UX ups the Good Cause
The power of an enhanced user-experience makes a great cause, incredible.

Giving NYHC the space to further their cause: A nonprofit case study

If there’s one thing New Yorkers know to be true, it’s that living in New York can be an uphill battle. Prices continue to climb each day as options for lower-income New Yorkers grow sparser. That’s where the New York Housing Conference (NYHC) comes in. They help lower-income New Yorkers have a chance at the New York dream with affordable housing options in the best parts of the city. Unfortunately, their website wasn’t helping their mission. With too much information to occupy their website and not enough room for it all to reside, their website was just about as overwhelming as the housing situation in New York.

Taking this project on was a no brainer for e9.

New York is the home of the e9 team, and they jumped at the chance to support this cause that helps the people of their city. The team knew that a fresh, new website would give NYHC a better way to network and articulate their cause, thereby better-helping people in need.

Out with the old, in with the new.

NYHC had recently come under new management and had a new and fresh outlook on the program. The old website was too clunky for their continuously updating content and its style wasn’t as vibrant as the new management.

Right off the bat, e9 knew that organizing the content needed to be at the top of the list of priorities. NYHC had hundreds of pages of information to categorize for the website. As a solution, e9 simplified navigation between and inside each page with a tab system that made it easy for users to find the information they needed. These tabs were developed to be highly editable so NYHC could add, remove, or update tabs as necessary. The new navigation features gave NYHC’s website a fresh, crisp look while increasing functionality for both users and the NYHC team.

Giving the client the reins back

Much of NYHC’s content is centered around social issues and policies, so it can be very dense and difficult for users to search through. The team sorted through the information and organized it with tabs by timeline and scope. This means NYHC can discuss complex issues without overwhelming the user by way of chronological timelines and policy levels. Making this information as user-friendly and digestible as possible was very important to NYHC, as community awareness and involvement are vital to their cause.

“The style e9 created for us elevates our messaging with a fresh look and more consistent branding across communication platforms.”
RACHEL FEE | Executive Director

Events System

Imperative to NYHC’s continued success is its involvement with the community. To make sure that the events they hosted, attended, and supported were highlighted on their website, e9 helped incorporate their calendar and booking system across many pages. The events page itself is the main hub of information, as well as where bookings can be made for both internal and external events. For events put on by NYHC, API integration with Eventbrite was necessary. e9 worked closely with NYHC to confirm that the content transferred to Eventbrite was correct and that the process for users is quick and smooth.

Featuring external events that are relevant to NYHC presented a unique set of challenges in that they each might have different booking agents and processes. e9 developers worked to make the connection between NYHC and the external booking sites free of kinks for visitors. On the homepage of the website, users will find a scroll of all NYHC’s upcoming events. Other pages also have various links to events that speak to their cause. It was important to sprinkle their event activity throughout the user’s experience to speak to their commitment to staying active and involved in the community.

“The policy section organizes our work in a way that better communicates what we do to potential partners and funders.”
RACHEL FEE | Executive Director

Competition Gallery

Events are important for the NYHC to help raise awareness of their cause. To build excitement leading up to those events, e9 created a contest gallery within their website. The partners of NYHC could use the submission form on the website and, once approved, have their project featured in a gallery. This allows NYHC to showcase all the activities happening in the affordable housing community of New York and give their partners a new level of exposure. NYHC can now show the broad range of their coalition through this visual representation of their partnerships.

The Takeaway

e9 was more than eager to help an organization that has such an impact in their beloved city. They hope that in the same way the old design mimicked the state of housing in New York, this new design will speak to the hope that low-income New Yorkers can have for their future in this city.

“The visual representation of our partnerships is not something we had before.” RACHEL FEE | Executive Director

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