January 8, 2014
The Arc Greater Twin Cities is a local non-profit that is very dear to me. The organization supports individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families through advocacy, community outreach, education and more. I’ve been a proud volunteer with The Arc for more than five years, serving on both gala and marketing committees.
The Arc supplements donations and government funding with proceeds from a chain of thrift stores called Arc’s Value Village Thrift Stores. The Arc owns and operates four store locations in the Twin Cities and, if you’re a thrifter, you know that Arc’s Value Village Thrift Stores are some of the best thrift stores around.
Arc’s Value Village business continues to grow every year, and the organization came to Fast Horse last year with something they had been putting on the back burner: their website. The Arc’s Value Village website hadn’t been redesigned in 10 years, and they knew it was holding their business back. It was copy heavy, hard to navigate on mobile and nearly impossible to update without the help of a developer.
While there was definite room for improvement in the overall look of the website, we started with user experience because after an audit and usability testing, we noticed that key information was buried under layers of menus and just too difficult to find. Our findings helped us organize the structure for the website and ultimately lead to separating out Donate and Shopping messages — since there were two distinct groups visiting the website for information.
The design of the website was a unique challenge. The client wanted something that reflected the direction the company was headed in, felt modern and fresh, and highlighted seasonal and daily sales and promotions without feeling busy. Our design team wowed with a contemporary design that gave users a clear sense of the store through large hero images, but still kept things simple and clean by evening out the hero images with plenty of white space.
Lastly, our copywriters worked with The Arc’s team to rewrite the entire website, getting rid of unneeded fluff and helping important information and key messages rise to the top.
We’re delighted with how the new website turned out and, more importantly, The Arc’s Value Village team is thrilled. Check out the site at www.arcsvaluevillage.org.