An effective online presence hinges on the user experience.
A broadcast, digital media, and marketing services company reaches 50 million adults on-air and 32 million across digital platforms while providing integrated marketing services to local outlets.
They had recently moved to a new CMS platform. But neither the CMS nor the site design addressed the needs of the 46 local television stations they owned. To serve their local markets, the stations needed to publish content and news to their own sites. Compounding matters, the site design was dated, user centered design was severely lacking and, as a result, customers were bouncing due to slow load times and poor experiences.
The company required a website framework for its stations that ensured consistency across all experiences while also providing the human centered design and publishing flexibility required to deliver the news to specific market audiences, while also improving video views and social sharing. To help begin their transformation, they called Celerity.
Pivoting from a two-month discovery endeavor to a 13-week human-centered design transformation
While Celerity’s scope of work began as a two-month discovery and strategy project, it quickly shifted into delivering user research, analysis, strategy, user experience, visual design, and a minimum viable product with a mobile first approach in just 13 weeks. Through seven Agile sprints, Celerity’s multi-disciplinary team worked with over 90 stakeholders to deliver an impactful design that met the personalized content needs of both website visitors and local stations.
The user experience design was informed by a user survey, site analytics, secondary research, and stakeholder feedback. This data was used to develop human-centered design—proto-personas and journeys that took users’ pain points, frustrations, motivations, and common site interactions into consideration. This information then defined the user experiences at each local station site. As an example, a “routine” user visits the site multiple times per day, looking for updates to stories they previously read. So Celerity introduced an experience that links previous stories and includes a “read” label in order to meet this proto-persona's unique needs.
Beyond that, managing stakeholder involvement, participation, and buy-in was key to the project's success. Through surveys and feedback loops, Celerity managed expectations and gained consensus from executive level groups, local affiliates, and content producers. The result was a sophisticated, clean, modern, user centered design that delighted existing users with its aesthetic while also appealing to a new, younger demographic.
Delivering a user centered design experience flexible enough to satisfy 46 affiliates
Celerity fulfilled our mission with an engaging, mobile first digital experience that uses a modular set of flexible UI components. These allow content publishers from all 46 affiliates to easily build pages to effectively adapt to news cycles and local priorities.
The on-site advertising experience was also reimagined to alleviate user frustrations and provide more opportunities for monetization, as measured by increases in total average revenue, total average sell-through and total average effective cost per thousand impressions (ePCM).
Celerity’s human centered design provided clear, intuitive navigation and improved overall user experience through customization, guided journeys and fewer interruptions. The site was beta tested in two markets to allow for feedback and enhancements before rolling out the design to all 46 local stations. Success was measured by a follow-up user survey comparing qualitative feedback and quantitative improvements in scores for rating site experience and discoverability.
Site requirements recorded via spreadsheet
Minimal content taxonomy structure
Inconsistent site design across 46 affiliate stations
Under-utilized success measures
Agile Scrum board developed for requirement prioritization
Updated taxonomy structure to make it easier for internal stakeholders to tag content
UI toolkit to allow for cohesive branding across the enterprise
Substantive analytics review performed by Celerity after stakeholders established and ranked goals