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An inclusive brand and UX that champions Australia's LGBTQIA+ youth with Minus18

2020

The challenge

Experiences tied to gender and sexual identity can be a turning point in the lives of LGBTQIA+ young people. Sometimes the journey is positive, but more often it is filled with challenges like navigating fractured and dispersed support pathways, a lack of sex education in school and a desire for safe spaces all combining into a complex and complicated journey.

Minus18 have been working hard to change this for over 20 years and have become a lifeline for many LGBTQIA+ youth. Coming into a new phase of growth, they were coming up against a number of constraints impacting how they delivered their services—including an outdated website, with inefficient processes and complexities in user experience.

Impact opportunity

Today worked with Minus18 to create a compelling website that provides easy access to services and reduces complexity and manual work for their small team of staff—all while conveying the contagiously positive spirit of the organisation.

Process

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Discovery

We began by running a workshop to identify the core pain points in the back-end admin workflows. This helped us develop a tech solution to optimise the online store, streamline the workshop booking process and facilitate better management of subscribers.

With the client team, we established Minus18's core audiences:— young people looking for support, guidance and community connection; and— businesses, corporate sponsors and partners who have been increasingly interested in Minus18's offering in recent years.

The website needed a strong mission message, that maintained a youthful, queer look and feel while representing the sophistication of Minus18 as an organisation and their diverse, professional service offering.

Reflection

The web store plays a core role in delivering on the Minus18 mission. The existing store experience had an unusually high abandon cart rate due in part to slow technology and a challenging user experience. The number of transactions were growing quickly, which also meant problems were escalating quickly!

By building a robust new store with smart integrations, we have been able to streamline the experience for the user and support what is a critical fundraising stream for Minus18.

Steph Little
Senior Producer at Today

By removing significant barriers in the online store we were able to decrease the abandoned cart rate; resulting in 338 orders being sent in the lead up to IDAHOBIT in 2020—just weeks after launch—and meeting last year's results despite being in the midst of a global pandemic.

By leveraging existing services and creating some of our own, we were able to compose a technical solution that has alleviated pressure from Minus18's resources and given them a solid, scalable solution as they continue to grow.

Our co-designed UX is impactful in inspiring the community to buy and donate, building the longevity of Minus18 and supporting more LGBTQIA+ youth.

Feedback from the Minus18 community

Hi Team, I just wanted to share some of the cute feedback we've received on the site so far, with users highlighting that the website is;

  • “Everything loads so fast It's incredible”
  • “It looks sleek, fresh and clean. It's sooooo pretty!!”

And this story that someone sent: “I used minus when I was a teenager many years ago to read about coming out and what being a big ol bisexual meant. When I came out to my mum, I printed off a page from the website and I left it on her desk for her to read. She came into my room and gave me a massive hug and that was that. It's so amazing to see the site growing up and all the people you're going to help”

Micah Scott, CEO Minus18

Reflection

Minus18's existing brand is eye-catching, bold and captures the diversity of LGBTQIA youth wonderfully. Their brand guidelines were developed mainly for marketing comms without specific digital consideration and served as a great starting point.

We adapted the existing brand to ensure the execution was appropriate for both the youth and corporate audiences of the website. We collaborated heavily with the Minus18 team to strike the right look and feel for the brand's first large-scale digital execution and the end result is bang-on!

Leo Beganov
Interaction Designer at Today

The load time of the website has been dramatically improved, coming down from 3 seconds to 0.5–1 second.

Outcome

The new Minus18 website stands true to their core mission and simultaneously reflects the professional standing of the organisation. With a CMS that's friendly to all users, the team can focus their energy on providing valuable services to the youth who need them most. By improving workflow, capturing the vibe and building a foundation for future growth, working with Minus18 was a highlight for the Today team.

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