Sailors for the Sea Launches New Website

Newport, Rhode Island – July 22, 2013 – Sailors for the Sea, the only ocean conservation nonprofit focused on the sailing and boating community, today launched the redesigned www.sailorsforthesea.org, a website devoted to providing boaters with information about programs and resources designed to support their commitment to protecting the health of local waters and the ocean.

Consumers can expect a website that is easier to navigate – whether it be a race organizer looking to research and register for the Clean Regattas program, or the average citizen seeking to become a more eco-conscious boater – and more frequent posts and an ongoing expansion of the organization’s online presence because of the new web content management system that makes publishing content much easier.

“Education and empowerment form the cornerstone of Sailors for the Sea. We knew we needed a site that was more visually and interactively appealing, and that incorporates video, high resolution pictures, and larger text sizes, to create a more engaging user experience,” said Hilary Wiech, communications and programs manager, Sailors for the Sea. “One of the major challenges going into the project was organizing and presenting the large volume of information created over the years so that it was easy to find and enjoyable to read and learn from.”

The site, redesigned by Rhode-Island based Rubic Design + Interactive (RDI), a design and interactive studio specializing in digital branding and web applications, was created with several key goals in mind. The team was tasked with:

  • Producing a more modern website built on a web content management system that would make publishing and management of online content easy
  • Supporting a ‘responsive’ web design that would detect and adapt to smartphones or tablet-sized screens with minimum resizing, panning, and scrolling
  • Streamlining a user’s processes for online registration and downloading of program materials
  • Providing Sailors for the Sea with the tools needed to capture contact information at download and to track the user of their materials and program kits

According to Matt Dutra, founder & chief creative at Rubic, “The new website allows Sailors for the Sea staff to quickly create and publish content and multimedia – new essays with videos, graphics and slideshows, blogs, clean boating resources and other pages – without software or coding skills. Visitors will find that the enhanced automation throughout the site makes sign up and downloads of online forms for the Clean Regattas and Rainy Day Kits program much easier, and popular pages like Ocean Watch Essays and the blog, content and ‘calls to action’ that engage users to action or to get involved in the organization. The automation features also now allow Sailors for the Sea to easily collect and process information.”

Also important to the project was refreshing the look of the site while retaining and protecting Sailors for the Sea’s brand identity, and continuing to highlight the beautiful photographs generously donated by several well-known marine photographers.

Wiech notes, “The responsive web design was a key element in choosing to update our current website. The dramatically improved site is more intuitive and easier to navigate, and puts valuable information at a viewer’s fingertips regardless of device, which allows our programs to be out on the water with their users. Working with the Rubic team, we easily moved existing content, balanced a new platform while protecting our branding, and shortened content where needed to create a more engaging experience for a large spectrum of the boating community.”

The new site better connects the Sailors for the Sea resources with ways to take action, affect change, or get involved. Improvements to the Clean Regattas registration process and easier downloading of the Rainy Day Kits were made in response to user feedback. The presentation of the organization’s popular Ocean Watch Essays makes it easier for visitors to read the essays, which appear more like stories in a magazine and are now optimized for tablet viewing. Finally, the integration of social media sharing capabilities within the site enables both visitors and Sailors for the Sea staff to post the wealth of information on clean boating and ocean health issues that regularly populates the web site.

ABOUT Rubic Design + Interactive

Founded in the summer of 1999, Rubic Design + Interactive helps organizations harness the web to engage audiences, create change, and solve business and marketing challenges. Collaborating closely with clients and partners, Rubic creates user-friendly website experiences backed by compelling design and smart content management systems like Drupal. Rubic is a boutique web design studio located minutes from the beaches in Newport, Rhode Island or online at www.rubicdesign.com.

About Sailors for the Sea

Founded in 2004, Sailors for the Sea is a nonprofit organization that educates and empowers the boating community to protect and restore our oceans and local waters. For more information on or to participate in any of the Sailors for the Sea programs, or to support the organization, visit www.sailorsforthesea.org.