The USDA is the government department in charge of food safety, agriculture, rural development and nutritional development with priorities focusing on equal employment opportunities, addressing climate change, finding new market opportunities and being active on food and nutrition insecurities. A user might visit their website to obtain a loan, get pandemic assistance or find help preparing or recovering for a natural disaster, among many other reasons.
What was my role?
This was a solo project, so I performed functionality user tests on the website, then resorted the Information Architecture so that it might be easier for anyone visiting the website to navigate without having to rely on the search function unless absolutely necessary. I then gave the main page stylization to make it more visually appealing.
The current USDA website needs a better looking and better functioning website. The current website is confusing with unclear navigational elements and similar seeming links that lead to other different websites, leaving user lost, unsure of how to get the information they needed and relying entirely on the search functions (which produced just as confusing search queries).
I found it important to think of the the main page as the Grand Central Station of the various Agencies of the USDA, redesigning the Information Architecture for simplicity while putting the various branches all together while also making it visually appealing and reducing the amount of information overload.
After fixing and iterating from the User Tests, the next step in this project would be to further create pages until the entire USDA website is incorporated with this new design. A project like this could take many months or years to complete. To get a design like this into the hands of the government would take approval from many boards with lots of bureaucracy, so for now, the project will simply remain as a case study.