Giving Kiwis the clarity and confidence of what they can and can’t do in the outdoors during the COVID alert levels
Spearheaded by the Mountain Safety Council and Somar Digital, the COVID-19 Outdoors website was developed to simply and clearly communicate to Kiwis the acceptable outdoor recreation allowances during the various COVID alert levels.
The objective was to create a central website for Kiwis to go that had all the necessary information to make informed decisions about outdoor activities such as going to the beach or tramping.
The intended users were any Kiwi who wanted to go into the outdoors. Kiwis love the outdoors, it's part of our nature and who we are and one of the main ways to release a bit of stress during lockdown was being able to spend a bit of time outside. With that in mind the website had to be applicable and speak to all Kiwis during the COVID alert levels.
The website's simplicity makes it functional and easy to use. The branding has enough connection to the wider topic of COVID-19 (a very recognisable and trusted brand) whilst also connecting the dots to the outdoors and the Mountain Safety Council (another trusted brand), which means that users feel like they’re in a place where they can trust the information.
Kiwis Embracing the Project
Within the first 48 hours, 10,000 people completed over 20,000 searches for activities. Kiwis are now able to select a region and activity and get a concise answer back about whether they can participate in that activity and if there were any restrictions or further information needed to do so. It was developed on a mobile-first mentality so Kiwis can access the information anywhere, easily.
MSC and Somar Digital built-in functionality that enabled the website to show which outdoor activities had restrictions placed on them depending on the alert level from region to region throughout New Zealand. This functionality provides very tailored and specific results for each region giving Kiwis the clarity and confidence of what they can and can’t do in the outdoors.
UX Recognised by the Best Awards
Somar Digital and MSC are over-the-moon that the COVID-19 Outdoors website was recognised as a Finalist in the User Experience (UX) category at the 2020 Best Design Awards. Held annually, the Best Awards are New Zealand's most recognised authority in good design across a wide range of mediums. Being recognised as a Finalist in the UX category means that the COVID-19 outdoors website showcases excellence in UX design.
Nathan Watson, Operations Manager