institution: Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University
category: Marketing and Promotion
The process began at the 2016 MW Web Crit. Our teams used that peer review to gain momentum and kickstart the next evolution of the Nasher Museum’s website. When approaching the new project, we challenged ourselves with several questions to guide our efforts—such as:
- How can we make the site more intuitive to navigate?
- How can we increase the visibility of artists, exhibitions, and the collection?
- How can we more effectively encourage membership and donations?
- And most importantly, how can we spark curiosity and engagement? And how do we foster a desire to explore the site’s great content more deeply?
We dove into the research phase with these questions top of mind. Stakeholder interviews, departmental focus groups, technical audits, and website analytics illuminated the landscape surrounding each question. Pain points, challenges and opportunities were uncovered. As a team, the resulting findings were used as north stars for the project and can be seen through the feature set below.
- Weave a web of connected content through the use of custom content type components.
No exhibition, story, podcast or work of art exists in a vacuum. Revealing its connection to other content provides context and deeper meaning. It also allows for the “Wikipedia Effect”—where users forge a lateral path through the site, following and fostering their curiosity.
- Unlocking the true potential of a collections API by connecting eMuseum and WordPress for one seamless content experience.
Breaking down the barrier that often divides a site and its collection allows for a continuous user experience and the blending of previously separate content. By pulling in collection items and incorporating them throughout the site, reciprocal connections can bring a variety of content types new life.
- Build a easy to follow site navigation system.
Museum navigation systems too often reflect the internal staff’s understanding of their departments and programs. A user oriented navigation system helps users build a mental map of a website’s landscape.
- Increase support with contextual calls-to-action components that can be used throughout the site.
People are more likely to respond to a request if its value is communicated in the context of something they’re interested in. Building a way to store and reuse these calls-to-action makes them easy to manage and maintain.