Wachovia Redesign: An Exploration of Challenges 2003
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Wachovia Redesign: An Exploration of Challenges 2003

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Case study reviewing the challenges faced during the merger and redesign of the First Union and Wachovia websites. Presented at the IA Summit in 2003.

Case study reviewing the challenges faced during the merger and redesign of the First Union and Wachovia websites. Presented at the IA Summit in 2003.

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  • Effects of consolidation in financial services industry & the battle for Wachovia between Sun Trust & First Union <br /> The legacy banks and the concept of merger vs. acquisition <br /> “Merger of equals” between two banks acquisition-oriented banks <br /> Dominate retail banking on east coast, 1/3 business market, wealth clientele <br />
  • FL, GA, NC, SC, VA, Penn Del, CT, NY, MD <br />
  • Narrowed consideration to 4 possible solutions (legacy sites, move to legacy blue, split logo, new brand) <br /> Initial assumptions did not assume that maintaining channel parity would be a requirement; this proved critical to the general bank <br /> During the time the site dilemma was being debated corporate thinking about national brand campaigns vs. staggered releases shifted several times and with it our thinking about the 4 potential “brands” <br /> A new approach to consumer deposits emerged, with an 11/22/02 launch date <br /> Shut down FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com and create an interim site launching 6/30/02. Launch redesigned site on 8/03 with new deposits product line. <br /> Keep both FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com, provide new product information. Launch redesigned site on 8/03. <br /> Keep both FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com and provide new product information on a co-branded interim site beginning 5/02. Launch re-designed site on 8/03. <br /> Keep both FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com but move LOB content to Wachovia.Com as lobs convert. Launch redesigned site on 8/03. <br />
  • Narrowed consideration to 4 possible solutions (legacy sites, move to legacy blue, split logo, new brand) <br /> Initial assumptions did not assume that maintaining channel parity would be a requirement; this proved critical to the general bank <br /> During the time the site dilemma was being debated corporate thinking about national brand campaigns vs. staggered releases shifted several times and with it our thinking about the 4 potential “brands” <br /> A new approach to consumer deposits emerged, with an 11/22/02 launch date <br /> Shut down FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com and create an interim site launching 6/30/02. Launch redesigned site on 8/03 with new deposits product line. <br /> Keep both FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com, provide new product information. Launch redesigned site on 8/03. <br /> Keep both FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com and provide new product information on a co-branded interim site beginning 5/02. Launch re-designed site on 8/03. <br /> Keep both FirstUnion.Com and Wachovia.Com but move LOB content to Wachovia.Com as lobs convert. Launch redesigned site on 8/03. <br />
  • Overview of Nielsen//Net Ratings <br /> Nielsen//Net Ratings is a syndicated online measurement service that provides behavioral data for both home and work internet users <br /> The basis for the online audience measurement data that Nielsen provides is actual click-by-click Internet user behavior measured via software that has been installed on the computers of 225,000 individuals worldwide <br /> Site data provided on a weekly or monthly basis and can be viewed at the Site, Domain or Property level. Specific measurement variables include: <br /> Unique Audience <br /> Page views <br /> Time per person per visit <br /> Demographics <br /> Top pages within each site <br /> Top referring pages <br /> Data provided in this report have been aggregated over the last 6 months to provide a longitudinal view of site visitors <br /> Due to lack of reliable data for Wachovia among Work panel users, and to keep analysis consistent, data presented for both Wachovia and First Union has been collected only from Home panelists <br />
  • Considering the Legacy Site Analysis, a Relatively Simple User Segmentation Scheme Can Be Hypothesized <br />
  • Tom Brown’s Bankstocks <br /> http://www.bankstocks.com/article.php?id=677 <br /> Forrester (appropriate?) <br />

Transcript

  • 1. Wachovia.com Redesign An Exploration of Redesign Challenges ASIST IA Summit March 22, 2003 Samantha Bailey, VP Information Architecture Wachovia Corporation
  • 2. whoami • • • • Samantha Bailey, VP Information Architecture, Wachovia Corporation (2 yrs) Former Argonaut (5 years) Generalist by choice, taxonomy & CV fanatic by nature MILS, University of Michigan, 1996
  • 3. Overview • • • • Origins of the “site dilemma” The battle for the homepage Access to online banking UCD methodology…user-centered site?
  • 4. Background • Consolidation (Sun Trust) • Merger vs. acquisition &“Merger of equals” • The new Wachovia would dominate retail banking on east coast, 1/3 business market, significant wealth clientele What does this have to do with web design?
  • 5. The Site “ Dilemma” • Merge two robust, fully branded websites (with loyal customer bases) • 24-month, multi-product, multi-state conversion (9/01-8/03) • Geographically agnostic medium • Maintain channel parity with branches and call centers • Minimize customer impact
  • 6. The Legacy Websites First union.com, 13K pages, Vignette, drop-down nav, no default Wachovia.com, 3K pages, static HTML, tabbed nav, default to personal finance
  • 7. Options • • • • “Ostrich” (keep both legacy sites) “Two-step” (move to legacy blue) “Compromise” (split logo) “White Lightening” (new brand) Profound impacts on IA dev (time, flexibility)
  • 8. Shifting Ground • eCommerce group’s role: lead or follow? • Channel parity • National vs. regional brand campaigns • A new approach to consumer deposits emerged, with an 11/22/02 launch date
  • 9. The Site Solution • Maintain both legacy sites 9/1/0211/22/02 • Move line of business content to “surviving” platform, branded legacy Wachovia, with pre-11/22 conversions • Launch a new, fully branded and redesigned Wachovia.com website 11/22/02 (deposits)
  • 10. Site Solution Rationale • Wachovia.Com surviving domain name • Maximum promotion of brand with minimum confusion • Customer experience consistent with LOB conversion(s) • Mirrors LOB conversion communications
  • 11. The Battle for the Homepage • Does anyone use “public space” on a banking website? • LOB assumption flatly: NO • “My content must be on the homepage or it won’t be seen!”
  • 12. At what point in the IA development process should the homepage be designed?
  • 13. The Battle for the Homepage 82% of Site visitors 68% of Site visitors The majority of site visitors hit the public space at some point in their experience
  • 14. Most Use Homepage As Gateway to Authenticated Space but Nearly a Quarter Spend Entire Experience in Public Space 23% remain in public space 55% hit both public & authenticated space 22% remain in authenticated areas only 17% remain in public space 62% hit both public & authenticated space 21% remain in authenticated areas only
  • 15. PHEW! But how to get our business partners to believe the research?
  • 16. Ways to “ Segment” Users Aligned with Bank Offerings Banking Behavior Product “Ownership” Demographic Generic Needs Life Event Individual Small business Corporate Transactors Borrowers Lending Investment Savers/Investors Checking Affluents Emerging Wealth Money Management Buying a House Women Make Money New Baby Teens Borrow Money Retirement
  • 17. A Relatively Simple User Segmentation Scheme Can Be Hypothesized Non-bank customers Wealth Bank customer/ no online banking Corporate Women Investors College “Life Event” Spanishlanguage Prospective Employees Online banking customer Personal Finance Small Business Teens Press/PR The key question remains… what is the optimal segmentation approach for redesigning the public
  • 18. Considerations • Industry standards and trends • The new Wachovia mission • Retail dominates in #’s • CIB/Commercial dominates in $
  • 19. Discovery Process Competitive analysis • Nielsen//Net Ratings • Stakeholder interviews • Personas & Scenarios •
  • 20. Initial Wireframes • Sifter • Portal • Emphasize personal finance while representing all • Tabbed default to personal finance (see wireframe deck)
  • 21. Usability Testing • Lo-fi tested completion of task from each homepage • Surprise gender split: sifter/portal • Business considerations • Legacy issues
  • 22. Inconclusive Results • "A compromise is the art of dividing a cake in such a way that everyone believes that he has got the biggest piece." - Ludwig Erhard vs. • A compromise leaves everyone equally dissatisfied.
  • 23. So We Made the Decision With A Coin Toss (just kidding) • Selected emphasis on personal finance • Customer volume • Demand for corporate presence on homepage • Wealth Management continues to be an issue
  • 24. http://wachovia.com/
  • 25. The Online Banking Systems Geographically staggered system conversion in a geographically agnostic medium. • Wachovia: Corillion, integrated banking & billpay, 560,000 customers First union: C2 & Matilda, 2,500,000 customers
  • 26. Retail Scenario: Pre 11/02 Steve Brown is a legacy FTU customer from Delaware with Online Banking and visits firstunion.com to access his account information FTU System – C2 Sally Smith is a legacy FTU Florida customer with Online Banking and visits firstunion.com to access her account information You can now access your accounts at Wachovia. com New Wachovia look and feel FTU System – C2 Wachovia - Corillian Melissa Baker is a legacy Wachovia customer from North Carolina with Online Banking and visits wachovia.com to access her account information David Williams is a legacy Wachovia Florida customer with Online Banking and visits wachovia.com to access his account information Page 26
  • 27. Retail Scenario: Post 11/02 • The back-end complexities remain the same (until 8/03) • The “luxury” of having two sites with unique logins vanishes. • Users will have to be challenged…but how?
  • 28. Challenge With a Zip Code?
  • 29. Challenge With a Query?
  • 30. Who Is Who? Challenge with a zip code? Identify their originating branch? Snow birds and other multi-state householders Second-guessing and mass confusion in user testing
  • 31. “ Gateway”
  • 32. “ Gateway” Pros & Cons • Crafted each element on page after extensive usability testing for “least confusion” • Opted to leave legacy bank labels off because legacy FTU customers chose “Wachovia” labeled login • Trouble-shooting vs. How-do-I?
  • 33. Sore Spots Categorization issues: • Personal Finance vs. Investments • Small Business affinities • Corporate vs. Commercial • Contact Us ~ Depth, Directory • Labeling issues: • Wealth Management • Login • Interface issues: • “children” links on “menu” pages •
  • 34. Lessons Learned • The nature of buy-in • Relationship between IA, marketing, interface • Documentation (and the nature of stamina)
  • 35. Feedback • Bank Monitor: “ The design of the public homepage is effective in that it presents users with a snapshot of the main sections of the new site and provides key links to areas within each section in an organized and noncongestive fashion. ”
  • 36. Feedback • “ Within the first few moments of traversing this new site, I was hit by a plethora of usability nono's.  Take this services login page for instance.  This [collection] of form fields is so confusing that the designers had to add a "How to use this page" help file in the middle of the page....here's a clue, if you have to explain how to do a login...then I'm thinking the page probably needs a tad more work.  Multiple logins on the same page?  Requesting the user choose the services for which they're logging into?  WTF...why not have the services assigned to the login?  Wow, how incredibly useful...specially if people decide to bookmark this login page. (insert eye roll)” -Dan Beauchamp, RedCricket
  • 37. Feedback • “I was just browsing your site and wanted to drop you a line to say what a great job you and your team did on the redesign of the Wachovia site. I am a Wachovia customer and as an information architect I was very interested to see how the site would change [for good or bad]. I love the new look and the deviation from a standard site navigation on the home page, I think, was a great idea. It is very similar to the BBC approach. If you need any user feedback at this point I would love to participate. Again, great job.” -Jeremy Miller
  • 38. UCD Process  UC Site? Issue Site Solution Positives • • Homepage Treatment Gateway Approach • • • delivered on time, under budget rigorous UCD methodology (a first) Positive customer feedback Positive business unit reception 80% active users logged in within first month following conversion Negatives • • • • authenticated space not as consistent “sore spots” & post launch to-dos Login issues Continues to be a top call center question cluster
  • 39. Conclusion • Questions? • Contact information: • samantha.bailey@wachovia.com, samantha@baileysorts.com
  • 40. References • All wireframes developed by Wachovia Corp Customer Interaction Group (Samantha Bailey, David Barbin, Courtney Crowell, Michelle Downie) • Wachovia web graphic designs by Wachovia Corp Interactive Design Group (Max Nelson, Brian Williams, Ben Rubeck) • Slides 8-11, images created by Kevin Hill (Modem Media) • Slide 20, images created by Kristen Zaks (Accenture) • Slide 29, Bank Monitor magazine, Dec 2002 • Slide 30, RedCricket (Dan Beauchamp’s blog) http://www.redcricket.com/txt/archive/archive112002.htm • Slide 31, from email to Samantha Bailey 2/5/2003 by jeremy@jeremymiller.us