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Greater Boston Food Bank

Each year, the Greater Boston Food Bank distributes over 40 million pounds of food to pantries and shelters in Eastern Massachusetts, in communities rich and poor. GBFB wanted their new website to drive home the scope and nature of the problem of hunger, increase total giving, attract new donors and make it easier for folks who need food to find it.

We set the stage by conducting extensive interviews with internal stakeholders from marketing, development and donor relations. We collaborated with current and prospective and worked to answer some key questions: What motivates you to donate? What’s the best way to quantify need? How much is too much to ask? How much is too little? Should we prioritize first-time or existing donors? With the answers to these questions in mind, we created and prioritized our use cases, established our goals and moved forward.


A Site That’s Clear & Speaks To The Heart

After some iteration, we landed on a very simple layout and graphically strong master nav that speaks to those who want to make a difference as well as those in need. We placed eye-opening facts and infographics in key locations around the site. They keep the main mission top-of-mind, and educate visitors even if they never dig deeper to learn more about the problem.

A Persistent Call To Donate

Two key takeaways from the discovery process were that people respond most when dollars are translated into meals, and that the site should target the first-time individual donor, with secondary paths for other donors and volunteers. So we gave the call-to-donate prime real-estate, and built in the ability to test different donation amounts and CTAs.

Tools For Folks In Need

A simple, interactive map and recipe generator are always a click away. And for every visitor to the site, they serve as compelling reminders of GBFB’s mission.


Give A Doodle!

It’s a simple idea: A web-app through which you’re prompted to sketch a food. When you submit your sketch, you trigger the donation of a meal from one of GBFB’s corporate donor partners. And of course you have the option to share your creation on your Facebook page or make a donation yourself. All it takes is a few seconds to get exposed to the problem of hunger and make a difference.


Researched, Designed & Built In 90 Days

For GBFB.org, we created a progressive, HTML5 web site and integrated it with a Perch CMS to allow content editors at GBFB to easily update the site and keep it current. We integrated a customized Google Maps interface and provided code templates to third parties so we could “skin” their sections of the site and allow for a cohesive, unified user experience. We also integrated the site with Blackbaud’s Net Community fund raising software. This development work capped a research/ design/build effort that lasted just 90 days.

With the Give A Doodle campaign, we built a mobile-first web app for iOS and Android phones and tablets, keeping things fast and lightweight by using newer HTML5 features like Canvas to give users a fun, touch-enabled drawing experience. We helped GBFB launch the app at a local Boston outdoor event and supported their technical needs during the event.

Results That Feel Good

After launch, the total number of online gifts increased 11%.

Total dollars gifted online increased 22%.

The Give A Doodle application generated over 8,200 meal contributions.

More Case Studies