Create a best-in-class web experience, stand above the crowd, and increase web conversion rates.

3 min. read

Having headed up teams working with top financial services brands, I know the pressure can be relentless and trying to stay ahead of the competition is demanding.

So, how can brands know how their site compares to those of their competitors? It’s all about a particular kind of evaluation.

After nearly a decade of testing in a live environment with real prospects using A/B testing, I wanted to explore how to test and improve web conversion before releasing tests into the wild. Enter web user testing.

It’s a process you are probably familiar with, involving real prospects who go through specific web journeys and a moderator asking probing questions to find out what areas of the website cause confusion, frustration, or even drop-off.

The process is said to identify up to 80% of core issues and is a method I have seen lead to outstanding improvements.

Give me a moment to dig into details. Typically before undertaking web user testing, a brand may have a web audit conducted, and it is here that I felt there was no scientific process.

So, of course, we decided to look into changing this. We found and finetuned our own version of a Heuristic Evaluation.

This is a process based on academic research that identifies 140 elements to analyse every aspect of a website in order to make it easier and more enjoyable to use.

These 140 elements sit within 6 main areas: content placement, forms, search, interactions, navigation, and trust and persuasion.

The evaluation also stands as a great tool to then benchmark a website against its competitors. It helps identify which parts of a user journey the competition has done a great job at designing, but allows us to see how they can be developed further.

It guides us to treatments we should explore and improve upon Our reports include GA4 analysis to pin-point areas of the website that provide clear opportunities for improvement, followed by benchmarking by the heuristic evaluation of our client’s website and the top 3 competitors.

There are screen shots of the best treatments within the 6 key areas mentioned above. Our decks typically consist of over 60 slides of detailed analysis ending with a range of straightforward prioritised recommendations.

So for me, the steps to developing a best-in-class website designed to vastly improve web conversions are:

Have a benchmarking web audit Conduct web user testing Implement any obvious improvements Test in a live A/B format This process gets you to better results sooner and focuses testing on much better-developed solutions.

“But, what about the results?”, I hear you ask. Well, my last role before setting up my own company was at Gallaghers, where conversion improved from 6% to 22%.

Since then, I have seen this process allow many websites to enjoy conversions doubling to even quadrupling. To start your journey to creating your sector’s best-in-class website, get in touch and let’s talk about a scientific benchmarking web audit.

Kind regards

from Runway, Lee