2013-09-04 18:16:08 - Websites that provide an excellent, error free customer experience to ensure visitors find what they are looking for and want to come back are vital for any organisation that wants to be out in front of its peers today.
Websites need to be compliant with latest web standards and fast-moving legislation, free from links to online risks like malware and ‘phishing’ sites and they should be built in a way to enhance search engine optimisation, to ensure potential customers find them.
If you use a finance website regularly, you will know that even comparatively minor problems can affect user experience. Broken links, missing images, inaccessible pages and other errors can leave users frustrated and annoyed.
That’s why the latest Sitemorse Index of more than 200 UK top consumer finance websites is important.
Our automated checks, covering quality, user experience, accessibility, performance and search engine optimisation, provide a key marker for leading companies in this sector.
Topping our list of high performing websites,
with 8.9 out of a possible ten marks, is the Leeds Building Society, one of the UK’s top ten societies and an organisation that can trace its roots back to 1845.
The society is still owned by its members, and plans to remain so, but its website is state of the art, even allowing users to make secure mortgage applications online. Customers can view balances, quarterly or annual statements, and make online transfers through a secure, easy to use, 24 hour access service. The Leeds has scored consistently well in web benchmarks conducted by Sitemorse over the last seven years, and has moved two places up the table since our Q2 survey this year.
Northamptonshire-based Clarity Credit Solutions is rated second in the table, with a total score of 7.6. Set up in 2005, the company provides credit management solutions to a number of blue-chip clients. Clarity topped the Index in our previous survey in April this year.
Third in the survey and rising 21 places this time is Old Mutual Asset Managers, which describes its services, unusually, as "institutionally driven multi-boutique asset management". Old Mutual Asset Management is the name under which Old Mutual (US) Holdings Inc. conducts its asset management business. The parent company is an international group which originated in South Africa in the mid-1800s has bases in London and Boston employs 55,000 people and has more than 14 million customers. We scored the OMAM website as 8/10 overall.
Other top-ten rated banks and financial institutions this time, all with scores of more than seven out of ten possible marks, include BM Savings, Brown Shipley, Dudley Building Society, WH Ireland Stockbrokers, Welcome Finance, Intelligent Finance, Julius Baer Investments, and Advantage Finance.
Top risers in the Q3 Index include Siemens Financial Services Limited (up 70 places to 107th ), the website of the British Bankers' Association (+74 places to overall 30th), Nottingham Building Society (+94 places to 34th), UBS Investment Bank (rising 106 places to 115th) and the largest climber, Swiss finance group Mirabaud Investment Management (+143 to 57th).
More than 30 of the consumer finance websites scored well on accessibility, with more than six out of a possible ten marks in this key area, now backed up by UK law. Leeds Building Society and Julian Hodge Bank scored 9/10 on accessibility with Intelligent Finance and Daiwa Securities scoring eight.
About the Index
The quarterly Index Website Review, powered by the Sitemorse software platform, is an important independent benchmark that clearly shows how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It’s also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.
Sitemorse services such as Governisation and the Web Management Toolkit immediately find the issues that affect web users the most on any website, help demonstrate real improvement and ensure you have control and confidence in your web presence.
They will help you minimise unnecessary risk, issues covering everything from compliance with web standards to helping you deal with malware, protect your brand across even a large web presence, and enhance search engine optimisation to help more potential customers find you. They can help spotlight content that may need updating, issues with staff training and support, and focus supplier management. We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to request further details and / or an example.
• More information about our surveys and what they test can be found on our website www.sitemorse.com/survey/
• For further Information: Geoff Paddock, Head of Communications on +44 207 183 5588 gpaddock@Sitemorse.com