Many factors go into the selection of a new credit card, as consumers must decide which company offers the greatest value at the most effective costs. Considerations like interest rates, annual fees and cashback bonuses tend to front payment card company marketing materials, but recent data suggests the brand's website also plays a significant role in acquiring new customers. In its analysis of several financial institutions, internet and cloud monitoring firm Keynote named U.S. Bank as the top website for customer experience.
Several factors played into Keynote's ranking system. Performance was one aspect that contributed to the ease at which visitors could navigate to relevant pages and obtain a card. However, analysts also noted that site design considerations could affect overall experience. U.S. Bank scored highest in website speed, suggesting a strong value in high-performing cloud hosting solutions, and was commended for the overall layout of the pages on its digital property.
"Our quantitative analysis revealed that when actual consumers visited the card marketing sites, satisfaction with the credit card products drove acquisition likelihood, but so did aspects of the site that go well beyond the terms of the card issuer," said Chris Musto, general manager of the Keynote Competitive Research group at Keynote.
Tips for website optimization
Selecting a reliable cloud hosting service can lend significant performance and scalability advantages, ensuring that site speed meets user expectations. There are also many actions businesses can take to improve the effectiveness of existing investments. Writing for the Huffington Post, Jayson DeMers, CEO of SEO firm AudienceBloom, emphasized the importance of website design.
"Usability is what matters most," DeMers wrote. "Is your site pleasing? Is the content clear? Is it formatted so as to present friendly, readable, and distraction-free content? Do ads block your way around the website? Have you cloaked any links or text? Is the navigation simple and clear? And most importantly, can you get to read the content immediately or do you have to scroll through a maze before getting to the meat of your site?"
Accessibility choices like the ones DeMers outlined are important for enticing website visitors and can actually improve search rankings on Google. DeMers cited the recent search algorithm update Above the Fold, which penalizes pages for having too many ads. Businesses can also benefit from showcasing content authorship data. Whether that comes from employee profiles or author tags on the brand's blog, providing this information can add a personal touch to published content.