasing Sign Ups And Building Communities

Greyhound Track & Field Club

Redesigning Canada's Largest Track & Field Club Website

Timeline: 3 weeks

Deliverables: Domain Research, Heuristic Evaluation, User Interviews, Persona Development, User Journey Map, Information Architecture, User Testing, Wireframes, Interactive Prototype, Client Presentation
 

The Client.

The Greyhounds Track and Field Club began in Vancouver, BC in 1999 with 15 members. Now in 2017, they are nearing 90 members. With 320 Provincial Records and 118 World & National Records, currently. What makes this track and field club different is that they are masters (35+)/seniors (55+) only team.

The Opportunity.

The reason why the Greyhounds came to us, is for a website redesign because their website was from early 2000… and needed a facelift but also to help them accomplish these goals.

greyhound_old

Photo: Current Greyhounds T&F website

Goals.

  • Attract new members, so they could have more money get new equipment and better training facilities
  • Inform current members about updates of the club. This is so they can build a community and feel involved
  • Make it easier to get funding from donors and sponsors, to support the club

Research.

Our client provided us with their google analytics for the current site. To our surprise, the site got 55 000 unique views per year. Using the analytics we found that most people come to the site to check on the results of the latest track meets.

Our team had a good start on the project thanks to the data. But we needed more information so a few tools we used are: Interviewing Users, Competitive and Comparative Analysis (comparing similar sites), User Centered Design Canvas (validates our research).

 

tools

Photo: Tools used during research phase

Interviews.

We interviewed current club members and coaches of the greyhounds. Why?

  • We wanted to know what they use the current website for
  • Any feelings or keywords about the club they have
  • Also if they have any frustrations with technology, since we are working with an older user group

We asked these types of questions in 10 of our interviews and the data we got from them was put onto an affinity diagram.

affinity

Photo: Grouping information gathered from interviews

The key takeaways from the interviews were:

  • Learning what other websites our users went on, and how they feel about them
  • How they joined the Greyhounds Club
  • Understanding what values the club was built on. Which are Competition, and Community

Competitive Comparative Analysis.

C.C. analysis lets our team compare and learn from other similar sites that accomplish a similar goal. From the interviews we learned our current user's most visited websites:

  • canadianmasters.ca
  • usmasters.com
  • ontariomasters.ca
  • masterstrack.com

Masterstrack.com was the most popular website that all 10 of interviewees have visited. When I saw the site for myself, I was thinking I had the wrong URL. A website that looked like this and had thousands of visitors a week, shocked me. But I had to put my thoughts aside and ask what is this site doing right?

mastertrack

Photo: Most popular website among our users

I asked the users why they visit this site and the reason was the latest news in the track community is a scroll away. They didn’t have to click anywhere. The website, not looking great did accomplish the user's goal, which is to deliver the news.

What our team learned from this is don’t create something that would be a brand new layout to the user. Keep it simple, our users don’t enjoy using technology, and see it as a challenge.

User Centered Design Canvas.

The design canvas validated our team's research, understand the mindset of our users, and where they are coming from.

designcanvas

Photo: A user centered design canvas to help the team understand the users and the greyhounds t&f club

Takeaways from the design canvas:

  • A motivation people had for joining the Greyhounds, was getting awards or achieving personal fitness goals. 
  • The unique value proposition is whether you are a world record holder or new to the club the coaches treat you equally.

After doing the design canvas and understanding what problems, fears our users would have. My team decided it was time start planning on how to help our users.

Planning.

In the planning stage, our team would create fictional users that would be using the Greyhounds website. This would allow us to empathize with them to see how they would want to use the website.

The first fictional user we created was Harry Hurdle, who was interested in joining the club. This also aligns with the business goal of the project, “attracting new members”. The storyboard represents the thought process and path that Harry would take into joining the Greyhounds club.

storyboard

Photo: Storyboard of a user signing up with the team up until he reaches his goal

Design & Testing.

Before we started putting pencil to paper we defined our user.

  • We know our users are older and are not very comfortable with technology.
  • The new users are people who come to the site have goals either to meet like minded people or rekindle their competitive spirit.
  • The current users come to check on the most recent updates for the club.

Also with the design, we wanted to communicate that the Greyhounds are competitive but are also a community driven team, which was the insight we got from the interviews.

homepage

Photo: A breakdown of the homepage of the site

An issue that came up was the copy we used for the nav bar. 7/10 people had trouble finding a meet to sign up for, and also how they could sponsor/donate to the club.

Testing Changes.

  • “Schedule” changed to “Events”: Users were unable, not able to find out where the upcoming meets would be.
  • Added “Sponsor” to the nav: As a business goal for the client, this needed to be easier to access.
  • Moved “Training Tips” and “Contact Us”: Looking at the google analytics these pages were not often visited, and they were moved to the footer.
nav_changes

Photo: Left old navigation before testing | Left new navigation after testing

Reflection.

After this project was done and delivered there are a few takeaways for myself

  • The copy has a huge impact on the design during the testing phase. So now I put more effort into what I write, as well as the interface.
  • I learned how to design for seniors, who see technology as a challenge more than a benefit (confirm the stereotype. They just want the bare minimum to satisfy their goal, and leave the website. To do this I increased text and button sizes so they would not struggle to navigate through the website.
greyhound_mock2

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