The best in its field


The best in its field


That’s what the team at GrainGrowers set out to do when they approached us to redevelop their primary platform.

GrainGrowers is a voice for Australian grain farmers with grower members across the country. They work with media and policy makers to foster a more profitable and sustainable grains industry. What makes GrainGrowers unique from other representative bodies is simple, they are farmers. Unlike other groups, their members are farmers themselves and they are at the heart of everything they do.

While the organisation has a supportive and loyal community, the website had not been updated in a number of years. Over time membership engagement had decreased as the site was not optimised for mobile and slow to load in rural parts of Australia (the best in field part) and the website serviced specific jobs-to-be-done for farmers, but wasn’t a destination for browsing.
Before jumping into the redesign, we wanted to thoroughly understand the GrainGrowers business and its users.

Deeper insights gained through immersive collaboration

Before jumping into the redesign, we wanted to thoroughly understand the GrainGrowers business and its users.

Over two days, the whole team immersed themselves in an intensive collaboration session, coming together to share knowledge and inspirations from different disciplines. The whole team was involved in combining technical, user experience and design audits aimed at finding efficiencies and identifying opportunities. This intensive collaboration also allowed us to achieve alignment around a vision and gain team velocity early.

Delivering a speedy experience - even in the paddock

The user experience was particularly an issue for mobile users and those with less than ideal connections to the internet, for instance those accessing from rural and remote areas - like literally on the tractor. This presented us with an opportunity to create a solution that was fast to load and ‘paddock friendly’.

A new structure and taxonomy surfaces a wealth of content

Equipped with a deeper understanding of the site’s foundation and functionality, we set out to redesign the IA and discover the perfect CMS to accommodate their rural users.

We proposed a new site architecture that moved from a hierarchical structure to a more flat and connected structure. This enabled us to build the sticky and engaging experience GrainGrowers wanted to achieve for their members. In collaboration with GrainGrowers we introduced a tag taxonomy to string together related content. Now growers can easily browse industry reports, member events and leadership development opportunities, all in their grower regions.

High-performing architecture delivers faster access

From very early on, and in response to the objective to have a high performance, secure website, we identified the opportunity to do a ‘Headless’ architecture to create the new website.

Simply put, a Headless Architecture separates the structure of the website’s content from the presentation of that content so that more appropriate technologies can be used for each part. The benefits of a Headless Architecture are many, but speed and security were the driving forces for this project. We used Sanity CMS for defining the structured content of the site and Gatsby and ReactJS to create the front-end experience.

Involving the audience for a truly grower-centred design

User validated designs were a key outcome for the project. Treejack testing was used to validate the new IA. Additionally, we overcame the challenge of remote testing during sowing season to assess key flows with their 3 audiences; grower, policy and media. Qualitative interviews ensured a truly grower-centred design.

In the site redesign, we took advantage of the extensive colour palette and the brand graphics and used it to help highlight and communicate content and create visual interest without having to rely on imagery.

We also made sure to provide flexibility for content editors to customise how modules appear on the site.

With the now paddock friendly website successfully in the hands of farmers on tractors across Australia, GrainGrowers and Pollen are poised to consistently learn from the user's experience, iterating and ensuring lightning speed content around policy, grower and industry development and advocacy​​ to their growers.