Client: NHRA - National Hotrod Association
Role: Lead UX Design
The National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) is a drag racing governing body, which sets rules in drag racing and hosts events in the United States and Canada. With over 40,000 drivers in its roster, the NHRA is the largest motorsports sanctioning body in the world.
NHRA needed a digital platform that truly reflected the brand, increased commercial value, and revenue from sponsors, ticket sales, and provided fans with an immersive experience of the sport – all of this to be achieved prior to the start of the 2017 season.
Before the first engine started, Lightmaker successfully launched a fully responsive platform giving users access to live timing, race results and historical data while giving NHRA the ability to increase sponsorship and commercial opportunities.
Building the Right Foundation.
At Lightmaker, we have an extensive, well-rounded experience with a multitude of different cutting-edge web technologies. We can build on various platforms, but our ultimate goal is to create a foundation that meets a client’s specific needs. We achieve this by weighing all the options.
During our Discovery phase, we evaluated multiple content management systems (CMS) while considering NHRA’s need for an effective CMS that offers content editors greater control and ability to scale over time. Another key requirement was ensuring that the CMS did not complicate editorial workflows.
Lightmaker and NHRA ultimately selected Drupal 8 as the foundation for the new platform. Drupal is a leading open-source enterprise CMS that offers a standard feature set but is also extremely customizable. The platform allows for straightforward editorial workflows and enterprise hosting and developer support is available from Acquia with 99.95% uptime guarantees.
Mobile First Approach.
The previous NHRA.com was not optimized for mobile or tablet user experiences, though the traffic was skewing significantly to mobile devices. By launching a new responsive experience, NHRA’s commercial benefits and value is extended across devices and improves the overall user experience to make content and information consumption easier for fans.
Mobile is not a feature, it’s a necessity. The mobile experience on NHRA’s redesigned platform is just as fulfilling as the desktop. All content is available, all the time, on all devices.
Immersive User Experience.
In the end, the ultimate goal was to offer fans an interactive experience in which they can feel the energy of the sport. The platform offers event-based features that showcase relevant information that fans want to know in a timely manner.
Fans have unlimited access to live scoring during an event, post-race results, historical data, driver information, and everything else they need to know to fully immerse into the sport.
The user experience and design of the new platform also heavily considered the commercial needs of NHRA. Sponsorship and advertising features were integrated throughout the experience allowing NHRA to implement a new tiered structure for sponsors and advertisers.
The new digital platform has been well-received by fans many of whom have expressed positive remarks via social media and feedback gathered from NHRA.com. As we move forward, Lightmaker and NHRA has developed a roadmap full of enhancements to the platform as well as digital offerings that will compliment NHRA.com.