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Association of Public and Land-grant Universities

Student on a campus

Increasing Engagement Through Audience-focused Design

The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) engaged SAI Digital to redesign their outdated website and create a dynamic, user-friendly experience for its vast audience of more than 230 member institutions. Connecting with current members was a priority; the prior website's navigation was not intuitive for the primary end-users. SAI Digital rearchitected site navigation and transitioned terminology from being internally-focused to member-focused. To accomplish this, we conducted a member survey, interviewed APLU staff and conducted an online card sorting activity to gain a solid understanding of how members would organize and access website content.

APLU website displayed on a laptop, tablet, and phone

Fully Responsive for Optimal User Experience

The former APLU website was not mobile-friendly, making it difficult for visitors using a phone or tablet to learn more about the organization or simply catch up on news. Redesigning the site included a focus on making each page fully responsive, creating a seamless experience for users, regardless of screen size.

Organized, Easy-to-find Resources

With a focus on research, advocacy and policy for higher education, APLU has a significant amount of website content, from thought leadership articles, to downloadable research findings and reports, to news, publications, and member updates. The new website features content types that allow APLU to streamline the vast amount of content for website visitors in a visually appealing, easy-to-use, functional design.


Rich in imagery and user-focused functionality, the APLU website boasts new features that further the mission of this education-focused association. A publication library allows content administrators to feature resources and relate them to relevant projects, initiatives and offices. A custom Google map embedded within the site allows users to filter member institutions by type and location, and a comprehensive calendar system gives users the ability to tag events with associated councils and commissions. A successful communication tool, the new website has allowed APLU to increase its mission in the U.S., Mexico and Canada.

"The new site provides us with a much more effective way to communicate our work and interact with our members, policymakers, journalists, and the general public."
Jeff Lieberson
Vice President of Public Affairs

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