Sunday, October 3, 2010

Moving forward with the new KDA website

Several of us at the KDA are busy working on the redesign of the website.  Our current website is fine, but its technology is ten years old and we cannot add capabilities because of some proprietary coding.  We have been brainstorming for several months and feel we have a good idea of what it will look like.  We are currently transferring the articles (pages) to the new site and within a few months should be developing the look and feel (style and structure).
website site_lifecycle

The concept of the landing page (Home) will be focused on “telling our story.”  We hope to have a slide show on the “Home” page that will be updated regularly with new messages, research updates, campaigns, human interest stories, etc.

We are thinking that the navigation structure will correspond to the KDA’s mission statement.
  1. Financially support and promote medical research to find a cure for Kennedy's Disease
  2. Share information about Kennedy's Disease for those who seek it
  3. Create a support system for those living with Kennedy's Disease
  4. Improve awareness of Kennedy's Disease in the medical community
  5. Increase public awareness about Kennedy's Disease and its effects on families

The “Home” page Menu will probably be:
  • About Kennedy’s Disease
  • Promote Research
  • Share Information
  • Provide Support
  • Increase Awareness
  • About the KDA

We believe we have identified our primary and secondary audiences:
  • Seekers – Those concerned that they or a loved one has Kennedy’s Disease
  • Those needing information and support – Families and friends living with Kennedy’s Disease
  • Researchers – Doctors and scientists focused on Kennedy’s Disease research
  • Supporters – Those interesting in helping the KDA achieve its goals

What also tried to determine what value we bring to each audience:
  • Seekers - Provide information such as a list of symptoms, potential for misdiagnosis, testing available and DNA labs, doctors familiar with the disease, and genetics and counseling information
  • Those needing support - Provide information guides, access to forums, chats, and personal contacts, awareness issues (e.g., anesthesia), current research including clinical trials, other needed information on subjects of exercise, medical information, travel, surgery, anesthesia, etc.
  • Researchers – Provide information on applying for grants, a history of previous grant winners and their projects, current research
  • Supporters – Provide the KDA story, mission, organization (Board of Directors, Scientific Review Board, committees), Social networking (Facebook and Twitter), and financial support (donations, partners, where does the money go), help with starting a fund raiser, how to volunteer, brochures, etc.

Even though we are still months away from launching the new site, there is a sense of anticipation building among those of us working on the project.

Since none of us are professionals, I would appreciate any thoughts you might have regarding building a more user-friendly website.  Please leave a comment or drop me an email.  Any thoughts would be appreciated.

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