Latest News

Over the years we have expanded the range of tests Sitemorse offers, highlighted important news and ranked top websites according to their Sitemorse result.

  • 2015 Q2/UK Retail 500 Websites : web benchmark : Jewellery Catalogue rises 331 - 21 May 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 8.64 is W Boyes & Co http://www.boyes.co.uk/

    Screenshot of W Boyes & Co

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd Beale
    3rd Beds Direct
    4th Pownall Carpets
    5th Racing Green
    6th Vivi

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was Jewellery Catalogue rising 331 places to rank 86 (Index of 4.44).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 280, Gardiner Haskins
    Rising 263, Cutler and Gross
    Rising 262, Harvey Nichols
    Rising 227, Waterstone's
    Rising 217, JH Leeke & Son

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 21st May, in all we carried out 875,761,211 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally W Boyes & Co was top, H&M had the fastest response time with Klondyke Garden Centres reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st Zara UK
    2nd Acotis
    3rd JH Haskins & Sons
    4th The Works Holdings
    5th Superdrug

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q2/UK 500 Retail is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1115.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "UK Retail 500 Websites" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • Automation now in its 3rd Generation - is faster, more accurate and offers greater accountability. - 20 May 2015

    Version 9: Intelligent Assessment

    Please email us, sales@Sitemorse.com for the full paper.

    With the release of Version 9 we can now demonstrate the THIRD generation of services – managed services that support clients entire digital landscape and focus of the need for 20/20 Digital Vision™.V9 offers a significant step change how services covers a client digital landscape. By continually and intelligently assessing content, V9 provides far greater levels of automation - reducing the levels of manual integration and support considerably, reporting assessment and distribution goes from traditionally days to NIL, manual effort being eradicated.

    Our clients have benefitted from the unique, but essential service additions. Our INSIGHT offers knowledge and control, and support across the digital landscape, ensuring clients have confidence in all online operations;

    o MALWARE – continual assessment of links, not just on web and social pages but also across PDF, DOC, XLS and PPT assets that are online
    o PRIVACY – has there been an upload of documents containing personally identifiable information (PII)?
    o eDISCOVERY – we are not just assessing the content of web and mobile pages, but also reading PDF and office documents
    o Agile content approval

    The automation offer provides for far greater understanding of editorial capability – monitoring ALL content against a consistent set of rules, every page internally or external produced, web, mobile, and or social. All documents - every asset delivers consistently in the brand, this further reduces manual checking in the area of compliance and offers organisations options to further explore and employ agile working and content approval. Automation reduces lead time and removes manual inefficiency. Another benefit is reviewing and reporting against training– individual skill and capabilities can be assessed with training focused against specific requirements.

    publishing with accountability

    - Closing the loop
    There are a number of options available with V9 offering ‘Technology Augmentation’- integration to the varying service and systems clients already have in place (Brand and IP Protection, Asset and, Domain Management, Analytics, Content Management, Support and Ticketing) all traditionally have been stand alone in the past. With V9 Technology Augmentation we considerably remove the manual time (where errors can appear) and connect content production, making our workflow key to what establishes V9 as a THIRD generation service.

    Workflow automation ensures that regulatory, organisation and or web rules are underpinning any and all areas of content production. Considering a regulatory change or a service recall, this may start life in a legal area of the business but essentially all areas and service need to be aware of the change. Advising many editors, or external parties managing social and also ensuring they are consistently applied is probably not possible with current devolved services. V9 workflow brings this together effectively and efficiently.


    - Prioritisation is key
    Based on the rules (these can be divisional, local, property (web, social or mobile), country or globally – or any combination) anything that is likely to dilute brand or detract from Customer Experience, expose a compliance risk or effect search becomes an exception. It is then assessed automatically, looking at;

    o Likely impact
    o Value
    o Age
    o Frequency of change
    o Activity
    o Rank
    o Position

    Factors such as content owner and last author can also be considered, whether they are they currently available and based on reported exception what escalation needs to be applied, perhaps if they are absent.

    The specific detail then being provided to the individual who can make the change. Once completed this can then be reported as closed, and where the action is part of a compliance activity a consolidated report for audit purposes can be produced.

  • 2015 Q2/Swiss Banks : web benchmark : Banca Aletti & C. (Suisse) SA rises 132 - 19 May 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 8.77 is Banque Cramer & Cie SA http://www.banquecramer.ch/

    Screenshot of Banque Cramer & Cie SA

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd ZLB Zürcher Landbank
    3rd Bank J. Safra Sarasin Ltd
    4th LB (Swiss) Privatbank AG
    5th Thurgauer Kantonalbank
    6th acrevis Bank AG

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was Banca Aletti & C. (Suisse) SA rising 132 places to rank 40 (Index of 6.02).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 87, SIX SIS AG
    Rising 69, Bordier & Cie
    Rising 63, PostFinance
    Rising 60, Zurich Switzerland
    Rising 55, Ersparniskasse Affoltern i.E. AG

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 19th May, in all we carried out 63,600,784 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally Banque Cramer & Cie SA was top, Société Générale, Succursale de Zurich had the fastest response time with Banque Cramer & Cie SA reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st Gonet & Cie
    2nd E. Gutzwiller & Cie. Banquiers
    3rd Bank J. Safra Sarasin Ltd
    4th NPB Neue Privat Bank AG
    5th Banca del Sempione

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q2/Swiss Banks is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1114.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "Swiss Banks" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • Digital Disruption's Unglamourous Side: Digital Governance - 13 May 2015

    Extract from article on CMS Wire

    Most global enterprises look to digital transformation as the only way to remain competitive. They also view it as an opportunity to increase multi-channel customer engagement while reducing IT infrastructure costs.

    But some enterprises are slow to adapt to today’s technological evolution. While the idea of flying cars is a ways off, the idea of implementing cloud applications and big data analytics shouldn’t be just as far-fetched. A number of reasons explain why some still live in the offline ages, one of the bigger ones being lack of understanding. Why fix what isn't broke?

    Digital transformation isn't only about bringing companies into the second decade of the 21st century, although that’s as good a reason as any. Digital transformation can help businesses better interact and engage with their constituents.

    With these opportunities come some challenges. Company data, intellectual property and sensitive information are shared digitally and across various online networks by everyone from customers and clients to staff and senior executives. Corporate data should be looked at as information assets that contribute significantly to the valuation of organizations, but without the proper policies and tools in place, reining in and governing all that data is challenging, if not impossible.

    Digital Governance Challenge Accepted
    As companies accelerate their digital efforts, information will increasingly be communicated via social media, web content and mobile activities. The emergence of diverse digital tech in the workplace has drastically increased the possibility of breaches, leaks and other consequences as employees turn to online networks to share information with internal and external stakeholders.

    Third-party applications like Twitter, Facebook, Google Hangouts, Microsoft Lync, amongst others, present a challenge that executives need to address. While new technology and social media platforms have opened up opportunities to reach and engage employees, customers and clients, it has also become a hotbed for potential risks. These risks can affect everything from the company’s brand and reputation to more complicated legal, financial and security exposures.

    This is particularly true for companies who operate in multiple jurisdictions and must comply with multiple laws and regulations in highly-regulated markets. They need to ensure that their corporate information and the unstructured content from web, social and mobile activities are properly governed according to corporate, local and global policies.
    Capture and Preserve

    Transitioning from legacy communication systems to more diverse digital environments can be challenging. The web and social networks enable communication, make distance irrelevant and information is shared with ease. But there are consequences to this ease of sharing. Different social media uses must be considered in an information governance program. Whether generated from a company account or from a personal account used for business, the content must be treated as corporate information, governed under the same policies.

    Capturing and preserving internal enterprise social conversations should also be part of any company’s data management strategy. To ensure compliance with regulatory requirements, data policies and security needs, companies must implement a solution to allow for secure and efficient governance. Presumably, the majority of content generated through these tools is corporate data, and organizations must consider how this information should be governed as well. While information governance won’t protect the data entirely, it will help to ensure that the right people have the right access to the right data at the right time.

    Experiencing Déjŕ Vu?
    We’re slowing getting there. We faced similar issues with email about two decades ago (I am carbon dating myself). In the 90s, it was starting to become common for people to use their business email for personal communication. I remember an article that pleaded its readers to “at least spell check their email and use the same proper business etiquette as they do in letters.” It took a while for the email culture to evolve … and we’re still not there yet.

    In the past two decades, we have seen major litigations related to the misuse of email: gender discrimination, harassment, libel, etc. — litigations which many corporations are still reeling from. Take the Sony Pictures hack, for instance. Personal employee data, screenplays and emails were published online, or threatened to be published. This not only led to a public embarrassment of its top executives, one of whom had recently stepped down, but it also fueled a lawsuit against the company.

    We won’t dissect the mess this highly-popularized scandal created here, but it does show that no one and no company is safe. Should this prevent your business from joining the 21st century? No. Should it be heeded as a warning to have the proper policies in place? Absolutely.
    Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License Title image by Marcin Wichary

    About the Author
    Bassam Zarkout is the CTO of RSD a pioneer in information governance solutions, and has been leading the innovation, vision, creative strategy and architecture of RSD GLASS™. He is a thought leader in the information governance space (conception, design, development and implementation) and is a frequent speaker at key industry events.

  • UK companies 'need guidance on accessibility law' (E-Access Bulletin) - 08 May 2015

    UK companies need better guidance on digital accessibility law to help them understand their duties, according to a report from digital inclusion charity Citizens Online (http://www.citizensonline.org.uk).

    The UK's Equality Act 2010 is one of the furthest-reaching pieces of accessibility law in the world, but to date there has been no case law precedent set, the report finds. There has also been no significant pressure from government on service providers who do not make their websites, mobile apps, software, e-books or digital document formats accessible, it says.

    Download the report from http://www.citizensonline.org.uk/2015/04/call-for-education-encouragement-and-enforcement-from-digital-inclusion-charity/

    One problem is that the law's requirement for organisations to make "reasonable adjustments" to their digital services is open to interpretation, making it hard to mount a robust legal challenge against a service provider, the report says.

    "The law may need further elucidation to make clear what is and is not expected of companies and service providers in terms of compliance with standards and law", it says.

    Although national and international accessibility standards, guidelines and policies are well-established, published research suggests at least 80% of websites are still failing to meet minimum requirements for accessibility, the report finds.

    "The policy intentions are there, the standards, frameworks and technologies are there, the business case - compelling though not always totally straightforward - has been made.

    So why are accessibility levels so low?
    There seems to be little in the way of "teeth" to this issue, no case law precedent yet on web accessibility in the UK, and no significant pressure from government on service providers who do not make their sites or apps
    accessible," it says.

    The latest version of Citizen Online's pilot project Fix the Web is to be launched later in 2015, the charity says. The project aims to challenge inaccessible products and sites and "crowd-source" digital accessibility fixes.

  • Web accessibility @ Sharing Digital event - 06 May 2015

    Council Access: Web accessibility will be on the agenda at this year's local government "Share Digital" event, the new incarnation of the former annual "Building Perfect Council Websites" event run by the Society of IT Management (Socitm) with E-Access Bulletin publisher Headstar.

    accessibility SOCITM event

    This year's conference will be composed largely of best practice sharing sessions, where people developing digital local public services will be able to learn from their peers and other specialists.

    The event takes place on 9 July in central London:
    http://www.sharedigital.net

  • Selfridges highest climber in the UK drinks sites ranking, Apr.'15 - 30 Apr 2015

    Brought to you by Retail Insider and Sitemorse

    Logo-retail_insider

    - Top Ten Websites
    Bargain Booze
    Budgens
    The Whisky Shop
    Spar (UK)
    BEERmerchants.com
    Naked Wines
    Aldi
    EH Booth & Co
    Lidl
    The Drink Shop

    Full table online at http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1111/3f2198ca

    They might operate at different ends of the pricing spectrum but both F&M and Iceland suffered declines in their website’s performances in the table of the Top UK drinks sites in March, according to analysis undertaken exclusively for Retail Insider by online specialist Sitemorse.

    F&M slipped eight places to 19th spot with a score of 3.04 out of 10, which represents a sharp decline in its fortunes this year as it stood in third spot in January with a score of 5.72. However, its fall in March was beaten by Iceland that collapsed a hefty 15 places to sit in 20th spot.

    To produce the rankings Sitemorse runs automated software that page-by-page reads the first 125 pages of each website and analyses on the basis of six key criteria – function, code quality, user experience, accessibility, performance and SEO capability.

    The most improved site this month was Selfridges that climbed eight places to 14th spot with a score of 3.36 – recovering some of the four places it slipped in March. It still needs to make dramatic progress if it is to start challenging the top performers in the table, notably Bargain Booze that retained its position at the head of the table with a score of 7.20 (a slight decline on the 7.56 achieved in March).

    It stays just ahead of Budgens that again holds on to second spot, with The Whisky Shop switching places with Spar (UK) to move into third spot. Just behind them is BeerMerchants that moved up three places to take a coveted Top 5 spot.

    Worth a mention this month is Naked Wines that moved up three places to sixth spot in what has been a transformational month for the company, with the announcement that it is being taken over by Majestic Wine (sitting in 15th spot) and its founder Rowan Gormley is to take over as the CEO at Majestic.

    The beer, wines and spirits category online has made more modest gains this month (compared with February), with a month-on-month gain of 8% for March, according to the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index. This compares with an increase of 9% for combined online sales across all categories.

    Londis was yet again excluded from the Sitemorse testing this month because of its reliance on JavaScript.

    Sitemorse has been advising its clients about how to improve their web presence and deploy Digital Governance for more than a dozen years and its technical team have fine-tuned the Sitemorse software engine so that it is capable of doing far more than just helping find problems. The company offers true digital insight to many large and small organisations in public and private sectors, as well as publishing regular and unique INDEX benchmarks

    Top site @BargainBooze
    Climber @Selfridges
    Bottom XSunday Times Wine Club
    Faller @IcelandFoods

  • 2015 Q2/UK Police Forces : web benchmark : Warwickshire Police Force rises 20 - 16 Apr 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 7.26 is Civil Nuclear Constabulary http://www.cnc.police.uk/

    Screenshot of Civil Nuclear Constabulary

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd Essex Police
    3rd Cleveland Police
    4th Lincolnshire Police
    5th Surrey Police
    6th Lancashire Police

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was Warwickshire Police Force rising 20 places to rank 9 (Index of 5.53).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 19, Norfolk Constabulary
    Rising 11, Suffolk Constabulary
    Rising 6, Dorset Police
    Rising 6, Lancashire Police
    Rising 5, Hampshire Constabulary

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 16th April, in all we carried out 35,543,417 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally Civil Nuclear Constabulary was top, Cleveland Police had the fastest response time with North Wales Police reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st Thames Valley Police
    2nd Civil Nuclear Constabulary
    3rd Bedfordshire Police
    4th Staffordshire Police
    5th National Crime Agency

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q2/UK Police is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1112.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "UK Police Forces" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • Protect your brand against the rise of malware attacks using Sitemorse - 16 Apr 2015

    An organisation’s web presence is now so important that it’s worrying to see that five out of six large global companies were targeted with malware last year.

    The latest Internet Security Threat Report from cyber security firm Symantec ranked the UK second globally for targeted attacks in 2014, and top in Europe. Almost two thirds of all targeted attacks struck small and medium-size businesses (SMBs), putting not only them but their business partners and customers at higher risk.

    According to the Symantec report, attackers continue to breach networks with highly targeted ‘spear-phishing’ attacks, which increased eight percent overall in 2014. Attackers also perfected ‘watering hole’ exploits, making each attack more selective by infecting legitimate websites, monitoring site visitors and targeting only the companies they wanted to attack.

    Website servers can be attacked by malware just like desktop PCs. Compromising legitimate websites and using them to infect visitors is an increasingly popular tactic for online criminals.

    Site owners are often unaware their site has been compromised until it is blacklisted by search engines or complaints are received from site users. The damage to reputation and customer trust can be enormous.

    It’s not just large companies that are affected by this problem; small- and medium-sized businesses saw attacks increasing 26 percent and 30 percent respectively in 2014.

    One of the recommendations of the security report warns web owners they should scan their web presence daily for malware. Site owners can help protect themselves and their valuable brands against this kind of problem by using the services provided by Sitemorse.

    Sitemorse continually reviews your digital landscape (web, social and mobile properties) and the assets within to check for and alert you to any instances of malware - this also includes social media posts, reading every link and sending SMS or email to you highlighting you to malware or spyware.

    We offer continual content assessment across your web, social and mobile pages, along with reviewing the detail within PDFs, Word / Excel or PowerPoint files - saving time and removing the tedium and efficiency of manual checking.

    Our site monitoring is not only continually checking for page availability and alerting against performance, accessibility, brand or quality issues, but is also continually reading actual page content and will immediately trigger a warning email or text message to site managers if there is a DNS change, if key attributes are noticed as missing or if there is a significant change of overall content, something that might indicate malicious activity.

    The full 119-page threat report from Symantec can be downloaded by registering from http://www.symantec.com/security_response/publications/threatreport.jsp

    malware scanning and protection from sitemorse


    More about Sitemorse

    Sitemorse has been around for well over a decade, and we were the first in the market to supply a service helping clients to have “web confidence” that their online presence was working well and offering a great customer experience.

    The online world these days is much more fast-moving, with increasing complexity, competition, and regulation.

    Our uniquely clever Sitemorse software engine can make easy work of analysing your digital content, and gives you 20;20 digital vision, pointing you straight to the things you need to change to make sure you are continually improving.

    Whatever industry or public sector niche you are in, our powerful quarterly INDEX reports will show you just where you stand in relation to your peers.

    We are so confident that our services can help you that we will give you complimentary access to your organisations reports, so you can see for yourself how your online assets compare with your peers.

  • Dobbies delivers best performing garden centre website in Q1 ahead of Easter peak - 31 Mar 2015

    Dobbies topped the table of the best performing websites in the garden centre category that places it in a healthy position as it hits the peak period of the year, according to the latest quarterly testing undertaken by specialist Sitemorse.

    glynn davis picture
    By Glynn Davis

    When testing the UK’s top 500 retail websites in Q1 Dobbies performed best in its sector with a score of 6.57 out of 10 that places it well ahead of major rival Wyevale Garden Centres that managed to score a lesser 4.46.

    The testing of the 500 sites is undertaken by Sitemorse using automated software that, page-by-page reads the first 125 pages of each retailer’s sites to generate a ranked table based on checks to Quality, User Experience, Accessibility, Performance and SEO capability of each of the websites.

    Among the 11 garden centre websites tested Haskins delivered the second best score, with a creditable 5.48, and was followed by DJ Squire & Co and then Klondyke Garden Centres with 4.91. These scores sit well with those achieved by retailers in other sectors.

    It is interesting to note that three of the top five sites are transactional, which is impressive when considering that this is a category that does not typically have a high level of online sales versus store revenues.

    Regardless of whether they are transactional or not all these top five garden centre retailers clearly recognise the benefit of keeping a well maintained online presence that reflects well on their brands – across all channels.

    This will be especially vital over the Easter period when they are all seeking to capitalise on the surge in demand for garden-related goods – which could make or break their whole year.

    About Sitemorse:

    Sitemorse has been advising its clients about how to improve their web presence for more than a dozen years now, and its clever technical team have fine-tuned the powerful Sitemorse software engine so that it is capable of doing far more than just help find problems.

    Hundreds of clients across major corporates, local and national government, utilities, financials and the health sector rely on Sitemorse to help them improve the performance, compliance and quality of their online assets, web, mobile and social.

    The company offers true digital insight to many large and small organisations in public and private sectors, as well as publishing regular unique INDEX benchmarks spotlighting the true online leaders in a number of sectors, from London-listed blue chips to universities, central government to consumer finance providers.

    Online at www.theretailbulletin.com

  • Changing world but consumer demands remain consistent - 30 Mar 2015

    Changing world but consumer demands remain consistent - consider the integration of Sitemorse to your content platform.

    By Glynn Davis on March 29, 2015 in Technology

    consistency for commerce_world

    The over-arching demand is for convenience. From Australia to China via Russia they all want shopping to be an always-on, cross-border, limitless retail marketplace. A key driver behind this trend is technology as this is what consumers believe will deliver their ideal ‘converged commerce’ experience.

    Canvassing 500 individuals from 10 countries the ‘Retail Without Limits – Modern Commercial Society’ report from Oracle found a whopping 83% of people want retailers to invest in technology in order that this converged commerce desire becomes a reality.

    This is because these consumers want to be able to trade across borders – 56% have already done so – and 70% say they want to be able to easily access information from this global marketplace about products and services ahead of purchasing.

    This taps into that other global desire – greater transparency, which encompasses the issue of privacy. Care clearly has to be taken here because although 56% of consumers recognise the need to give personal information to retailers in order that their online shopping experience can be improved, as many as 55% of people have reservations or disagree with retailers having access to personal information. This is definitely something of a conundrum for merchants in this increasingly data-driven world.

    For these global consumers convenience and converged commerce is underpinned by mobile. The report found that this is the fastest growing method of shopping in all countries, with 67% of people stating they are using smart-phones and other mobile devices to enhance their shopping experience.

    But despite the utilising of such devices in the shopping journey consumers from around the world are still united in their appetite for the physical store. As many as 44% of people prefer to shop in-store and take their items home – this is highest in Australia where 69% of consumers expressed a preference for this type of retailing.

    While there are major challenges for retailers adapting to today’s digitally driven marketplace the fact that the desires of consumers has become more homogenised presents an undoubted international opportunity for the more progressive and ambitious operators.

    http://www.retailinsider.com/2015/03/changing-world-but-consumer-demands-remain-consistent.html

  • 2015 Q1/Global Top 250 Retailers : web benchmark : The Game Group rises 97 - 27 Mar 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 6.28 is Grupo Jerónimo Martins http://www.biedronka.pl/

    Screenshot of Grupo Jerónimo Martins

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd ICA AB
    3rd Otto Group
    4th Rewe-Zentral
    5th Spar Group
    6th Uny (Apita)

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was The Game Group rising 97 places to rank 56 (Index of 3.70).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 86, RaceTrac Petroleum
    Rising 84, Lowe's Companies
    Rising 77, OfficeMax
    Rising 76, Office Depot
    Rising 72, DCM Japan Holdings

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 27th March, in all we carried out 389,280,203 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB was top, Next had the fastest response time with SuperValu reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st Lotte Shopping
    2nd Inditex S.A
    3rd Defense Commissary Agency
    4th B&Q
    5th SuperValu

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q1/Global 250 Retailers is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1107.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "Global Top 250 Retailers" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • Back up your purchasing decisions with our independent Vendor Verification Index - 24 Mar 2015

    If you are in the market for a new CMS or agency, our latest benchmark will help with your decision making process.

    With so many options, and competing claims from vendors, how can you shortlist the best to not only meet requirements but also justify your final decision to budget holders?

    With this in mind, Sitemorse has developed a new benchmark called Vendor Verification. The benchmark offer an independent way to review and rate web agencies and Content Management Systems (CMS), with a comparison based on real deployments. For example, does the CMS (in live operation) prevent accessibility errors and broken links, and does it match up to quoted claims?

    Sitemorse CEO Lawrence Shaw commented: “With an enormous range of products on the market for managing websites, the one thing that is often lacking for web managers is a comparison. They have been able to talk to their own contacts to get an idea of what has worked for others, but the market has been lacking a truly independent verification of the various claims being made.

    “Our real-world testing will be able to offer good advice on what the best products are available to support web managers and can back it up with evidence” he added.
    If you manage a website in the public or private sector, we’d like to find out more about which content management system or external agency you use and in return we’ll provide full access to Vendor Verification.

    Email sales@Sitemorse.com to request your sector example, or discuss which sites can be reviewed to assist you.

    Example of vendor verfication - ranking

  • 2015 Q1/UK Central Government : web benchmark : Service Personnel and Veterans Agency rises 193 - 20 Mar 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 8.68 is Met Office http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/

    Screenshot of Met Office

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd Office for National Statistics
    3rd The Pensions Regulator
    4th Valuation Office Agency
    5th Legal Services Commission
    6th Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED)

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was Service Personnel and Veterans Agency rising 193 places to rank 19 (Index of 6.84).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 185, Independent Reconfiguration Panel
    Rising 144, Construction Industry Training Board
    Rising 141, Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency
    Rising 110, Legal Services Commission
    Rising 106, Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED)

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 20th March, in all we carried out 182,945,477 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally Central Arbitration Committee was top, Government Art Collection had the fastest response time with House of Lords Appointments Commission reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC)
    2nd Veterinary Medicines Directorate
    3rd Natural England
    4th Technology Strategy Board
    5th Independent Reconfiguration Panel

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q1/UK Central Gov. is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1104.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "UK Central Government" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • 2015 Q1/Global Life Sciences : web benchmark : NPS Pharmaceuticals rises 133 - 19 Mar 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 7.94 is Biogen Idec http://www.biogenidec.com/

    Screenshot of Biogen Idec

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd Neurocrine Biosciences
    3rd Kyowa Hakko Kirin UK
    4th Cytogen
    5th Otsuka Pharmaceuticals Europe
    6th Kaken Pharmaceutical

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was NPS Pharmaceuticals rising 133 places to rank 96 (Index of 4.12).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 111, Nissan Chemical
    Rising 97, Jazz Pharmaceuticals
    Rising 81, Impax Laboratories
    Rising 62, Fresenius Medical Care
    Rising 59, Advaxis

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 19th March, in all we carried out 93,903,186 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally Biogen Idec was top, Merz UK had the fastest response time with Kyorin Holdings reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st Apotex
    2nd Otsuka Pharmaceuticals Europe
    3rd Maxygen
    4th Orion Pharma
    5th Hikma Pharmaceuticals

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q1/Global Life Sci. is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1106.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "Global Life Sciences" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • White paper: 4 steps to efficient digital operations management (Amaze) - 13 Mar 2015

    White paper: 4 steps to efficient digital operations management

    Essential Read - White Paper from Amanda Follit / Amaze


    Digital Governance thoughts

    There is a growing gap between the growth of digital operations and the frameworks put in place to manage them. This new whitepaper from Amaze outlines the key elements for success to create order from digital chaos.

    The white paper, ‘Driving competitive advantage through efficient digital operations management’ identifies how businesses can more efficiently manage their digital estates to increase competitiveness and ultimately improve customer experience in a fast paced digital economy.

    The white paper examines the gap between the growth of digital operations and the frameworks put in place to manage them.

    This has been highlighted by recent research, which revealed that only 10% of organisations with a very centralised decision making process in digital report a ‘strong, shared sense of purpose and identity’, whereas 50% of organisations with a distributed decision making process report a ‘strong, shared sense of purpose and identity’.

    The white paper also explores the dangers poor digital operations management can expose organisations to, highlights that digital operations management is not only possible, but vital, and outlines the key elements for success to create order from digital chaos.

    The four steps to success in a digital management journey are summarised as follows:

    1. Digital operations maturity – how ready are you?

    The first step in any digital operations management framework should be to measure an organisation’s capability to manage its digital footprint.

    There is no escaping the fact that the maturity of a business’ digital operation matters, regardless of industry or size, and implementing a continuous means of monitoring and improving the capabilities of an organisation to manage its digital estate is vital.

    2. Digital governance – turning data into meaningful intelligence

    Digital governance is not just about who has the authority to add and remove content to websites and social media accounts and having a chain of command in place to ensure no unauthorised activity takes place. Though this is key, having a roadmap that clearly defines roles and responsibilities for managing a digital presence is only one point in the triangle of governance.

    3. Becoming ‘data detectives’ to drive operational change in digital management

    Evaluating and reporting on digital operations management KPIs to highlight areas for improvement and inform future optimisation of the digital estate and its operation is, by majority, an untapped area that can give insights and help gain competitive advantage.

    4. Tailored training – context not content

    The final piece in the digital operations management puzzle, and key to ensuring that processes are continuously monitored and improving, is implementing structured training.

    Commenting on the white paper’s insights, Amanda Follit, head of digital operations services at Amaze, says: “At Amaze we firmly believe that organisations are standing on the threshold of a new era in maximizing efficiency through digital operations management and driving even better customer experience through digital effectiveness. Improving digital operations management is absolutely vital to this and understanding how a brand’s web presence is being managed is not only possible, it is necessary for success.

    “A shift in perspective is needed from businesses, looking at digital operations management.

    Those organisations that understand the efficiencies of digital operations management as a key tool in their arsenal will gain significant advantage over those don’t.”

    Download Amanda's paper

  • 2015 Q1/UK London-listed PLCs : web benchmark : Costain Group PLC rises 296 - 12 Mar 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 8.88 is Marstons PLC http://www.marstons.co.uk/

    Screenshot of Marstons PLC

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd St. Modwen Properties PLC
    3rd Carpetright PLC
    4th Land Securities Group PLC
    5th Law Debenture Corporation PLC
    6th Berkeley Group Holdings

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was Costain Group PLC rising 296 places to rank 44 (Index of 6.28).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 269, Lancashire Holdings LD
    Rising 249, Moss Bros Group PLC
    Rising 245, Mears Group PLC
    Rising 224, Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group PLC
    Rising 217, Amec Foster Wheeler PLC

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 12th March, in all we carried out 335,724,285 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally St. Modwen Properties PLC was top, Admiral Group PLC had the fastest response time with Marstons PLC reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st Wpp PLC
    2nd Land Securities Group PLC
    3rd Marstons PLC
    4th Berkeley Group Holdings
    5th Imperial Tobacco Group PLC

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q1/London-listed PLCs is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1103.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "UK London-listed PLCs" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • 2015 Q1/UK Local Government : web benchmark : Telford & Wrekin rises 294 - 04 Mar 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 9.14 is Scottish Borders http://www.scotborders.gov.uk/

    Screenshot of Scottish Borders

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd Bournemouth
    3rd Slough
    4th Knowsley
    5th Vale of Glamorgan
    6th Wellingborough

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was Telford & Wrekin rising 294 places to rank 78 (Index of 5.78).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 260, Pendle
    Rising 257, Croydon
    Rising 239, Broadland
    Rising 233, South Ribble
    Rising 214, Durham

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 4th March, in all we carried out 323,344,788 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally Scottish Borders was top, Rushcliffe had the fastest response time with Pendle reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st North Devon
    2nd Wigan
    3rd Woking
    4th Chichester
    5th Worthing

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q1/UK Local Gov. is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1102.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "UK Local Government" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • 2015 Q1/UK Consumer Finance : web benchmark : Teachers Building Society rises 128 - 27 Feb 2015

    Top site this quarter with an Index of 7.48 is Nemo Personal Finance http://www.nemo-loans.co.uk/

    Screenshot of Nemo Personal Finance

    The next top five sites are listed below:
    2nd Intelligent Finance
    3rd Airdrie Savings Bank
    4th BM Savings
    5th Duncan Lawrie Bank
    6th Dudley Building Society

    The site that demonstrated the greatest improvement was Teachers Building Society rising 128 places to rank 40 (Index of 5.28).

    The next five most improved sites are listed below:
    Rising 104, Scottish Widows Investment
    Rising 91, Greenhill & Co
    Rising 87, Darlington Building Society
    Rising 87, Secure Trust Bank Plc
    Rising 85, Coventry Building Society

    The reviewing and subsequent benchmarking of the sites was completed on 27th February, in all we carried out 84,260,878 checks - testing function, checking compliance and measuring performance - reviewing the page content, code and delivery infrastructure. Functionally The Money Shop was top, One Account had the fastest response time with Julian Hodge Bank reporting the best HTML 'code quality'.

    The top sites for accessibility were:
    1st Julian Hodge Bank
    2nd Intelligent Finance
    3rd Duncan Lawrie Bank
    4th Liffe Investor
    5th DNB Norbank

    The full results and access to the Sitemorse INDEX, 2015 Q1/UK Consumer Finance is available at: http://www.sitemorse.com/rt/1101.

    Sitemorse INDEX

    HOW? Using our software we look at each site individually, mapping out every combination of every one of the top 125 pages and complete around 1,200 tests, checks and measures across User Experience (UX), Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) and Search Capability (SEO). Against the results, our benchmarking methodology is applied to provided a ranked table - the results are then published as the "UK Consumer Finance" INDEX.

    WHY? The quarterly INDEX Website Review looks at major public and private sectors as the independent benchmark identifying how websites are performing, meeting compliance levels and satisfying their users. It's also a key indicator for website managers who, while always wanting to be at the top of their game, could be hampered by poor-performing suppliers, non-compliant legacy content or content management systems that often fail to spot errors affecting user experience.

    Our services provide you with true 'digital insight', ceaselessly monitoring your online content and pointing you to areas that could be potential problems for you, your clients, and your stakeholders.

    Needing no installation or involvement from your in-house IT teams, our services will run alongside your content management systems:

    - Helping make your customer journeys good ones, leaving your clients and online contacts wanting to come back.
    - Keeping you always ahead of the curve on the latest online legislation that could affect you.
    - Protecting your organisation and your web users from online threats.

    We offer a confidential internal 'company wide' website testing and benchmarking service - allowing you to review the position of all the sites in your organisation. Contact us to find out more.

  • Service update - Forwarding a Snapshot - 23 Feb 2015

    We've made a small change to the Snapshot interface that makes the existing "forward" feature more visually appealing - as seen in the attached screenshot.

    The form is opened by clicking "Forward this Snapshot to a Friend" on any Snapshot.

    As before, an email is sent after the form is completed with a link to the Snapshot (they do not have to be a Sitemorse user to receive and view a forwarded Snapshot).

    Snapshot - forward option

    Snapshot offers immediate page checking, ensuring every new, or updated page delivers great UX (user experience), meets GRC (governance, risk and compliance requirements [accessibility etc]) as well as having what it needs in place for great SEO (content, performance, headings).

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