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What Is A Web User Journey & What It Means For Your Organization

WebsitesMultimedia & Design

By: Victoria Greene, branding consultant and freelance writer at VictoriaEcommerce

Every time a web user visits your site they have a journey in mind and you should you have journey in mind for them. Without this, neither you nor your users will get value from your website.

Below I have explained what a web user journey is and demonstrated how your nonprofit organization can ensure the journey you and your users take arrives at a destination that benefits you both.

Recommended reading: Three Principles to Optimize Your Nonprofit Website for Conversion

What is a web user journey?

It’s simple really:

A user journey map (also known as a customer journey map) is a diagram that visually illustrate the user flow through your site, starting with initial contact or discovery, and continuing through the process of engagement into long-term loyalty and advocacy.

It identifies key interactions and touchpoints with your website or mobile app and describes in detail the customer's goals, motivations, and feelings at each step.

- Credit: Optimizely

A well-designed user journey allows your site visitors to quickly establish how they can make their way through your website and reach their desired end goal – their reason for visiting your website.

In order to provide your users with a journey that meets their needs, ask yourself these questions:

  1. What goals do your web users have?
  2. What actions do you want users to take on your website?

What goals do your web users have?

Your web users are visiting your non-profit website for a number of reasons, including:

  • To find out exactly what your nonprofit org does
  • To see examples of your nonprofit putting your good work into practice
  • To establish how they can help contribute to the cause(s) your nonprofit supports

These are just a few of the reasons your web users are visiting your website, but they represent a great starting point to help you establish whether you are helping them to reach their end goal.

There is also a huge amount of software available to help you get further insight into what your web users want from your website.

Google Analytics allows you to look at which pages are receiving the greatest number of views, allowing you to establish where your web users are heading to. The video below is a comprehensive guide on how you can use Google Analytics. Watch it now to better understand the journey that your web users want to take…

What goals do you have for your web users?

Each nonprofit have their own objectives and that’s no different for you.

However, whether you wish to provide the world with clean water, help to empower vulnerable individuals, or tackle climate change, the goal you have for your users is the same: you want them to donate their time, money, skills, or resources to help advance your cause.

What you need to ensure is that you bring together the journey your web users wish to take and the goals that you have for your web users.

How to align web user journey and your goals

Charity: Water are an excellent example of a nonprofit that has web user journey aligned with their goals for their web user.

From their landing page onwards, they encourage their users to support their cause by making a donation to their nonprofit. Below you can see how their approach works in practice...

Charity Village screenshot

This means that whatever stage of the journey that their web users find themselves on, there is always a link between the goals of Charity: Water and their website users.

This merging of web user journey and website goals isn’t something that is restricted to nonprofit organizations.

Charity T is a t-shirt company that you can find on Exchange. Its goal is to help charitable organizations by selling t-shirts that give 20% of the proceeds to a number of charities.

They make it simple for their web users to buy one of their t-shirts, with the status of their bag (shopping cart) shown in the same place on every page, but make it clear throughout that any purchase they make will go towards supporting a valuable cause.

CharityT Screenshot

If your nonprofit helps to support your cause(s) by selling items, then adopting this strategy of keeping your users informed of their buying status throughout their web journey could help you sell more goods and have more funds to commit to your cause. 

Technology to improve web user journey

Having a clear understanding of the needs of your users, making the most of analytics software, and looking at the sites of your peers will all help you to improve the web user journey provided by your website. But don’t stop there: there is some great free technology to help you make even greater improvements in the form of task management apps.

The mapping software Canvanizer is one such example. Using this free software, you can create web user journey maps and track them from start to finish.

Canvanizer Logo

A web user journey makes a big difference to your organization. It’s about making sure that the people visiting your website are getting the right information at the right time and ensuring that this translates into them achieving the goals that you have mapped out for them.

If you would like to learn even more about web user journey’s then watch the brilliant guide below.

About the Author

Victoria Greene is a branding consultant and freelance writer. On her blog, VictoriaEcommerce, she discusses how website owners can get the most out of their websites and achieve goals they set for their websites.