by Ben Atchison, Data4Good


The Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT) Limited (ALS) opened their doors in 1970 in Redfern as the first Aboriginal Legal Service in Australia and the first free legal assistance service in Australia. Today, the ALS is made up of over 270 staff across 23 locations throughout NSW and the ACT.

The ALS is a proud Aboriginal community-controlled organisation, with its limited resources primarily dedicated to providing legal services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults, children and families. Additionally, the ALS has a strong focus on policy and law reform work, ensuring that Aboriginal voices are heard when it comes to laws and government policies that impact Aboriginal communities.


The Challenge 

The ALS website plays an important public-facing role in the services ALS provides to the community, with objectives including: 

  • Provide relevant content by understanding where visitors are referred from (e.g. social media, Google) and the most popular content viewed 
  • Encourage financial support by providing a smooth donation process 
  • Attract quality staff and volunteers via the recruitment pages 

With limited resources and experience in web analytics, the ALS was constrained in its ability to analyse how well the website was meeting these objectives. 


The Approach 

Data4Good and the ALS worked together on a multi-pronged approach to this challenge: 


Audit the current website setup 

Working with the ALS’ web development partner, Data4Good reviewed the current capability to track and report on ALS website visitor activity. This focused on Google Tag Manager (which enables the addition of tracking codes, or tags, to a website) and Google Analytics (which reports on website activity, including customised events defined by tags). 

This audit showed that by adding more tags and tracking additional events on the website, ALS would be better placed to understand visitor behaviour and how well the website was meeting its objectives.  


Uplift web analytics capability 

Having received the go-ahead from the ALS, Data4Good proceeded with implementing the recommendations from the web analytics review. New events were implemented, including: 

  • Scroll depth: tracking how far down a page a user scrolls 
  • Timer: tracks when a user spends 30 seconds on a page 
  • Video interactions: tracks when a user starts, pauses, progresses, seeks/buffers, completes a YouTube video 
  • Social clicks: tracks when a user clicks to ALS social profile 
  • Form steps: tracks when a user progresses to each step of a form (particularly useful for understanding the ALS donation process) 

With the additional tracking in place, it was now time to sit back and collect some data… 


Report and Train 

In conjunction with out of the box Google Analytics functionality, the new events provided the ability to ask and explore a range of questions such as 

  • Where are donors coming from? 
  • How efficient is the donation process, and are there drop-off points that need addressing? 
  • What are people looking for on the website? 
  • How effective is the job recruitment content? 

Data4Good demonstrated how to explore these and other questions using Google Analytics. For example, the behaviour flow chart below illustrates the starting pages that visitors land on, which subsequent pages they navigate to, and points where they drop off the ALS website. 

Figure: Behaviour Flow and Drop-Off Points 


The Outcome 

The ALS now has the ability to understand interactions with its website in much greater detail. It is able to understand where traffic is originating from, enabling better targeting of campaigns and use of social media. 

The important donations process can now be understood step by step, allowing identification of drop off points which can be refined, removing unnecessary barriers from supporters providing financial support. 

Overall, the ALS now has a greater ability to understand visitor interaction with its website, ensuring relevant content is provided, maximising the completion rate of intending donors and promoting job opportunities to candidates. 

A big thank you to Storm Jarvie and Monica Lam for volunteering their expertise and time, and to the ALS’ Alyssa Robinson for guiding the work and allowing Data4Good to be involved. 


“It was fantastic to access professional analytics consultancy free-of-charge through Data4Good, meaning the ALS could strengthen our web analytics without diverting any funds from our vital community services. D4G matched us with two volunteers, Storm and Monica, who were both experts in their field and a pleasure to work with.  Ben and Veronica from D4G also provided excellent oversight and guidance, ensuring that the project stayed on track. At the completion of this project, the ALS is in a much stronger position to gather insights from our web data and apply them accordingly to ensure our website is delivering results for our clients and community, our donors and supporters, and for the ALS itself.” Alyssa Robinson, The Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT) Limited


About the Author

Ben Atchison | Linkedin
Program Manager | Delivery Lead | Data and Analytics Professional

Ben is a PMP-certified project manager and agile scrum master with over 20 years of experience in the IT industry, focusing on data and analytics. When not volunteering with Data4Good, Ben is a Delivery Manager at Altis Consulting where he matches their services with client needs and oversees the successful delivery of projects.