Who We Worked With
Black History Walks have been operating fascinating tours around London for 14 years and have over 20 years of experience delivering brilliant talks and film exhibitions on Black History and culture.
Championed by Condé Nast Traveler, the BBC and The Guardian and a raft of other huge names, the tours have acclaimed success and have won awards.
Despite the 2020 pandemic, lockdown allowed Black History Walks to expand their offering to online talks and events, so the existing site was now brimming with information. But while it was full of interesting content, the site was difficult to navigate and looked out of date and uninspiring — a far cry from the dynamic and passionate events on offer.
Users were finding the site, but their high bounce rate told a story: people just could not find what they were looking for.
Following the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement, it felt important to give such a big part of London’s black history scene an impressive online presence. So, Exposure Ninja offered to gift Black History Walks a website that showed off their remarkable accolades and allowed their users to navigate the many online events on offer easily.
Black History Walks already had a dedicated and passionate following across London and beyond. Their brand was strong, with a knowledgeable tone of voice and a growing online presence. Now they needed a website that would make that brand proud. One that would keep users on the site and converting in one of several ways:
- Booking an event through Eventbrite
- Signing up for the newsletter
- Getting in touch to book a personal tour.
As with all of our clients, we spoke at length with Black History Walks about everything they had going on with their business, and believe us, it was a lot! The number of talks, walks, tours, and exhibitions — not to mention film screenings — Black History Walks offer is both astonishing and inspiring.
Our objective was to answer this question: how can we feature all the amazing content of the old site but in a way that was easy for users to understand, navigate and ultimately make a booking?
How We Achieved It
The owner of Black History Walks is a published author, so we applied his passionate tone of voice to the new site. In true Ninja fashion, we ensured that we fully optimised all copy for SEO.
With such a wealth of content on the old site, we needed to get organised and remove any obstacles that might stop a user from booking an event. For clarity, we decided to add more structure to the content, separating the key information and breaking up the copy with imagery. Not only this, but the website had to answer some frequently asked questions up-front and allow users plenty of opportunities to convert with strategically placed CTAs.
Importing old content and categories directly into the new site meant a risk of some pages not displaying properly. The best solution was to rebuild the site from scratch, with some clear categories in place and a neat template that allowed all vital information to be displayed clearly. Choosing not to import old data in this way has implications on the site’s rankings, but naturally, we had a plan of action to counter this.
The old Black History Walks website housed all of their new events — and served as an archive for older events. Copying across some of this archived material would preserve the Google ranking of the site. We decided to move the event pages that ranked best to the new site manually to ensure they followed the fresh look and feel.
Finally, the design was important. While the old site was brimming with information, it felt cluttered and the right information was tricky to find. We opted for a bright, clean design with some gorgeous imagery from the walks and talks, so users would have a sense of what to expect.
Clearly displayed information, a bright, fresh look, and easy-to-navigate categories are all plain to see within the new site. All calls to action are relevant and plentiful, allowing users to book or get in touch without having to search through piles of information.
Back in July 2020, the old site had a bounce rate of 72.6%. We knew that Black History Walks was widely loved, so it was realistic to assume that users just weren’t finding what they were looking for on the site.
Fast forward to September 2020, following the launch of the new site, the bounce rate fell to 56%, a drop of almost 20%, where it has remained stable.
As of March 2021, Black History Walks converts at a spectacular 9.73% — an industry-beating average taken from September up to March 2021.
It’s fair to say that our client is as delighted with the new Black History Walks site as we are. His review certainly brought a smile to all our faces.
“Exposure Ninja gave our tired and outdated website a thorough review, clean up and renovation. It was like taking your clapped out Ford Escort to the garage, asking them to tune it up, and when you go back three weeks later, they give you a brand new, customised Aston Martin with your initials sewn into the front leather seats. The service was quick, comprehensive, detailed, fully explained before, during and after, and the Ninjas gave daily and sometimes hourly updates. Plus a six week warranty period.”