Basestation has worked closely with the Moredun Group for more than 10 years. So, when the research group needed to update its website, the team naturally turned to us. We had already rebuilt an earlier Moredun site created in Drupal by another agency, adding a separate member portal and upgrading the platform to Drupal 7. But with this version set to reach its end of life in November 2021 (later extended by a year), a further rebuild was required. A refresh of both the website design and user journeys was also in scope, chiefly to better manage the complexity of Moredun Foundation membership.
Bringing the project to life
User experience design
User interface design
Wireframes and prototype
Custom WordPress build
Support and maintenance
Almost anyone can build a website, but it takes meticulous planning and technical expertise to create an effective web experience. To fully grasp the task at hand, we began by interviewing the Moredun Communications Team and reviewing Google Analytics data. Next, we ran a remote design sprint with the highly engaged Moredun team members. This let us map the most common user needs and define content types and an initial information architecture (IA). Discovery phase complete, we moved on to creating wireframes and then a clickable prototype, before progressing to the rebuild.
Moredun was keen to retain how the four arms of the research group had appeared previously but wanted the new website to do much more. Balancing user needs and business needs, we based the IA around four distinct areas for the Moredun Foundation, Moredun Research Institute, Moredun Scientific and Pentlands Science Park. Given the group’s focus on education, another critical task was to enable users to effortlessly access Biblio, , from the Moredun site.
Towards a digitised membership
It was crucial to streamline the membership registration flow right from the outset. Previously, most Moredun Foundation members were given their membership by another organisation. Many others were offline members, who did not initially have an online account. And some people would just buy a membership directly from the site. Users would have either a member account, an online shop account or both. A big challenge was to work out the existing member offer and how this could be improved on the new site, with membership fully digitised in the future.
Seamless and sustainable solution
With more Drupal upgrades in the pipeline, the rebuild was a chance for us to introduce a new, more sustainable solution – with cheaper running costs to boot. Requirements dictated that we rebuild in WordPress, which better meets Moredun’s needs and offers a more user-friendly content management system (CMS). Since WordPress also let us combine the member portal and website, our solution has saved Moredun on maintenance costs and Drupal upgrade costs.
As well as giving the website design a refresh, we created reusable content types and a flexible page builder to support in-house content creation. We integrated a new API to connect the new site’s journal search function to Research Scotland’s online repository. By merging the member portal and website to create a single entity, we have enabled more seamless user journeys. A logged-in state now provides access to member-only content, with the rest open to the public. We also delivered training in the new CMS to further future-proof our solution.
From discovery to launch, the Moredun website project took over a year. But the time spent up front to explore the user journeys and understand the current pain points really paid off. With a single website now catering to members and non-members alike, both the user interface and user experience are markedly improved. The journey to the online shop is clearer. And the Moredun team finds the CMS easier to use, meaning that it’s a breeze to keep users updated.
Expert input at every stage
Investing time up front ensured that the new Moredun website answers the research group’s needs and responds as users would expect.
Technical and design expertise
Basestation architects back-end software solutions that deliver enjoyable and effective front-end user journeys and experiences.
Hosting and ongoing support
Design and development mark just the start of our relationship with a client. For 90% of projects, the client also relies on us to host the web service and provide day-to-day support.
Responsive at all times
Because our clients have a good experience with Basestation, they come back to us. We’re approachable, easy to talk to and always answer the phone and emails.