The Houston Grand Opera (HGO) is one of the nation's most innovative performaning arts organizations. They decided to make their online performance as innovative as those on-stage.
The Houston Grand Opera (HGO) decided to do a major revamp of their Web site. They decided to add functionality including a Content Management System (CMS) and specialized application allowing the HGO to sell tickets online.
We focused first on the Information Architecture (IA) and how to lay out the considerable content needed on the site. Before investing considerable time and money into building the site, we tested the effectiveness of the IA.
This is done by creating a “wireframe” site, which is a skeletal representation of the navigation and other IA elements. Testing involved 20 individuals from various backgrounds who were asked to participate in separate 30 minute sessions.
In each session we ask a series of questions such as "How do you buy a ticket?" or "How do find more information about Tosca?" We observed and measured how the individuals used the IA and navigation to find specific content. Based on this testing, several refinements were made to improve the usability.
To go along with a well designed site, we added the functionality to make it great tool for both the HGO and opera lovers. By managing the integration of ticketing software, the HGO can lower costs, improve forecasts and reporting, and make it easier for its audience to enjoy the opera.
Our staff also built a customized a CMS that allows the HGO staff manage the constantly changing content on their site.
By working with the HGO staff and outside vendors, we created a site that is as functional as it is visually distinctive. A site works for the client, the audience and coveys the sense of excellence that the HGO puts into all of its performances.