Last September, in service to our San Francisco and Marin fellowship, the Web Site Sub-Committee set about redesigning the AASF.org website to better meet our fellowship’s needs, the first full redesign in 15 years. We acknowledged that the current website looked a bit outdated, and wanted to determine how we could make the most useful and impactful improvements. Plus, we’re located in the heart of tech and had a few team members who worked on web sites in their day jobs and bring their expertise to A.A.
We set on a course following a methodology called “user-centered design,” which is a popular website design method in the tech industry. This meant that we put our users – the fellowship – at the center of all our of decisions about the web site redesign. To get started, we did a bit of research including a survey to the fellowship and diving into our anonymous website visitor data.
Based on what we saw in the research, we determined that our new website should have these goals:
- Help the newcomer → make a call, find a meeting, understand AA
- Serve the fellow → find a meeting, see all upcoming news and events to stay involved, and understand sponsorship and find a commitment, and order literature
- Support the trusted servant
Because so many of our visitors come by mobile device, we needed to make sure the site was mobile friendly, too!
We started the redesign process by doing a few things:
- Reorganizing the site so the categories and links made more sense to our visitors and met the goals of the new site.
- Finding a new “look and feel.” We had a lot ot choose from and found one that was simple, mobile-friendly, and one that we could share across with intergroups. Josh R from San Jose was critical in helping with this choice.
- Reviewing and revising all the old copy and information on the old site. We looked at every single page and our copywriting superstar Chris S took the lead on this critical step.
- Reviewing as a group and making sure all members of the subcommittee felt comfortable with the changes and the new site met the goals
When we got to a point where the new site was ready to test, we reached out to the Intergroup Tech Committee, recruited fellows from our meetings, and sent out a few notices in The Buzz to recruit beta test participants. A few very dedicated Central Office volunteers also went through the paces. Ben W lead the testing charge and we gathered over over 40 testing responses. The results were incredibly helpful and we learned that over 70% found the site was an improvement over the existing one and 82% agreed that the new site is easy to use.
We didn’t rest on these high scores; we dove deep into the comments and reviewed and addressed every one. Then, we did a final test by sending out a preview of the new site in the Buzz and gathered more feedback. Finally, we felt confident that our new site was ready to go!
On June 10, 2017, in honor of Founders’ Day, we launched the site. It’s a living site and meant to continue to serve our fellowship.
If you have any comments, please fill out the feedback form and the committee will review all comments ongoing to make improvements. Thank you for letting us be of service
The Website Sub-Committee
and special thanks to Maury and Nikki in the Central Office