Science Summer Camp Mini-Site

The Museum of Life and Science

What was the problem?

In 2018, the Museum of Life and Science didn’t have the capabilities to sell camps and classes with their current POS software. They utilized an outside service. The Museum also used a proprietary CMS that restricts access to certain functions behind a paywall. 2017’s Summer Camp website was bloated, text heavy, and frequently lost customers before a conversion could be made. To add on to the Education team’s frustrations: the proprietary CMS and outside camp selling software don’t play nice together — tracking a sale from tip to tail and determining conversion points was almost impossible for the 2017 camp year!

What was the solution?

I needed to move the summer camp webpage to it’s own subdomain, and use a different CMS. It’s possible to track Google Analytics through subdomains, so I made sure that our metrics would be trackable with no down time.

2017’s site was text heavy and bloated. How could we cut through that and show people what they actually wanted to see? Utilizing WordPress, plug-ins, and hand-coded edits, I found a grid system that took end-users to a custom post type that would explain each camp in detail. On the homepage, that grid system would showcase a tile with an interesting image, the camp name, and the grades it was best suited for.

Working with R+M (the Museum’s brand experience agency) and Centro (the Museum’s ad buying agency), I created custom HTML classes that would allow the ad agency to better track registrations clicks, which were used as conversion points. With the help of their brand agency, I implemented SEO optimizations with customized meta descriptions and titles, to make the most out of the search engine ads the Museum placed.

What role did I play?

I met with account stakeholders (the Education team) to determine their needs for the upcoming year. I also facilitated activities with them to help better understand what worked, what didn’t work, and what they wanted to see different. Those activities included finding design references and thinking about end-user roles.

After the initial discovery phase, I researched what our options were, and which would fit the organization. I presented these options to the Education team along with initial timelines, price considerations, and the pros and cons of going with each suggestion. I made sure to show what their current CMS could do, versus what other CMS could do.

After the decision was reached I worked with outside agencies to create the subdomain and get their new mini-site hosted. I also created working prototypes that I took to R+M for further development. With the help of their designers, we created a layout and template for three pages (home page, detailed down page, camp entry page) that could be scaled to fit as much information as the Education team would need.

I was responsible for implementation, creation, and entry of all information, and taking the steps needed to ensure the Museum’s Google Analytics would match with their current website. The site launched on schedule, on budget, and has seen massive improvements over the 2017 camp year!

What was the outcome?

The Museum’s website was a big hit! As of the 2018 Summer Camp meeting, our metrics looked like this:

  • Time spent on their website was almost doubled
  • Organic search was up
  • 2,000 registration clicks
  • Unique traffic that led to a lead 52% of the time → From that lead a sale occurs 70% of the time.
  • The total conversion rate is 38%

The website, with minor updates, is still in use for the 2019 camp year.

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