The Centre for Middle Eastern Plants (CMEP) is part of the prestigious Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh (RBGE). A world leading authority on the Middle Eastern environment, they work with local partners to develop sustainable and pragmatic projects.
CMEP had a page on the RBGE website but wanted to have a dedicated website that showcased their commercial services, skills and experience.
We were excited to be invited to tender for the project. The challenge was to create a great user experience for an international audience that would have vastly different hardware and connection speeds.
The list of requirements and design concepts in the brief was vast. This meant that our first step was to drill into what they needed most through a workshop.
The first task was to identify their measurements of success and business goals. This allowed us to set clear objectives and then drill into their needs and weight them in order of importance. At the end of the session we had a clear strategy as to the functionality that was to be implemented immediately and what should be introduced in the future.
It was a successful day and it was great to get to know the CMEP team and learn more about their extensive business offering.
Using the workshop outputs we defined their measurements for success. This allowed us to define what would add the most value within their time and budgetary constraints.
We conducted a content audit to discover what content they currently had and what they would need time to deliver. This allowed us to provide bespoke content production guidelines and ensure the website would support their future publishing needs.
With the project fully scoped we used mockups to help visualise the way the website would work.
Working with the CMEP team to tweak the mockups we defined the Information Architecture (IA) and user flow. The IA was designed to distinguish the organisation’s scientific and commercial services as well as assert CMEP’s unique identity. Using these deliverables we developed 3 concepts for the design of the new website.
The CMEP team confirmed they preferred set number 1 which was tweaked to create a fabulous front end design.
We decided to develop the website using WordPress as the CMEP team had limited experience and confidence with administrating websites. The easy to use back-end functionality empowered them to edit content and upload their fabulous assets.
To ensure the website was accessible to users with limited bandwidth we built a text-only version too.
Once the build was complete we undertook usability testing in different global locations. The test results were positive for all the participants irrespective of their geographic location or local infrastructure.
The final result is a fantastic website that has made everyone involved proud. The initial feedback has been overwhelmingly positive and this is just the start.
We are working with the CMEP team in an on-going capacity and look forward to some exciting new projects. For more information about this project please read our case study.