With this layered approach, the client was able to gain a deep understanding of the effectiveness of its website vis-à-vis different customer types and versus peers. These insights enabled the firm to establish development priorities and secure the necessary budget for making essential improvements to its client-facing technology.
A Leading Retirement Plan Provider Employs User Research and Audit Benchmarking to Identify UX Issues and Capability Gaps
One of the nation’s largest retirement plan providers made a strategic decision to invest in and grow its retail brokerage business. Before executing on this new vision, the firm sought a top-to-bottom assessment of its current brokerage website from a design, usability, navigation and capabilities standpoint with an eye toward identifying opportunities for improvement.The Solution
We developed a multi-prong research effort consisting of three concurrent work streams:
- Usability Testing & Reverse Card Sorting: We conducted a comprehensive usability study with a few dozen participants that had an existing retirement account relationship with the client. We tested participants on 11 major tasks and analyzed their performance/success rate, segmenting the data by four different customer demographic groups. We also administered a reverse card sort test, which identified a handful of significant navigational flaws in the site’s information architecture.
- Expert Evaluation: Our experienced usability analysts provided a detailed review of the site using established design principles. They offered several actionable recommendations, including methods for enhancing the link affordance of intra-page navigation tabs and ways for the client to offer an improved alerts platform and watchlist interface.
- Benchmarking Assessment: Using our Brokerage Audit framework, we graded the client’s brokerage website versus the capabilities offered by numerous peers and identified several significant functionality weakness. We provided the client with competitor rankings, gap analyses and best practice recommendations to address its major weaknesses.