Regional Brokerage Uses Expert Review to Streamline Website Redesign Process

The Challenge

Janney_Logo-1Janney Montgomery Scott, a regional brokerage firm based in Philadelphia with over $50 billion in client assets, decided to re-design its retail client website and begin managing it in house. The objective was to deliver an improved customer experience through a user friendly platform that Janney could update on an ongoing basis.

According to Kevin Gilligan, Vice President, Director of Client Marketing Strategies at Janney, “As we began to develop our new customer website, we looked to Corporate Insight for guidance in two areas. First, we wanted to get objective, third-party feedback on the usability of the new site. Second, we wanted to understand how the new site stacked up against key competitors’ capabilities.”

The Solution

For the first phase of this engagement, we reviewed initial wireframes for the major sections of the site and offered feedback on such issues as naming conventions, the position of content on individual pages, and functionality. Where appropriate, our analysts presented examples of best-in-class competitor sites to provide Janney with ideas for alternative designs. Corporate Insight offered over 50 actionable suggestions on seven different wireframes. Janney incorporated over 80% of these into their final site design.

After implementing our recommendations, Janney gave us an updated set of wireframes, and we began the second phase of the project: benchmarking its site against four of the firm’s key competitors’ sites. Leveraging our Brokerage Website Audit benchmarking framework, we identified 10 key features (e.g., Account Balances) that were important to investors and that were impacted by Janney’s re-design. Working with the Janney team to ensure we fully understood how the site would function in its finished state, we then assigned scores to the wireframes. Janney’s scores were then compared to the scores of its competitors, assessing the site’s strengths and weaknesses in terms of navigation, content, design, and functionality. We found that the site was competitive in most key areas and enjoyed some competitive advantages in customer service e-mail and account activity information.

Finally, we met with Janney’s design and executive management teams to present our findings. During this meeting, we provided the firm with a set of additional recommendations based on our gap analysis and survey data regarding the features that investors value in their brokerage firm’s website. These recommendations will serve the firm as it prioritizes additional functionality for future site iterations.

The Impact

According to Mr. Gilligan, “Corporate Insight provided us with the kind of critical third-party perspective we needed. Their feedback helped validate most of our design plans while at the same time identifying ways we could deliver an even better experience to clients. They also helped us understand how our new site will match up against our key competitors, which is essential as we plan for future site development.”

About Janney Montgomery Scott LLC
Established in 1832, Janney Montgomery Scott LLC provides comprehensive financial advice and superior service to individual, corporate and institutional investors. A full-service financial services firm, we are committed to providing individuals, and families, advice through a wealth management approach. We focus on the delivery of strategic financial plans that utilize a variety of financial products and services best suited to help meet their unique financial goals. Janney is equally committed to providing our corporate and institutional clients objective advice for the successful execution of their unique business plans. We provide advice and service to clients through a network of professionals in branch offices located primarily along the east coast. Janney is an independently operated subsidiary of The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company. We are a member of the New York Stock Exchange, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation.