Boys and Girls Club of America “Find a Club” Tool Improves User Experience as Part of Broader Digital Marketing Initiative

Boys & Girls Clubs of America is a national non-profit organization headquartered in Atlanta with a mission to enable all young people, especially those most in need, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Established in 1860, there are now 4,300 Boys & Girls Club locations across the country and on U.S. military installations worldwide that provide after-school and summertime programming for children and teens.

Challenge

BGCA approached Dito in 2016 looking for a way to make it easier for BGCA.org users to find a Club in their area by filtering search characteristics, e.g., Weekend Hours, Summer Hours, Meals Provided, Teen Centers, and Clubs on Native Lands. As BGCA.org did not then offer a direct way to find a Club by location, users often resorted to searching the web, which frequently resulted in families not obtaining the necessary facts to choose an appropriate Club. BGCA sought to create an application to solve this need.

Solution

Seeking an efficient way to query and display information for BGCA’s 4,300 Club sites, Dito designed an app powered by BigQuery and App Engine. With its speed and high-load balancing capability, BigQuery was the best tool to store and query data on a web app.

The app service runs on App Engine on BGCA.org, which operates by adding an address, city or ZIP code, and selecting needed/wanted Club features. Using the information given, App Engine quickly and efficiently queries Boys & Girls Club data stored in BigQuery. Once the appropriate information is surfaced, Clubs are displayed in a numbered list and locations highlighted on a Google Map.

Benefits

This and other website modifications were devised and orchestrated by Jonathan Karron, National Vice President, Brand & Digital Strategy and Billy Grace, National Director of Digital Strategy for BGCA. Their leadership led to a 28% increase in website traffic, higher donations and Club search conversion, and better public engagement.

Billy sees value in the partnership with Google Cloud Platform and Dito. “As a result of this partnership, visitors to BGCA.org can now quickly and easily locate a Boys & Girls Club in their community that offers specific services and amenities they’re looking for.”

Dito looks forward to continuing to contribute to Boys & Girls Clubs of America as a technical partner and its mission, “To enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.”