Case Studies: Designing Websites for Multiple Audiences
Amazon, Charity Water Organization, and Vanguard University are examples of organizations that have set up their websites successfully to target multiple audiences.
CASE STUDY 1: AMAZON
Description of how the website is targeting multiple audiences
a) Allowing Professionals Such as Doctors to Connect with Patients
- Through the Pillpack service, Amazon coordinates with the patient's doctor and insurance to gather their prescription. The patient needs to have a list of their medications, doctor information, insurance information and payment method set up.
- By engaging professionals and pharmacists, the service ensures that every month patients get pharmacy support and automatic refills.
b) Website Prioritizing the Customers
- The site is targeting multiple audience by prioritizing the customers. The site has different segments partitioned for each product category such as Sports & Outdoor, Computer & Accessories, Kitchen, Beauty, and Personal Care.
- The website also provides a link for the Amazon Web Services, which targets specifically those interested in AWS.
c) Focusing On The Primary Audience
- With the priority list, Amazon focuses mostly on the buyers, focusing the main page design on them.
- There is a main heading on the homepage that addresses the customers and tells them what they want to know. For instance, the main page of Amazon reads, "Welcome to Amazon. We ship over 45 million products around the world."
- The statement at the home page is specifically outlining the essence of the site and offers a main call-to-action.
d) Having Secondary Services/Options in Familiar Locations
- Scrolling all the way down, Amazon has provided links for all the services they offer through the website's footer.
How the Microsites (targeted pages) are Designed
- Looking from an aesthetic point of view, Amazon’s web store is neither simple nor beautiful, two things that are expected of a good design. The focus is on the simplicity of experience, process, and functionality.
- Amazon’s design is more cluttered and busy. The top menu bar and rotating slideshow on its homepage are standard but there’s also a second set of navigation options in the top right for logging in and viewing past orders.
- Scrolling down, there are a number of subsections featuring product descriptions or noteworthy occasions.
- The website also has personalized recommendations.
- The design is such that it uses a simple one column structure as a list view for the interface.
- The design has been kept simple by introducing high level functions and options that are important such as search, cart, wish list, and streamlined menus.
- Information for the product is minimal but, if the user is interested, the website provides a next layout with more details.
- The design graphics, colors, and overall aesthetics are clean and minimal, which help performance and keep maintenance costs lower.
Why the site was selected as an example of best in class
- Amazon is undoubtedly the most significant force in the digital transformation of commerce, with an estimated 44% of all online sales being made by them. Moreover, more than one in three U.S. adults have Amazon Prime.
- Amazon targets multiple customer groups, including general consumers, industry professionals, and vendors such as Pillpack, Comixology, Home Services, and Box Office Mojo.
CASE STUDY 2: CHARITY WATER
Description of how the website is targeting multiple audiences
- The nonprofit Charity Water gives visitors the option to identify with the action they want to take.
- A customer can donate, get involved, or even volunteer in their areas of expertise. The organizations mainly targets consumers/beneficiaries of the programs and industry professionals.
- The Charity Water website has been designed to walk visitors through the campaign process of the company.
- Scrolling down the page, the website also introduces customers to the idea of becoming a sponsor or a donor.
- The emphasis has been placed on starting a campaign, with the first ⅔ of the home page devoted to the benefits of doing that.
- Sponsoring a project and donating have been moved further down the page either because fewer visitors are interested in taking those actions or the charity prefers to get more people on the campaign bandwagon.
- As a non-profit, the health of Charity Water is dependent on fostering relationships with donors, bringing in volunteers, and engaging with those in need, aspects that have been clearly brought out in the page's design.
- The design of the website has made it simple for customers to locate the information they need to make a decision, which is critical when it comes to decision-making.
- The site mainly targets students doing their undergraduate, graduate and professional programs.
- The site is also targeting donors. Engaging donors was a main goal of the school's advancement program, which was perfectly emphasized by their new Giving section that features a colorful, photo-rich site section.
- There is also a section devoted for their alumni. The site acknowledges that alumni are pivotal to the Vanguard community.
- In fact, alumni are also a primary target audience, as the website provides information on upcoming events, attractive photo slideshows, and ways that alumni can get involved in the university events.
- The site has sections that cater to the different audiences, which offers a higher chance of conversion.
- When users arrive at the homepage, they are directed to click on one of three site sections, which lead to internal pages that feel more like a site-within-a-site, featuring relevant information and value propositions for each area.
- There are colorful calls-to-action that push users to give back to the university at the bottom of each page, featuring several "Stories of Giving" that connect the school's centrally-placed strategic priorities with the students.
- The website also offers campus tour segments. Visitors are taken on a VR-style walk around the campus, with 360 degree views of campus buildings, dorms, and outdoor spaces. Along the way, the university provides colorful calls-to-action to "Register Now," "Schedule a Visit," or "Apply Online" in order to incite a reaction from their audience.
- The design also includes organized portals for the school community.
- The site design is clear, consistent, and very informative.
- The site architecture is designed to reflect the school's unique personality and mission while targeting multiple audience at the same time.
- The design entailed proper planning by incorporating a lot of reusable assets that Vanguard to maintain consistency while simultaneously highlighting each path a student could take.