UK companies still struggle with website content for corporate audiences
The websites of the 200 largest companies in the UK have just been ranked to see how well they meet the demands of the capital market and jobseekers. According to the latest survey, improvements have been made in features and functionality since last year but the struggle to provide important IR related content continues.
Websites are getting faster but fall short when it comes to content
Starting with the good news: UK companies are getting the basic prerequisites right in providing reasonably fast websites, and the majority are now secure (using https). While there a few positive aspects on UK websites, they are still lagging behind when it comes to delivering the kind of information that both the capital markets and job seekers require to make informed decisions about a company.
Comparing the results of the 20 largest companies in each of the 13 countries listed in the summary, the UK comes 10th, almost 20 points (out of 100) behind Finland. The average score of all UK companies this year was 41.1 (out of 100) compared to an average of 47 for the 500 largest European companies.
Financial presentations and reports are in high demand
UK companies are stronger when it comes to including content related to reporting, especially in providing financial presentations and reports – two of the most important pieces of content according to the respondents in Comprend’s Capital Market survey.
One good example is Provident Financial who present an extensive, and at the same time easy-to-use, archive for results, reports and presentations.
Company information is one of the better sections
UK companies are also reasonably good at presenting their business and other information about the company such as the business model and geographical presence.
The business model is given an average of 4.3 in importance, on a scale from 1-5, by stakeholders. Mondi is a good example - they present their business model using graphs, videos and text to outline what they do.
Get a handle on IR information
Of all the questions that we ask, financial targets are highest in demand with an average of 4.53 (of 5). In the UK, only 9% of the ranked companies provide this in numbers on their websites. Though, the number for the rest of Europe is also quite low at 22%.
To help the capital market in making correct estimates, another area of improvement in the IR section is to present how the company views the near future when it comes to the market and financials. Petrofac is one of few who provide this.
The IR information presented on UK websites is actually getting worse in meeting the demands of the stakeholders, with an average fulfilment of 25% this year, compared to 31% last year.
Jobseekers want to know what it’s like to work at the company
Both active and passive jobseekers of all ages agreed that information on what it is like to work for a potential employer is important. Jobseekers still prefer to find this information on the corporate website (70%), although the popularity of LinkedIn for this purpose has increased to 34% (from 20% last year).
UK companies are relatively ok in providing this information, although it could be improved by adding more information about the work environment and future competence development.
A little more than half of the UK companies use LinkedIn on a regular basis to communicate with potential jobseekers.
James Handslip, Director of Comprend Ltd says:
“Despite the economic uncertainty, it is pretty surprising that UK companies have decided not to disclose important IR information.”
Top performers in the United Kingdom
Although the average of all UK companies has gone down since last year, the score of the top 10 performers has increased from 55.8 to 60.3, which is a significant improvement on earlier years. Hopefully the increased score of the top performers will inspire the rest of the companies to improve their websites and better meet their visitors’ needs and demands.
The best performer in Webranking by Comprend 2018-2019 is Petrofac, who increased their score on last year by almost 8 points, from 55.6 to 63.4 points (out of 100). The main improvements were made in providing information about the company, to jobseekers and the IR-section.
The first runner up is BP, only 0.3 points behind Petrofac with 63.1 points. BP is particularly strong in sustainability information, careers and information about BP.
In third place, Legal & General, who has made solid improvements in the sustainability section as well as in careers. L&G scores 62.2 points, an increase of 11.3 points.
The most improved company is Just Eat, with an increase of 17.2 points up to 51.3.
Webranking by Comprend is based on research and facts. Our criteria evaluate how well companies meet the demand for content from their stakeholders. To be able to do an objective evaluation of the nearly 1,000 companies that we rank, we don’t include design or user friendliness in the ranking criteria.
We do however also want to commend some companies outside of the Top 3 that, in addition to good scores in Webranking, also provide a good user experience. Halma and Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company both manage to provide a clean and clear navigation, using standard labels that simplifies the search for content for visitors. Unilever's website uses imagery and design in a unique and engaging way, setting itself apart from many other corporate websites.
|Legal & General
|InterContinental Hotels Group
See the full UK Results list