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Excel in the digital arena

At WUA we want to help businesses organize the very best digital experience across all digital touchpoints and all customer journeys within these touchpoints. We believe that this can only be achieved by benchmarking and optimizing at customer journey level. Together with our customers we spend every day working on the most comprehensive, high-quality digital experience benchmark in the world to support our customers with their digital roadmap. Every study that we conduct makes our benchmark more valuable, and our customers benefit from that on a daily basis.

Free eBook: The Digital Excellence Challenge

The Digital Excellence Challenge. Last year, we held 23 in-depth interviews with the winners of our benchmark studies. What do they have in common? What is their secret? What are the most important challenges they face? What is their magic formula to excel in digital? What can you learn from them?

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Latest News & Rankings

CompareTheMarket.com wins digital customer experience study car insurance UK

AMSTERDAM – UK consumers favour CompareTheMarket.com the most when it comes to online orientation on car insurance. This is the outcome of the latest WUA digital customer experience study which was carried out independently among n=200 potential customers in the UK car insurance market in January 2017. In the previous study, which was carried out in May 2015, CompareTheMarket.com was also the winner.

Potential customers in the UK market were instructed to go online to look for a car insurance policy. Which providers do they encounter? Which parties are found? Do they continue their customer journey on a website, or do they give up? Why do they continue, and why do they give up? Which parties get preference? What do potential customers like about the order process, and what do they dislike?

>>> For the complete ranking and more insights download the free example report.

Ranking Digital Sales Scan Car Insurance UK January 2017

With this study, WUA maps out the entire UK car insurance market from potential customers’ perspectives. CompareTheMarket.com is the winner of this study with a WPS-score of 74. MoneySuperMarket.com and Gocompare.com get second and third place with 67 points each, followed by Confused.com in 4th place with 64 points. The number 1 CompareTheMarket.com has the highest findability (59%), followed by the number 2 MoneySuperMarket.com and the number 3 Gocompare.com (both 55%). The other providers are found by 42% or less.

The number 1 CompareTheMarket.com was picked by 30% of respondents as their first choice, followed by the number 2 MoneySuperMarket.com, which was first choice for 12% of respondents. For 11% the number 4 Confused.com was their first choice, and the number 5 DirectLine.com was first choice for 10% of respondents. The other providers were put in first place by 7% or lower.

Is your organization active in the car insurance market?

Download the preview report with a selection of interesting benchmark numbers from this online orientation-research into taking out a car insurance. Know where you stand compared to the competition and see which party scores best on the most important elements in the customer journey!

  • Theme scores per provider on Look & Feel, offer and Brand

  • Conversion: visibility and preference

  • 10 profound insights from the research

Download

The complete report Digital Sales Scan Car Insurance January 2017 is a unique tailor-made report including all scores and recommendations and gives direct insight into how to optimize the customer experience and increase conversions.

  • Know where you stand relative to consumer expectations and the experience that others in the market deliver

  • Know your most important improvements and highest priorities for conversion optimization

  • Learn from best practices within and outside the industry and learn from the best

5 interesting insights: Who gets the highest preference?

This study shows once again that Digital Excellence is an absolute necessity. To beat the competition, you have to offer an excellent digital experience in the entire customer journey, and take the number 1 position in preference. Being found and scoring high in Google isn’t good enough. Below are 5 interesting insights from the study:

  1. The providers in the top 3 were second choice for 13% to 18% of respondents, and third choice for 10% to 17%. For example, the number 3 Gocompare.com was first choice for just 7% of respondents. However, 18% of respondents picked this provider as their second choice, and 17% picked it as their third choice. Relatively little effort is required to get preference from these groups of consumers as well.
  2. There is a gap of 13 percentage points in findability between the top 3 and the other providers (42% or lower). Then there is another gap between the number 5 DirectLine.com (38%) and the number 6 Aviva.co.uk (19%).
  3. The number 1 CompareTheMarket.com has by far the highest conversion (51%), followed by the number 6 Aviva.co.uk (30%) and the number 5 DirectLine.com and the number 4 Confused.com (both 25%).
  4. Aviva.co.uk has a relatively low findability of 19%, but this provider has the second highest conversion (30%). The number 7 Churchill.com has the second lowest findability (17%) and the fifth highest conversion (24%). This shows that the few people who managed to find these providers were positive about them.
  5. The number 3 Gocompare.com goes the other way. It has the second highest (55%), but in terms of conversion it reaches seventh place (13%). A similar pattern emerges for the number 2 MoneySuperMarket.com, which also has a findability of 55% and a relatively low conversion of 21%.
>>> More insights and theme scores can be read in the preview report. Download it here for free.

Aim of this study

The aim of the study is to precisely identify the digital experience of consumers, when they search for a car insurance policy, who they choose to buy from, and especially: why. Using a proven model WUA has worked on over the past eight years, we map out what it is exactly exactly that consumers want, what the best practices are, and what the areas of improvement are. The following websites were assessed by consumers in the study:

  • Aviva.co.uk
  • Churchill.com
  • CompareTheMarket.com
  • Confused.com
  • DirectLine.com
  • Gocompare.com
  • MoneySuperMarket.com
  • uSwitch.com

Who can benefit from this study?

In the study, WUA’s online experts reveal problem areas and areas for improvement on all topics based on the Digital Sales Scan model. For each provider, conclusions and concrete recommendations are provided in a tailor-made report. At WUA we know that in order to achieve digital excellence, it is extremely important that the following people and departments are involved with / benefit from this study:

  • Everyone who is commercially responsible: The winner takes it all.
  • Management: for the right direction and mindset
  • Online marketing professionals: get started immediately with the recommendations for higher conversion.
  • Research: Thorough research with validated model is the foundation for digital success.
  • Proposition/marketing: In addition to Look & Feel, the Product Offer and Brand topics are key factors in the buying process.

The level of cooperation of the above stakeholders can make or break digital success!

Please contact Marjolein van Ballegooij, our online expert for this research, and discover how WUA can help you with your digital challenges.

+31 20 531 97 10

Contact Us

Marjolein van Ballegooij

Marjolein van Ballegooij works as Head of Research at WUA! with special attention to the sectors Banking & Insurance.

  • Customer Journey

The Customer Journey and the Role of Benchmarking

The customer journey is the route a consumer takes to reach their goal. This goal could for example be the purchase of a product, solving a problem with a service, or finding information. Companies have become increasingly interested in consumers’ experiences and perceptions during this journey.

Opportunities for growth and loyalty are created through a better understanding of what consumers encounter during their ‘journey’, what they find pleasant, what causes them to give up, and where decision points are located. Service, according to an increasing number of digital professionals, is actually the new sales…

The Digital Sales Journey

The customer journey often starts online. In this orientation phase, the consumer goes online to find information to become more familiar with the product, for example. Here, they encounter various parties who provide what they are looking for, and develop a preference for a particular provider. The tremendous yearly growth of online spending shows that Dutch consumers often complete their purchases online. In 2015, Dutch consumers spent 8.41 billion on product purchases; 21.9% more than in 2014. Spending on services such as travel and event tickets, shows a growth of 10.3%. (source: gfk.com, Thuiswinkel Markt Monitor research)

Especially in online, an optimally organised customer journey on the website is key. After all, for the consumer a different ‘store’ is just one click away. If you want to keep a consumer happy on your website and convert them, you have to at least offer them a clear journey without obstacles that slow them down (e.g. unclear visual navigation, too much information, irrelevant information, an unreliable impression, or technical issues). Companies often get it wrong still, which is evident from the fact that many have low conversion rates hovering around 1%. Unbelievable, really: there are 100 consumers in your store, and 99 of them leave without buying anything.

To get the journey in order, usability tests, A/B testing, and pop-up questionnaires on the website offer a solution. But what is often overlooked, is that a consumer’s digital journey often doesn’t start and end with a visit to a single store. Natural behaviour would be visiting multiple websites by Googling keywords, entering company names directly into the address bar in the browser, or visiting comparison sites.

No matter how well-designed a usability test may be, you won’t know if you’re actually scoring well until you know what is happening within the competitive environment. What do people experience on all these different websites with respect to one another? What makes consumers prefer one but not the other? Which aspects of the customer journey take priority when it comes to improving?

The Digital Service Journey

These days, the optimal organisation of online self-service is considered to be almost as important as the online sales journey. By allowing consumers to answer their questions themselves online, make changes, or manage an account, there is a ‘win’ on both sides. Companies can reduce their service centre costs and thus achieve higher margins, and consumers can get to work whenever it suits them. Without having to worry about office hours, waiting times, and menus. Our own WUA! studies show that more than 70% of consumers want to be able to deal with service-related issues themselves online. And this percentage is increasing rapidly. In order to optimally organise self-service online (think app and the My-environment within websites), it is fascinating to find out what is the standard in the world around the consumer. This standard is determined by the best in class – that is the bar the consumer will set for you.

The role and value of benchmarking

Comparing digital sales and service journeys is something we do on a daily basis at WUA!. Together with our customers, we are building the best digital experience benchmark in the world. In our view, it is rather illogical NOT to compare consumers’ experiences on your website to their experiences on the websites of the competition. This comparison is what we call benchmarking, and we don’t just do this for customer sales journeys, but service journeys as well. When we look at service journeys, we can see that service level expectations are increasing: that is a big challenge!

Contact one of our online experts now and find out how WUA can help you with your digital challenges.

+31 20 531 97 10

Contact Us

Marjolein van Ballegooij

Marjolein van Ballegooij works as Head of Research at WUA! with special attention to the sectors Banking & Insurance.

  • Paul Wassenaar

Paul Wassenaar (Justlease.nl): “We want to bring ultimate freedom to automobility!”

Leasen.nl is the big favourite with consumers who are trying to find a private lease car, according to this recent WUA Tracker study in The Netherlands. Paul Wassenaar is a manager at Justlease.nl, which Leasen.nl belongs to as part of Terberg Leasing. A talk about the customer as king, the best mobility solution, A* organisation, and electric bicycles.

Congratulations, Paul Wassenaar! You are the winner of this WUA online orientation study of private lease cars. How important is it for you to be the best?
“Very important, you can’t offer the best solution for the end user if you aren’t the best yourself. We want to bring ultimate freedom to automobility. If that’s not something you have in mind, you will automatically remain mediocre, stuck in the middle, and then at some point it’s game over. So I think it is important to be the best, because it is the only way to make the difference.

“When we started with private lease, Noordlease and MijnDomein were our two competitors. I have a lot of respect for them, they moved towards private lease before we did. We took a very good look at them, but we also wondered how we could be distinctive. And then… you need to actually make the difference. We chose, for example, to go all out on online, whereas others maintain large physical stores. We are now market leader, and need to look at what will be the next step in our entrepreneurship.

“With cars, a lot of costs are involved when it comes to the period between the car leaving the factory and it getting to the consumer. Cars are transported, they are stored somewhere, there is overproduction. They are distributed across different countries, there’s an import house involved. Then they go to a dealer. No-one is happy to foot the bill for this. I can only be the best by breaking through that entire chain and say, just like the Airbnb method: away with almost everything between house and customer in order to achieve equality.”

You scored highest of all providers. What is going well at Leasen.nl?
“Here at Justlease.nl there are three main objectives we focus on every single day. The first is A* organisation. The second is rate of return, and the third is numbers. These numbers are the result of everything that precedes that’s going well. We have got a stable growth path now, and we’re not willing to let that go. We have noticed that by now, 60 percent of our customers no longer come to us via a search engine. They come to us directly through recommendations from friends or family.”

What is the role of customer research and customer focus in your daily work?
“We’ve divided our organisation into squads and tribes, and we have 5 teams, each of which focuses on something that is important to the customer. The way we do customer research and how we look at it will grow along with the WUA! research model. Themes such as Brand and Look & Feel (see also: the WUA! WPS model, MvdB) are important for Justlease.nl as we develop further as an organisation. What we learn from the WUA! studies is that you don’t have to be a big company in order to have a very reliable brand. You also don’t need a lot of brand awareness to be a very reliable brand. So you see: the online game is very different from traditional marketing. You learn much faster, the pace of development is higher. But you must be open to customer feedback, the numbers, and the underlying data.

“We have a customer panel of 300 people and we regularly ask them questions, and we are the only leasing company that has a mobile app as a central service body. The app on your phone is more important than the car you drive. We also do customer research on the new business side. We hold group discussions with WUA!, which is qualitative research. But we also have feedback tools and polls on the site, we do a lot of A/B testing, we are continuously making the data and analytics work for us.

“Once you are one of our customers, our service apparel starts running. As a customer, you are going to experience so much in the next 4 years. From damage repairs to bad luck on holiday. We gauge each process, and every department is responsible for it. We see, also in the teams that are working on the site and developing the app behind the scenes, that making choices is increasingly about the added value for the customer. Do things that customers are waiting for, focus on the things that are really relevant for the customer!”

What is your biggest digital challenge?
“The core of our challenge is to overcome the assumptions and ignorance surrounding Private Lease. Once people are in contact with us, we score very well. Digitally it is difficult to establish this contact. We only work digitally and online, and we’re creating a new automotive market which, to date, has always been offline. Orientation may be done online, but buying a car is something many people still do offline. You buy from a dealer, at sales shows, maybe you feel it’s necessary to test drive a car before you buy it. Private lease is relatively new. People are cognitively dissonant. The product ‘private lease’ should be taken into consideration much more often: I will either lease or buy. Or I’m going to either lease or finance. If you are financially driven and calculate what a car with everything that goes with it actually costs, I can convince you.

“We have, quite simply, the best mobility solution in the Netherlands. In terms of organisation, service, price-wise, in terms of online search experience. In this respect, at the moment we are still using a bit of a generalist approach with broad Adwords campaigns, for example. We need to be present where the needs are, also offline. So we need to be there when you take your car to the garage and are presented with a huge bill. Do you go for the repair, or do you order a car from us following the principle of ‘order today = drive tomorrow’?

“People think you also have additional tax on private leases. That causes us problems, yes. If you’re driving a lease car, the AFM thinks it’s financed. And we suffer from that. We view it as a rental, which is legally true. However, the AFM sees it as a financial liability for the longer term and that is actually true. Then you see that people like you, Matthijs, will continue to use a 10 year old diesel because they think it means they’ll have less financial burden. That’s not the case, go on and calculate it. The risk of driving an older car is much greater, because you will probably need a lot of repairs. A small repair can easily cost as much as 1000 euros. Where does that money come from? Your savings account, if you have one. As a result, there will be other things you can’t pay for. For us the challenge is finding a happy medium for consumers.”

How do you view service in relation to sales? Could service eventually become the new sales in your industry?
“I want new customers to get confirmation from existing customers that we are the right party with a very good product. As I said before, this is true for more than sixty percent of new customers. This means you generate more sales, it makes sense. But at the same time, the core of a family business is that you remain family. If customers experience any problems, looking for a solution is the very first thing we do. No matter what.”

“Ultimately, as a company you just CANNOT deliver a bad product. A bad product will affect your new business and retention. You can say, however, that you offer the lowest price, and as a result you have to compromise, meaning that consumers do not get EVERYTHING another company may be able to provide at a higher price. But you can’t say: you’ll get this or that, and then fail to deliver. Online you will be hung from the highest tree.

“So, we are more like Coolblue than bol.com. Coolblue says: every experience you have with us has to be perfect. Ultimately, in the long term you’re shooting yourself in the foot if you do it wrong. Bol.com collaborates with external parties, and three times in a row I experienced bad delivery. It arrived late, they couldn’t find the parcel, and so on. Coolblue take care of the delivery themselves with their blue vans. That’s what we do: we have our own cars with registration and stock, with our own transport through our own system, and you can come and pick up your car from us, here in Utrecht. We have everything under control.”

So… with this level of control, can you enforce an A* service experience within your organisation?
“Yes! Our delivery of cars gets a 9.6 out of 10 with an NPS of 73! Every Saturday, it’s one big party here (the delivery day of the lease cars, MvdB). You don’t want to leave that to someone else, do you? It’s also possible to get the car delivered to your house. We were the first leasing company with a Thuiswinkel quality mark, haha!”

Are there any cool things in the making at Leasen.nl within your focus area? What (digital) innovations are you working on?
“We have just started leasing bicycles as well, we’re focusing on the electrical segment. We are now offering an electric bicycle for 40-50 euros per month. We also offer a little trip registration device for 3 euros per month. And you can call us for restaurant tips, the best garages, or where to fill up cheaply. We are making your trip more enjoyable this way. Our slogan is: ‘Dat is slim geregeld’ (‘That’s cleverly arranged’). I want to service the entire Netherlands and relieve all auto stress for everyone.

“In digital we have taken a massive step, but it needs to be even better. At brand level, we first had business lease, then private lease, and now we’ve added bicycle lease. We have an ever-expanding range of products, and the challenge is to structure the Justlease.nl brand well online too. The question is what the mobility market will look like in 10 years. What I do know, is that we are going to put our mark on it with Justlease.nl. We don’t care how, as long as it is the best solution for the consumer!”

Download the free ebook The Digital Excellence Challenge with:

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  • Over 84 pages filled with strategies, approaches, tactics, and inspiration to excel in digital
  • Inspiring interviews with 25 digital winners in 23 interviews
  • How can you claim the number 1 position in the area of consumer experience
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Matthijs van den Broek

Since October 1, 2015 Matthijs is active as Head of Thought Leadership at WUA. In that role he is responsible for the brand, social media, content marketing and a lot of other fun stuff!

What does the perfect vacancies page look like?

WUA have done a lot of research into the perfect PDP page (Product Detail Page). How can companies best show their product to the customer? In April 2016, WUA carried out a study of the online orientation behaviour of higher educated people who are looking for a job on designated recruitment websites. See also: “4 dos for a good recruitment portal”.

At WUA, we believe that orientating yourself on a job is similar to purchasing a product. Therefore, we use the same research models for this customer journey and for benchmarking the customer experience. After all, you’re looking for something you want. Whether it’s  a new phone, insurance, or a new job.

1 Highlight the Who, What, and Where

It is important that the PDP page (vacancies page) starts with the most important information. ING.nl, the number 2 in the study behind ABN AMRO, starts with a title that includes the job title. Then, the description lists details about the position: the duration, the number of hours, and the location. Below that, there is a short, clear table that contains the most important information. This ensures that the jobseeker can clearly see at a glance what the position entails.

Recruitment bp 2

2 Follow the flow of the covering letter

You always start your covering letter by introducing yourself. Then you tell something about your unique skills, and finally you emphasise why you are the perfect candidate for the job. The perfect vacancy is organised in the exact the same way. A short description of the position and the company. Then a description of the type of candidate they are looking for and their desired skillset. And finally, an explanation of why the company is a good match for the potential candidate.

3 Use summarising subheadings

oogle’s crawlers index pages based on their title and text, as well as subheadings. Therefore you need to make sure that the subheadings on the page function as summaries of what the page is about. Headings such as: Job Requirements, Salary, et cetera can create structure for the reader, but actually they don’t really say very much. A subheading such as: “WUA is looking for a PHP developer with 5 years of experience” covers the largest part of the job requirements, and then the text itself can be used to elaborate on the criteria.

4 Sharing is caring

Sharing is caring: it’s a cliché, and it’s true. Almost half of new employees join a company through its own network. Therefore it is very important that vacancies can be shared easily. LinkedIn and Facebook are the two main tools for this. The ‘share’ buttons for these two social media platforms must be clearly visible on the vacancies page. Allowing people to share vacancies also creates a support base within teams. Make sure that everyone on the team shares the vacancy on their personal and professional networks, for example via social media channels.

Matthijs van den Broek

Since October 1, 2015 Matthijs is active as Head of Thought Leadership at WUA. In that role he is responsible for the brand, social media, content marketing and a lot of other fun stuff!

This is how you create the best digital experience for your customers

Change your perspective. Discover what your potential customers experience on your website and look at what they experience on your competitors’ websites. Only then you can ensure that your website meets the needs of your potential customers. With the Digital Sales Scan, you will get insight into the entire online customer journey; which websites are being visited, why do visitors give up or continue, how do your potential customers experience the websites they have visited, and what website do they eventually use to make their purchase. Benefit immediately from the WUA Digital Experience Benchmark with more than 100,000 unique ratings of over 10,000 websites. Choose the Digital Sales Scan and discover:

  • How your website performs compared to your competitors’ sites and apps
  • Which concrete improvements can be made to increase your conversion immediately
  • What you can learn from the best practices from other markets (WUA Global Benchmark)
  • Learn more about the Digital Sales Scan

A Global Benchmark

At WUA we offer a truly global perspective on your customers digital experience with benchmarking in 15 key countries including; United Kingdom, United States, The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Sweden, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Poland, Turkey, Australia, Brazil, India, South Africa, Czech Republic and Russia. New countries are being added all the time. Are you a multinational company and want an in-depth analysis into the online market, WUA has got you covered.

Global Digital Experience Benchmark

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Recent Insights & Best Practices

CompareTheMarket.com wins digital customer experience study car insurance UK

AMSTERDAM – UK consumers favour CompareTheMarket.com the most when it comes to online orientation on car insurance. This is the outcome of the latest WUA digital customer experience study which was carried out independently among n=200 potential customers in the UK car insurance market in January 2017. In the previous study, which was carried out in May 2015, CompareTheMarket.com was also the winner.

Potential customers in the UK market were instructed to go online to look for a car insurance policy. Which providers do they encounter? Which parties are found? Do they continue their customer journey on a website, or do they give up? Why do they continue, and why do they give up? Which parties get preference? What do potential customers like about the order process, and what do they dislike?

>>> For the complete ranking and more insights download the free example report.

Ranking Digital Sales Scan Car Insurance UK January 2017

With this study, WUA maps out the entire UK car insurance market from potential customers’ perspectives. CompareTheMarket.com is the winner of this study with a WPS-score of 74. MoneySuperMarket.com and Gocompare.com get second and third place with 67 points each, followed by Confused.com in 4th place with 64 points. The number 1 CompareTheMarket.com has the highest findability (59%), followed by the number 2 MoneySuperMarket.com and the number 3 Gocompare.com (both 55%). The other providers are found by 42% or less.

The number 1 CompareTheMarket.com was picked by 30% of respondents as their first choice, followed by the number 2 MoneySuperMarket.com, which was first choice for 12% of respondents. For 11% the number 4 Confused.com was their first choice, and the number 5 DirectLine.com was first choice for 10% of respondents. The other providers were put in first place by 7% or lower.

Is your organization active in the car insurance market?

Download the preview report with a selection of interesting benchmark numbers from this online orientation-research into taking out a car insurance. Know where you stand compared to the competition and see which party scores best on the most important elements in the customer journey!

  • Theme scores per provider on Look & Feel, offer and Brand

  • Conversion: visibility and preference

  • 10 profound insights from the research

Download

The complete report Digital Sales Scan Car Insurance January 2017 is a unique tailor-made report including all scores and recommendations and gives direct insight into how to optimize the customer experience and increase conversions.

  • Know where you stand relative to consumer expectations and the experience that others in the market deliver

  • Know your most important improvements and highest priorities for conversion optimization

  • Learn from best practices within and outside the industry and learn from the best

5 interesting insights: Who gets the highest preference?

This study shows once again that Digital Excellence is an absolute necessity. To beat the competition, you have to offer an excellent digital experience in the entire customer journey, and take the number 1 position in preference. Being found and scoring high in Google isn’t good enough. Below are 5 interesting insights from the study:

  1. The providers in the top 3 were second choice for 13% to 18% of respondents, and third choice for 10% to 17%. For example, the number 3 Gocompare.com was first choice for just 7% of respondents. However, 18% of respondents picked this provider as their second choice, and 17% picked it as their third choice. Relatively little effort is required to get preference from these groups of consumers as well.
  2. There is a gap of 13 percentage points in findability between the top 3 and the other providers (42% or lower). Then there is another gap between the number 5 DirectLine.com (38%) and the number 6 Aviva.co.uk (19%).
  3. The number 1 CompareTheMarket.com has by far the highest conversion (51%), followed by the number 6 Aviva.co.uk (30%) and the number 5 DirectLine.com and the number 4 Confused.com (both 25%).
  4. Aviva.co.uk has a relatively low findability of 19%, but this provider has the second highest conversion (30%). The number 7 Churchill.com has the second lowest findability (17%) and the fifth highest conversion (24%). This shows that the few people who managed to find these providers were positive about them.
  5. The number 3 Gocompare.com goes the other way. It has the second highest (55%), but in terms of conversion it reaches seventh place (13%). A similar pattern emerges for the number 2 MoneySuperMarket.com, which also has a findability of 55% and a relatively low conversion of 21%.
>>> More insights and theme scores can be read in the preview report. Download it here for free.

Aim of this study

The aim of the study is to precisely identify the digital experience of consumers, when they search for a car insurance policy, who they choose to buy from, and especially: why. Using a proven model WUA has worked on over the past eight years, we map out what it is exactly exactly that consumers want, what the best practices are, and what the areas of improvement are. The following websites were assessed by consumers in the study:

  • Aviva.co.uk
  • Churchill.com
  • CompareTheMarket.com
  • Confused.com
  • DirectLine.com
  • Gocompare.com
  • MoneySuperMarket.com
  • uSwitch.com

Who can benefit from this study?

In the study, WUA’s online experts reveal problem areas and areas for improvement on all topics based on the Digital Sales Scan model. For each provider, conclusions and concrete recommendations are provided in a tailor-made report. At WUA we know that in order to achieve digital excellence, it is extremely important that the following people and departments are involved with / benefit from this study:

  • Everyone who is commercially responsible: The winner takes it all.
  • Management: for the right direction and mindset
  • Online marketing professionals: get started immediately with the recommendations for higher conversion.
  • Research: Thorough research with validated model is the foundation for digital success.
  • Proposition/marketing: In addition to Look & Feel, the Product Offer and Brand topics are key factors in the buying process.

The level of cooperation of the above stakeholders can make or break digital success!

Please contact Marjolein van Ballegooij, our online expert for this research, and discover how WUA can help you with your digital challenges.

+31 20 531 97 10

Contact Us

Marjolein van Ballegooij

Marjolein van Ballegooij works as Head of Research at WUA! with special attention to the sectors Banking & Insurance.

  • Customer Journey

The Customer Journey and the Role of Benchmarking

The customer journey is the route a consumer takes to reach their goal. This goal could for example be the purchase of a product, solving a problem with a service, or finding information. Companies have become increasingly interested in consumers’ experiences and perceptions during this journey.

Opportunities for growth and loyalty are created through a better understanding of what consumers encounter during their ‘journey’, what they find pleasant, what causes them to give up, and where decision points are located. Service, according to an increasing number of digital professionals, is actually the new sales…

The Digital Sales Journey

The customer journey often starts online. In this orientation phase, the consumer goes online to find information to become more familiar with the product, for example. Here, they encounter various parties who provide what they are looking for, and develop a preference for a particular provider. The tremendous yearly growth of online spending shows that Dutch consumers often complete their purchases online. In 2015, Dutch consumers spent 8.41 billion on product purchases; 21.9% more than in 2014. Spending on services such as travel and event tickets, shows a growth of 10.3%. (source: gfk.com, Thuiswinkel Markt Monitor research)

Especially in online, an optimally organised customer journey on the website is key. After all, for the consumer a different ‘store’ is just one click away. If you want to keep a consumer happy on your website and convert them, you have to at least offer them a clear journey without obstacles that slow them down (e.g. unclear visual navigation, too much information, irrelevant information, an unreliable impression, or technical issues). Companies often get it wrong still, which is evident from the fact that many have low conversion rates hovering around 1%. Unbelievable, really: there are 100 consumers in your store, and 99 of them leave without buying anything.

To get the journey in order, usability tests, A/B testing, and pop-up questionnaires on the website offer a solution. But what is often overlooked, is that a consumer’s digital journey often doesn’t start and end with a visit to a single store. Natural behaviour would be visiting multiple websites by Googling keywords, entering company names directly into the address bar in the browser, or visiting comparison sites.

No matter how well-designed a usability test may be, you won’t know if you’re actually scoring well until you know what is happening within the competitive environment. What do people experience on all these different websites with respect to one another? What makes consumers prefer one but not the other? Which aspects of the customer journey take priority when it comes to improving?

The Digital Service Journey

These days, the optimal organisation of online self-service is considered to be almost as important as the online sales journey. By allowing consumers to answer their questions themselves online, make changes, or manage an account, there is a ‘win’ on both sides. Companies can reduce their service centre costs and thus achieve higher margins, and consumers can get to work whenever it suits them. Without having to worry about office hours, waiting times, and menus. Our own WUA! studies show that more than 70% of consumers want to be able to deal with service-related issues themselves online. And this percentage is increasing rapidly. In order to optimally organise self-service online (think app and the My-environment within websites), it is fascinating to find out what is the standard in the world around the consumer. This standard is determined by the best in class – that is the bar the consumer will set for you.

The role and value of benchmarking

Comparing digital sales and service journeys is something we do on a daily basis at WUA!. Together with our customers, we are building the best digital experience benchmark in the world. In our view, it is rather illogical NOT to compare consumers’ experiences on your website to their experiences on the websites of the competition. This comparison is what we call benchmarking, and we don’t just do this for customer sales journeys, but service journeys as well. When we look at service journeys, we can see that service level expectations are increasing: that is a big challenge!

Contact one of our online experts now and find out how WUA can help you with your digital challenges.

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Marjolein van Ballegooij

Marjolein van Ballegooij works as Head of Research at WUA! with special attention to the sectors Banking & Insurance.

  • Paul Wassenaar

Paul Wassenaar (Justlease.nl): “We want to bring ultimate freedom to automobility!”

Leasen.nl is the big favourite with consumers who are trying to find a private lease car, according to this recent WUA Tracker study in The Netherlands. Paul Wassenaar is a manager at Justlease.nl, which Leasen.nl belongs to as part of Terberg Leasing. A talk about the customer as king, the best mobility solution, A* organisation, and electric bicycles.

Congratulations, Paul Wassenaar! You are the winner of this WUA online orientation study of private lease cars. How important is it for you to be the best?
“Very important, you can’t offer the best solution for the end user if you aren’t the best yourself. We want to bring ultimate freedom to automobility. If that’s not something you have in mind, you will automatically remain mediocre, stuck in the middle, and then at some point it’s game over. So I think it is important to be the best, because it is the only way to make the difference.

“When we started with private lease, Noordlease and MijnDomein were our two competitors. I have a lot of respect for them, they moved towards private lease before we did. We took a very good look at them, but we also wondered how we could be distinctive. And then… you need to actually make the difference. We chose, for example, to go all out on online, whereas others maintain large physical stores. We are now market leader, and need to look at what will be the next step in our entrepreneurship.

“With cars, a lot of costs are involved when it comes to the period between the car leaving the factory and it getting to the consumer. Cars are transported, they are stored somewhere, there is overproduction. They are distributed across different countries, there’s an import house involved. Then they go to a dealer. No-one is happy to foot the bill for this. I can only be the best by breaking through that entire chain and say, just like the Airbnb method: away with almost everything between house and customer in order to achieve equality.”

You scored highest of all providers. What is going well at Leasen.nl?
“Here at Justlease.nl there are three main objectives we focus on every single day. The first is A* organisation. The second is rate of return, and the third is numbers. These numbers are the result of everything that precedes that’s going well. We have got a stable growth path now, and we’re not willing to let that go. We have noticed that by now, 60 percent of our customers no longer come to us via a search engine. They come to us directly through recommendations from friends or family.”

What is the role of customer research and customer focus in your daily work?
“We’ve divided our organisation into squads and tribes, and we have 5 teams, each of which focuses on something that is important to the customer. The way we do customer research and how we look at it will grow along with the WUA! research model. Themes such as Brand and Look & Feel (see also: the WUA! WPS model, MvdB) are important for Justlease.nl as we develop further as an organisation. What we learn from the WUA! studies is that you don’t have to be a big company in order to have a very reliable brand. You also don’t need a lot of brand awareness to be a very reliable brand. So you see: the online game is very different from traditional marketing. You learn much faster, the pace of development is higher. But you must be open to customer feedback, the numbers, and the underlying data.

“We have a customer panel of 300 people and we regularly ask them questions, and we are the only leasing company that has a mobile app as a central service body. The app on your phone is more important than the car you drive. We also do customer research on the new business side. We hold group discussions with WUA!, which is qualitative research. But we also have feedback tools and polls on the site, we do a lot of A/B testing, we are continuously making the data and analytics work for us.

“Once you are one of our customers, our service apparel starts running. As a customer, you are going to experience so much in the next 4 years. From damage repairs to bad luck on holiday. We gauge each process, and every department is responsible for it. We see, also in the teams that are working on the site and developing the app behind the scenes, that making choices is increasingly about the added value for the customer. Do things that customers are waiting for, focus on the things that are really relevant for the customer!”

What is your biggest digital challenge?
“The core of our challenge is to overcome the assumptions and ignorance surrounding Private Lease. Once people are in contact with us, we score very well. Digitally it is difficult to establish this contact. We only work digitally and online, and we’re creating a new automotive market which, to date, has always been offline. Orientation may be done online, but buying a car is something many people still do offline. You buy from a dealer, at sales shows, maybe you feel it’s necessary to test drive a car before you buy it. Private lease is relatively new. People are cognitively dissonant. The product ‘private lease’ should be taken into consideration much more often: I will either lease or buy. Or I’m going to either lease or finance. If you are financially driven and calculate what a car with everything that goes with it actually costs, I can convince you.

“We have, quite simply, the best mobility solution in the Netherlands. In terms of organisation, service, price-wise, in terms of online search experience. In this respect, at the moment we are still using a bit of a generalist approach with broad Adwords campaigns, for example. We need to be present where the needs are, also offline. So we need to be there when you take your car to the garage and are presented with a huge bill. Do you go for the repair, or do you order a car from us following the principle of ‘order today = drive tomorrow’?

“People think you also have additional tax on private leases. That causes us problems, yes. If you’re driving a lease car, the AFM thinks it’s financed. And we suffer from that. We view it as a rental, which is legally true. However, the AFM sees it as a financial liability for the longer term and that is actually true. Then you see that people like you, Matthijs, will continue to use a 10 year old diesel because they think it means they’ll have less financial burden. That’s not the case, go on and calculate it. The risk of driving an older car is much greater, because you will probably need a lot of repairs. A small repair can easily cost as much as 1000 euros. Where does that money come from? Your savings account, if you have one. As a result, there will be other things you can’t pay for. For us the challenge is finding a happy medium for consumers.”

How do you view service in relation to sales? Could service eventually become the new sales in your industry?
“I want new customers to get confirmation from existing customers that we are the right party with a very good product. As I said before, this is true for more than sixty percent of new customers. This means you generate more sales, it makes sense. But at the same time, the core of a family business is that you remain family. If customers experience any problems, looking for a solution is the very first thing we do. No matter what.”

“Ultimately, as a company you just CANNOT deliver a bad product. A bad product will affect your new business and retention. You can say, however, that you offer the lowest price, and as a result you have to compromise, meaning that consumers do not get EVERYTHING another company may be able to provide at a higher price. But you can’t say: you’ll get this or that, and then fail to deliver. Online you will be hung from the highest tree.

“So, we are more like Coolblue than bol.com. Coolblue says: every experience you have with us has to be perfect. Ultimately, in the long term you’re shooting yourself in the foot if you do it wrong. Bol.com collaborates with external parties, and three times in a row I experienced bad delivery. It arrived late, they couldn’t find the parcel, and so on. Coolblue take care of the delivery themselves with their blue vans. That’s what we do: we have our own cars with registration and stock, with our own transport through our own system, and you can come and pick up your car from us, here in Utrecht. We have everything under control.”

So… with this level of control, can you enforce an A* service experience within your organisation?
“Yes! Our delivery of cars gets a 9.6 out of 10 with an NPS of 73! Every Saturday, it’s one big party here (the delivery day of the lease cars, MvdB). You don’t want to leave that to someone else, do you? It’s also possible to get the car delivered to your house. We were the first leasing company with a Thuiswinkel quality mark, haha!”

Are there any cool things in the making at Leasen.nl within your focus area? What (digital) innovations are you working on?
“We have just started leasing bicycles as well, we’re focusing on the electrical segment. We are now offering an electric bicycle for 40-50 euros per month. We also offer a little trip registration device for 3 euros per month. And you can call us for restaurant tips, the best garages, or where to fill up cheaply. We are making your trip more enjoyable this way. Our slogan is: ‘Dat is slim geregeld’ (‘That’s cleverly arranged’). I want to service the entire Netherlands and relieve all auto stress for everyone.

“In digital we have taken a massive step, but it needs to be even better. At brand level, we first had business lease, then private lease, and now we’ve added bicycle lease. We have an ever-expanding range of products, and the challenge is to structure the Justlease.nl brand well online too. The question is what the mobility market will look like in 10 years. What I do know, is that we are going to put our mark on it with Justlease.nl. We don’t care how, as long as it is the best solution for the consumer!”

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Matthijs van den Broek

Since October 1, 2015 Matthijs is active as Head of Thought Leadership at WUA. In that role he is responsible for the brand, social media, content marketing and a lot of other fun stuff!

What does the perfect vacancies page look like?

WUA have done a lot of research into the perfect PDP page (Product Detail Page). How can companies best show their product to the customer? In April 2016, WUA carried out a study of the online orientation behaviour of higher educated people who are looking for a job on designated recruitment websites. See also: “4 dos for a good recruitment portal”.

At WUA, we believe that orientating yourself on a job is similar to purchasing a product. Therefore, we use the same research models for this customer journey and for benchmarking the customer experience. After all, you’re looking for something you want. Whether it’s  a new phone, insurance, or a new job.

1 Highlight the Who, What, and Where

It is important that the PDP page (vacancies page) starts with the most important information. ING.nl, the number 2 in the study behind ABN AMRO, starts with a title that includes the job title. Then, the description lists details about the position: the duration, the number of hours, and the location. Below that, there is a short, clear table that contains the most important information. This ensures that the jobseeker can clearly see at a glance what the position entails.

Recruitment bp 2

2 Follow the flow of the covering letter

You always start your covering letter by introducing yourself. Then you tell something about your unique skills, and finally you emphasise why you are the perfect candidate for the job. The perfect vacancy is organised in the exact the same way. A short description of the position and the company. Then a description of the type of candidate they are looking for and their desired skillset. And finally, an explanation of why the company is a good match for the potential candidate.

3 Use summarising subheadings

oogle’s crawlers index pages based on their title and text, as well as subheadings. Therefore you need to make sure that the subheadings on the page function as summaries of what the page is about. Headings such as: Job Requirements, Salary, et cetera can create structure for the reader, but actually they don’t really say very much. A subheading such as: “WUA is looking for a PHP developer with 5 years of experience” covers the largest part of the job requirements, and then the text itself can be used to elaborate on the criteria.

4 Sharing is caring

Sharing is caring: it’s a cliché, and it’s true. Almost half of new employees join a company through its own network. Therefore it is very important that vacancies can be shared easily. LinkedIn and Facebook are the two main tools for this. The ‘share’ buttons for these two social media platforms must be clearly visible on the vacancies page. Allowing people to share vacancies also creates a support base within teams. Make sure that everyone on the team shares the vacancy on their personal and professional networks, for example via social media channels.

Matthijs van den Broek

Since October 1, 2015 Matthijs is active as Head of Thought Leadership at WUA. In that role he is responsible for the brand, social media, content marketing and a lot of other fun stuff!

These companies benefit from the WUA Digital Sales and Service Scans: