What Would Western Wildlife Outreach Do?

Western Wildlife Outreach (WWO) works with partners to provide science-based information to community groups about the ecology, biology, and behavior of grizzly bears, black bears, cougars, and gray wolves. By engaging communities in wildlife and habitat stewardship activities, WWO programs foster an appreciation for large carnivores’ niche in maintaining ecosystem health — providing critical context to environmental recovery efforts happening throughout the Pacific Northwest.

nonprofit wildlife organization website screenshot
screenshot of WWO’s new WordPress site

By fall 2021, WWO’s old website was becoming endangered. Page load speed was sluggish, above 5 seconds. Volunteers and new staff could not easily add and update content. Compounded by a clunky user interface that was difficult to navigate, visitors were not engaging with the science-based content.


WWO found my nonprofit website marketing services thru 501 Commons. Soon, we embarked to completely rebuild their existing WordPress site, using the native Block Editor to provide a rich, intuitive editing interface, which showcases their rich wildlife photography.

Project objectives included:

  1. To refresh and modernize the website based on WWO’s existing brand identity;
  2. To improve ease of use – content management, information architecture, readability, and site maintenance;
  3. To improve the mobile responsiveness of the site layout for displays from phones to tablets to desktops – including a collapsible navigation menu on mobile;
  4. To improve compliance with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) level AA – including keyboard-navigable navigation, skip-to-content links, semantic HTML, and high color contrast [> 4.5:1 and > 3.5:1 for large text];
  5. To improve site security and performance.

Overall homepage size decreased 36% from 1.8 to 1.14 Mb, with another 36% decrease in web server requestsresulting in sub 2-3 second page load speeds.

Performance Analysis

Performance MetricOld website (November 2021)New Website (February 2022)
Google Lighthouse: Accessibility90/10098/100
Google Lighthouse: Best Practices80/10092/100
Google Lighthouse: Mobile Speed74/10094/100
Google Lighthouse: Desktop Speed97/10097/100
Google Lighthouse: Search Engine Optimization83/10098/100
WebPageTest Speed Index1.5952.029
Total Homepage File Size1.8 Mb
( 1.3 Mb Images + 110 Kb Scripts + 36 Kb CSS + 12 Kb HTML)
1.14 Mb
(788 Kb Images + 241 Kb Scripts + 69 Kb CSS + 44 Kb Fonts + 22 Kb HTML)
Total Web Server Requests67
(32 Images + 24 Scripts + 9 CSS + 1 HTML)
(11 Images + 17 Scripts + 11 CSS + 2 Fonts + 2 HTML)
Total Homepage Load TIme~2.4 seconds~2 seconds
WebPage Test Speed Index: median = ~3.591; top 10% = <1.388
In 2021, the average page size = ~2.4 Mb and median page size = ~2.1 Mb.
Database-driven websites, like WordPress, are more performance optimized when server requests are < 40 – 60.

Web Design + Development Team

Visual Design: Erik Fadiman
WordPress Theme Development: Scott Marlow

A Fresh Website Redesign for California Foundation

During the summer of 2021, Cecile Thomas of Make it Matter approached our team to redesign the website of the Girard Foundation.

Their vision is to foster innovation and systemic change in education with the goal of improving student outcomes in San Diego County and beyond. The old site was outdated in its appearance and needed to better present their recent accomplishments.

Our goal was to migrate all the existing website content into a fresh, modern Theme; and train the team to manage content with the new WordPress Block Editor.

California nonprofit foundation website redesign
Girard Foundation’s new look and feel

Michele is over the moon thrilled with the Girard Foundation website. One board member’s only email after receiving the link was “love love love it” The board chairman said it was ‘marvelous‘ and makes them look like a major player.
Cecile Thomas, Make-it-Matter

Performance Analysis (October 2021)

Google Lighthouse
Accessibility: 97/100
Best Practices: 100/100
Mobile Optimization: 82/100
Desktop Optimization: 96/100
Search Engine Optimization: 79/100

WebPageTest Speed Index: 1.992 (median = ~3.591; top 10% = <1.388)

Total Page File Size: 912 Kb ( 834 Kb Images + 131 Kb Scripts + 52 Kb CSS + 29 Kb Fonts + 11 Kb HTML) – In 2020, the average page size = ~2.4 Mb and median page size = ~2.1 Mb.
Total Web Server Requests: 29 (10 Images + 8 Scripts + 6 CSS + 2 Fonts + 2 Other + 1 HTML) [< 40 – 60 requests recommended]
Total Page Load Time: ~2 seconds

Web Design Team

Content and Creative Strategy: Make It Matter
Visual Design: Erik Fadiman
WordPress Theme Development: Scott Marlow

Providing WordPress Support, Empowering Clients, & Encouraging Accessibility

supported living services nonprofit website

A WordPress Theme rebuild for Alpha Supported Living Services – a non-profit agency providing supported living and group training home services to adults and children with developmental disabilities in King, Snohomish, and Spokane counties.

This latest WordPress website project involved helping a nonprofit to better comply with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (Level AA). By replacing the commercial paid Theme with an open source WordPress-approved Theme (_Underscores), accessibility benchmark scores improved markedly.

Scope of Work

accessibility testing
front-end web development
performance optimization
security hardening
search engine optimization
WordPress training and consulting


To improve conformance with WCAG Level AA, 3 navigation features were added: a ‘skip to content’ link to help visitors bypass repetitive navigation; a keyboard-navigable menu; and site search. For low vision visitors, color contrast ratios were increased to meet the minimum 4.5:1 guidelines; a second visual indicator was added to body text links; image-based text was replaced with text; and the minimum font size was increased to 16 pixels.

Other accessibility improvements included removing an auto-rotating content slider (that did not include a pause feature); integrating more accessible social media icons; and making telephone numbers more accessible to assistive technology and mobile devices.

Ongoing accessibility efforts include improving alternate text for images; converting inaccessible PDF documents, like Annual Reports, to Pages and Posts; and maintaining content in semantic HTML.


Additional work involved optimizing page load performance. By optimizing images for web loading and reducing the number of web server requests (generated by Plugins and the former Theme) by 46% – page load speed almost doubled.

Performance MetricOld website
New Website
Google Lighthouse: Accessibility71/100100/100
Google Lighthouse: Best Practices93/100100/100
WebPageTest Speed Index3.0921.654
Total Homepage File Size6.4 Mb (4 Mb Images + 937 Kb Scripts + 157 Kb CSS + 278 Kb Fonts + 63 Kb HTML)1.5 Mb (464 Kb Images + 763 Kb Scripts + 84 Kb CSS + 111 Kb Fonts + 72 Kb HTML)
Total Web Server Requests99 (13 Images + 32 Scripts + 13 CSS + 8 Other + 16 Font + 5 HTML)53 (8 Images + 20 Scripts + 10 CSS + 5 Fonts + 7 Other + 6 HTML)
Total Homepage Load TIme~3.1 seconds~1.7 seconds

WebPage Test Speed Index: median = ~3.591; top 10% = <1.388
In 2020, the average page size = ~2.4 Mb and median page size = ~2.1 Mb.
Database-driven websites, like WordPress, are more performance optimized when server requests are < 40 – 60.

Building Nonprofit Websites in King County

Nonprofit youth mentoring website screenshot

A redesigned WordPress website for The 4C Coalition – a community-based nonprofit, founded in 1999, that helps black and other youth of color succeed in school and in life. The 4C Coalition offers one-on-one mentoring, group mentoring and tutoring to 12- to 17-year-olds in King County.

Scope of Work

content migration
creative strategy
color palette development
front-end web development
online data management
performance optimization
security hardening
search engine optimization
visual design
WordPress training and consulting


Page load speed ranks in the top 15% of sites.

WebPageTest Speed Index: 1.737 (median = ~3.591; top 10% = <1.388)

Total Page File Size: 1.3 Mb (In 2020, the median web page size = ~2.1 MB; the average page size = ~2.4 Mb)
Total Web Server Requests: 48

Web Design Team

Content Strategy: Rita Cipalla
Photography: Rebecca Sullivan
Visual Design: Joan van den Berg
WordPress Theme DevelopmentScott Marlow


Nonprofit Website Training

Job training center website screenshot

Puget Sound Training Center provides career training and employment services to immigrants, refugees and under-served individuals. PSTC trains individuals who are clients of Washington State Labor and Industry (L&I) and Department of Rehabilitation (DVR); PSTC also partners with CBOs (Community Based Organizations) to provide customized skills training.

This website redesign project involved upgrading the job training center’s decade-old static HTML website into a mobile-first responsive layout, powered by an intuitive WordPress Content Management System. During the redesign, nonprofit staff were trained how to add and edit website content – including text, images, and links – using WordPress’ new Gutenberg Block Editor. In addition to editing content, staff can now use the block editor, which has been custom-branded to their identity, to create mobile responsive layouts.

Scope of Work

creative strategy
color palette development
front-end web development
performance optimization
security hardening
search engine optimization
visual design
WordPress training and consulting


Visual Design by: Joan van den Berg
Photography and WordPress Theme Development byScott Marlow