JAT needed to refresh their website, improve how information was disseminated, handle memberships and streamline event ticket sales.
JAT serves a worldwide community of translators centered around the Japanese language as well as a multitude of additional languages.
The JAT mission was no longer being well served. The site was showing it's age. Content management was cumbersome and new online revenue streams were ripe for introduction.
JAT's network and reach is so big that even teams at Solspace have used their services in the past.
The new JAT website was a start to finish project for Solspace. We handled the overall system architecture, strategy, site design as well as e-commerce implementation and content stewardship.
We focused on delivering Web Reliability. We developed a website that stays out of JAT's way while making sure it does all the work expected of it.
The good people at the Japanese Association of Translators (JAT) brought us on to update their website. Our task was to get it into shape to meet the requirements of Web Reliability. It needed to be devoid of friction points so JAT clients could find translators, register for events, and pay for their memberships.
Compared to the previous site, many aspects became better automated: ticket sales occur at a regular pace, JAT members manage their profiles on their own without help, JAT admins easily post email newsletter-type communication through their forum. And legacy event archiving is automatic when a new event takes place.
JAT approached Solspace looking for a refresh for their aging ExpressionEngine website. JAT also hosts yearly conferences for their community of translators. Each year administrators had to dive deep into ExpressionEngine's file system and code new templates for each conference. And they still had to archive the previous conference. Surely there was a better way to do handle this.
With Solspace's extensive experience and knowledge with ExpressionEngine, we provided not only a new simplified and responsive design but new ways to harness the power of their CMS as well. In particular, Solspace transformed the conference management functionality so previous conferences are automatically archived, photos, videos, and all when a new conference is coming up.
JAT was also relieved to never have to code another template again. The website now handles conference page creation and presentation without writing a single line of code in a template!
Before its relationship with Solspace, JAT was sending newsletters and communications through a custom mailing list plugin created by a previous developer. Unfortunately, the solution still required manual tasks and didn't scale very well.
Luckily, ExpressionEngine provides a Discussion Forum module that was implemented, with a few tweaks suggested by Solspace, to handle discussion and messages for the JAT community.
Another custom plugin was managing JAT membership, but this also needed to scale. Further, JAT was looking at payment options beyond credit cards, namely bank transfers and payment at convenience stores.
Solspace provided a strategy that would allow members to pay their fees directly on the website through the Komoju payment gateway system (which allows credit card, bank transfer, convenience store, and more payment methods in Japan). We also created automations for complex membership renewals, including email notifications of upcoming membership expiration, allowance for grace periods, and membership expiration.
Finally, we helped JAT sell conference tickets using payment gateways and currencies that change each year (eg. one year in USD, another in JPY).
A site for Japanese translators obviously needs to handle more than one language. Luckily Solspace knows multi-language. In fact, some of Solspace's team members understand Japanese and have knowledge of how eCommerce and language need to be handled in Japan.
With such a perfect match, handling a language switcher, translated texts, and requirements for a site that needs to serve Japanese users was smooth sailing for JAT and Solspace.