Helping to grant children’s life-changing wishes

Embracing the MVP model

A platform that drives engagement and donations

Make-A-Wish UK appointed Giant to update its website. With ambitious growth plans, the charity needed a solid, stable, secure platform from which to grow income, volunteers and active communities united with a common purpose. Dependent on donations to fund its work, the website plays a critical role in driving income into the organisation both directly and as part of the attribution chain to conversion. We worked with the charity to rethink the website and no longer consider it as simply a platform for driving engagement and donation, but also as the shop window to the charity and the impact that wishes can have on children and young people with critical illnesses.

Combining MVP with a comprehensive ongoing strategy

With a long list of requirements, from multiple departments within the charity, Make-A-Wish concluded that a MVP model would be the most efficient use of time and budget. To get the user experience and infrastructure right, we invested more time in understanding the charity’s varied audiences and focused on developing a stable, scalable platform that combines core functionality with a user-first mentality. Any features that did not contribute to this immediate win, were pushed to phase two and we share a vision for developing the site further in line with industry trends and the charity’s growth.

Make-A-Wish UK website

A user-first approach for next-level engagement

Our proven charity sector approach ensures that everything we create is focused around the user. User centric journey planning, UX and creative ensures that we provide the users with all informational needs and advice on where experiences can be enhanced using rich media. We carried out multiple stakeholder interviews to produce a set of 12 personas.

We used these personas, along with current site analysis, and executed a Card Sorting Exercise with Make-A-Wish stakekeholders to formulate the basis of our information architecture.

By investing time in understanding the charity, we developed a platform that had solid, tried and tested foundations centred on the user.

Make-A-Wish UK Make-A-Wish UK
Make-A-Wish UK

Wish stories: bringing the mission front and centre

With such a compelling mission, it seemed only right to bring the children Make-A-Wish supports, to the forefront of the site. We designed the wish story pages to be extremely visual with the ability to donate to each individual child's wish. Each story has a sticky donation block that is visible at all times. The donation block outlines the current percentage funded and clickable donation amount buttons. The page also includes a wish list which breaks down each element that needs funding.

Make-A-Wish UK website

Our Technologies

We selected Python, an increasingly popular programming language, underpinned by the content management system, Django. We chose this CMS due to its scalability and flexibility and it enables us to simply add features and redesign elements when necessary. The plug-in-based construction allows the charity’s digital team to create custom content easily, without the need for any HTML knowledge.

A key requirement in the brief was a Salesforce integration. We worked closely with the Salesforce lead to ensure the product was synchronised at every stage of the platform build.


Bespoke donation platform

Make-A-Wish UK selected to use our bespoke donation platform that offers a fully customisable solution integrated with the CMS. We integrated Stripe to handle payments which enables the donation platform to support single and regular giving including data capture of Gift Aid mandates. Other key features supported by the donation platform include: appeals support, pay-in fundraising, supporter groups, Google tag manager / tracking.

Make-A-Wish UK website

Where are we now?

The new site launched in July 2019 and the initial reaction has been extremely positive amongst industry peers and stakeholders; with a number of features in the press too. In the first month, website users, new users and sessions went up by an average of 12% YoY.

The donation journey saw the most significant increase with a 273.4% rise suggesting that the new user experience, CTAs and information architecture have driven more users into the sales funnel. This led to 366 donations, a 122% YoY rise with a 0.9% conversion rate. These metrics show that investing time in understanding your audience and developing a stable, scalable platform builds the foundations for significant growth. We have a long-term partnership with Make-A-Wish UK and will further develop the site to implement phase two changes and tweak as the charity grows.


Unique users in the first month following the launch of the site


Entries into the donation journey in the first month


Increase in donations in the first month, compared to August 2018

"We worked with Giant to build our new website. Our site build delivered some real benefits to us including better payment and donor journeys and some behind the scenes direct integrations which save us considerable processing time. Giant delivered what we asked for as part of our MVP Phase 1, on time and to budget and we’re looking forward to continuing our journey with them – we have found the whole team to be reliable, smart, committed and enthusiastic."

Mags Rivett, Head of Marketing & Digital Strategy at Make-A-Wish UK

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