Case Study – Grace Hill

Customizing course catalog software for a training LMS.

The flexibility and customizability of Clean Catalog software makes us a great fit for many different educational institutions, even outside the realm of higher education. We recently worked with Grace Hill, a frontrunner in the Real Estate industry who offers online trainings in increasing property performance and other relevant topics in today’s housing market.

For many years, Grace Hill used a PDF catalog that posed significant obstacles to their staff’s workflow and even opposed outreach efforts by their sales and marketing team. Their outdated catalog wasn’t sustainable or robust enough to keep in step with their institution’s level of growth. Enter Clean Catalog. We collaborated with Grace Hill’s Sr. Director of Product Marketing, Allyson Levis, and her team to build a custom catalog that will be an asset for their staff, students, community, and marketing efforts for many years to come.

The Challenges

While using their previous PDF catalog, Grace Hill struggled with sharing their course content with clients and prospects. It was a clunky customer experience to share a PDF document with 700+ training courses, which led to content overwhelm and the inability to efficiently search for relevant courses. The Grace Hill team also frequently needs to make updates to their training content due to industry or regulatory changes, which was time-consuming when all edit requests required a total catalog edit, redesign, and export. Levis remembers that “even minor course changes (like course length or title change) would make the catalog inaccurate. The most painful part was that if a course was removed or added, the entire 50 page document would need to be recreated by our design team.”

These hurdles turned their course catalog into a bottleneck for their team’s efficiency. There were delays in publishing new courses and programs, and the Grace Hill staff was spending countless admin hours in catalog upkeep. To make matters worse, their sales and management team frequently used multiple catalog versions so that they could provide prospects with course listings specific to their interests and needs. Levis described managing these multiple catalog versions as an impossible task. Ready to graduate from such an antiquated content management process, Grace Hill was excited for a digital catalog solution through Clean Catalog.

The Process

Our transition process kicked off with Grace Hill exporting data from their LMS and sharing their different catalog versions. We then hit the ground running with migrating courses and organizing content in a more intuitive way. We worked closely with the Grace Hill team throughout the build-out process so that they could offer ongoing feedback on how to make their catalog most intuitive for their staff and tailored to their internal workflows. Once the shell of the site was built, we then moved our focus to the site design. Since Grace Hill is a for-profit organization and their catalog is shared frequently with prospective customers, we knew their site's appearance needed a “wow” factor. We used their primary website as a guide for the catalog design to ensure the two publications appear seamless and coherent. This involved integrating branded photography, color schemes, typography, and a modern user interface. We also created a custom navigation menu at the top of the page, which lends itself to overarching marketing goals with a specific call-to-action button.

We launched the fully custom catalog about 10 weeks later. The entire process went flawlessly, with Levis saying “the Clean Catalog team was fantastic. They walked us through the process and kept the project on track. We were a bit of a different use case than other clients, since we have a Training LMS solution vs. a University course catalog. But they found solutions that fit our needs perfectly. Our end result actually exceeded my expectation and the process was incredibly smooth.”

Our Solutions Grace Hill has a unique structure to their course content, with some courses having variations based by state, by language, or having a different supervisor version of the same class. As a preliminary step, we took a deep dive with their staff to ensure our team understood their unique course structures and formatting. With a deeper understanding, we were equipped to find better solutions for their needs. We implemented their unique classifiers into the catalog’s structure, with drop-down menus and search functions built around easily filtering courses.

The end result was a catalog site quite different from the typical higher education academic catalog format, which we were able to achieve thanks to the flexibility of our software. Levis was thrilled with the final solution, saying “I feel like we have a completely custom solution with Clean Catalog and I couldn't be more pleased…The quality of the solution, the people, and the implementation process was phenomenal. They were incredibly flexible and helpful throughout the process. We could share our pain and our needs and they would offer ideas on how to leverage the catalog in different ways to solve our challenges.”

Prior to an official catalog launch, we led a training session with the Grace Hill staff to ensure they felt confident using the backend of their new catalog site. Their team quickly picked up on the new software and expressed excitement over the ability to now make content updates and have them immediately published. Levis has received positive feedback from her team regarding the new site, saying “our content team works inside the admin interface, but they tell me it is very intuitive and easy to use. For our marketing department, Clean Catalog has been life changing.”

Looking Ahead

Grace Hill’s new catalog is not only an asset to their staff and current students, but is now a major selling point for prospective students. Their sales team is able to leverage both the digital catalog and export PDF versions based on the use case. Courses are now easy to edit, publish, and locate quickly within the search function. Even more, Grace Hill has already seen great success with their new catalog. Within four weeks of launching, Levis reported that they had received 15 “hot leads” from the website visitors clicking on the “request demo” call-to-action button on the site.Their team is thrilled with the jump in website conversions they’re already receiving from their revamped catalog and look forward to these number continuing to climb.

Levis summed up her experience by saying, “I'm truly a raving fan of everything related to your solution and your team. I would tell another organization to not waste another minute and get started on the process today. I only wish I found Clean Catalog sooner.”

We are so thrilled to have helped Grace Hill make such a tremendous leap in their business and can’t wait to see the growth they experience as a result. Moving forward, we’ll always be available to Grace Hill’s staff for any customer support questions, yearly staging, or new feature implementations.

Allyson Levis

Sr. Director of Product Marketing

I'm truly a raving fan of everything related to your solution and your team. I would tell another organization to not waste another minute and get started on the process today. I only wish I found Clean Catalog sooner.