February 21, 2020
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Manchester City Council, working with the Lord Mayor’s Charity approached Cornerstone with a brief of designing and developing a new website for their main domain name www.welovemcrcharity.org.
We Love MCR Charity’s aim is to support and inspire Mancunians to make the city a fairer, safer, cleaner, friendlier place. They support young Mancunians by funding work experience to top Manchester employees and help strengthen communities and families through grants and programmes such as the therapeutic family courses they hold in Windermere.
We were asked to create a new bespoke website which would be better targeted towards the charity’s stakeholders, users and the media to help increase visibility whilst creating a much improved user experience and perception of the organisation.
The main problem with the previous site was lack of flexibility. So we ensured the new site was user-focused and developed on the more flexible and user friendly WordPress platform.
Key functionalities we needed to incorporate included newsletter subscriptions (GDPR compliant), social media integrations, internal staff portal, an online donation link and a grant application page.
We proposed that the project was kicked off with a UX discovery workshop to gather insights about who will be using the website and what they will be using it for. We mapped out personas of each user which captures their goals and information requirements in detail. We then drew up site maps, wireframes and content plans before Nic, our designer took the reins on the visual element of the site.
Nic our Graphic Designer, commented “When I was briefed on the design of the Lord Mayors website, I couldn’t wait to get stuck in. It’s very rewarding to work on, and be a part of a project that has such a positive, community based impact on my home city. In terms of the design I wanted to keep it clean, fresh and as simple as possible to allow the imagery and impressive stats and information do the talking. I achieved this through keeping the colour pallet to a minimum and through the use of a simple, clean yet strong font family. It’s great to see my colleague Mark work his code magic and bring my design to life and I look forward to seeing the results and interest it will bring to the initiative.”
The site was then developed on a highly bespoke WordPress platform which was coded to current web standards, in line with Google best practices and with usability and journeys in mind.
Our We Love MCR Charity is mobile-optimised and utilises Google API integrations and social media integrations. We also integrated HTML5 and CSS techniques that make for a polished user experience, ensuring increased online traffic and better customer journeys. We reduced admin time for the team at MCC through the internal communications portal; MCC staff are now able to access literature and update events and news to be published to the site.
The site was built in-line with the latest legislation, W3C guidelines and Google best practices, ensuring compliance, accessibility and search engine friendly code and structures. The new website was launched on our dedicated web server, which is built for speed and high traffic volumes.
Lisa, the SHB Development Manager at We love MCR Charity, said “Cornerstone supported us intensively from design to completion. We now have a web site that we can be really proud of. The level of service we received was fantastic with friendly, knowledgeable and readily available staff. Thanks!”