The Air Ambulance Service

The Air Ambulance helicopter

A dynamic, frictionless website allowing this life-saving charity to consolidate its brand and increase donations.

Focus area

  • Advisory
  • Creative
  • Tech

Industry

  • Charity

Overview

The Air Ambulance Service (TAAS) saves lives in situations where conventional services would struggle with response time or accessibility. Incorporating both helicopters and critical care cars, TAAS carries out an average of 250 missions a month via both air and land.

The charity has offices, shops, depots and emergency stations scattered throughout the Midlands, representing a significant infrastructure to manage and maintain. TAAS receives no government funding, and is completely reliant on donations and the goodwill of volunteers for income and resources. With a target revenue of £32M per year, their online presence has a vital role to play in facilitating donations and encouraging people to help.

17%

increase in revenue from online
donations six months after launch

45.79%

increase in average donation
value in the same time period

36.9%

increase in returning
users (year-on-year)

17,700

new sessions generated
by individual shop landing pages

20.3%

growth in organic traffic six months after launch

The challenge

The Air Ambulance Service wanted to consolidate its two flagship charities – Local Air Ambulance and National Children’s Air Ambulance – into one comprehensive online platform. This needed to primarily raise funds through donations but also showcase their activities, provide valuable information to users and bring clarity to the organisation’s new structure, brand and message.

Although the previous two websites were already on WordPress, this new strategy demanded a ground-up redesign and rebuild in order to dramatically improve site speed and allow for easier maintenance and updates by the in-house team. As the ageing websites were not meeting GDPR and security best practices, security was also a concern. Challenges included:

Online visibility: TAAS’s two websites already had good traction in search engines, which they didn’t want to lose when migrating their content to one new site. 

Visitor engagement: There was very little to engage site visitors right away, which can be forgiven by charity-minded individuals, but didn’t excite people to get more involved.

User experience: Their legacy design and slow page loading speed would make for a poor visitor experience and doubtless put off many visitors.

In-house updates: While their team was able to manually update pages themselves, the process was clunky and took too much time, with lacklustre results. This was especially an issue in the case of wider emergencies, when users are scrambling for facts and details.

Sales: While physical sales were thriving through their shops, TAAS had no centralised way for people to purchase items online – something most consumers take for granted.

“The Air Ambulance Service has a special place in my heart and I’m incredibly proud that our team has been part of its recent digital transformation. It was an exciting challenge that relied on us drawing from the expertise of multiple teams within our agency. Delighted with the end result.”

James Bavington

Project Director

TAAS website
TAAS website
TAAS website
TAAS website

What we did

Our discovery phase gave us an in-depth understanding of TAAS’s existing supporters and target audiences – from parents and grandparents to related clubs, societies and the medical and educational sectors, on both local and national levels – and how to reach them. We then planned and built a new website to bring all the charity’s activities under one roof, engage visitors, track user data, measure success against KPIs and increase donations through better conversions. 

Protecting website ranking: Thanks to careful attention from the SEO team, the new website retained the authority of the previous sites and the number of visitors actually increased. Six months after launching the new site, we were happy to report that year-on-year organic traffic had increased by 20.3%, with overall site traffic up 26.8%.

Improved engagement: Visitors are immediately engaged by strong video content, positive messaging and clear, straightforward opportunities to make donations right away – whether financial or material. We also integrated social media into the site for more fresh and personal contact.

Enhanced user experience: Improved design, navigation and tagging provided a fast, mobile-first, app-like experience and with each page acting as a landing page. Further information is cued by well-chosen visuals, and users are able to find what they are looking for in one click.

Speedy updates: We set up the CMS to enable TAAS’s team members to get valuable information, news, updates, campaigns, blog posts and any other announcements online as fast and smoothly as possible, as and when users need to see them. 

Easy online sales: We also added e-commerce functionality to the site, so visitors can now browse and buy a wide selection of official TAAS merchandise, toys, stationery and gifts, as well as a host of pre-loved items via their official Ebay account, with links also to local charity shops’ Facebook Marketplace stores.

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