Getfused has been partners with Needham Bank since we launched their new web presence in 2013. Since that time, Needham Bank has gone through considerable growth, opening new banking centers in Dover, Ashland, Millis, and Natick as well as adding a new loan center and an operations center at their main campus in Needham. Their website scaled well through the years, meeting the demands of this rapidly growing bank.
Creating a great website is an iterative process. Over time, new insights are gained and goals shift. Additionally, our continuous platform updates often provide new ways to enhance the experience for visitors and the internal team that manages the site. A routine User Experience Review uncovered signs that Needham Bank was starting to outgrow the website we had architected for them nearly 5 years prior.
Once we opened conversation of a major iteration, stakeholders expressed a desire to update the look and feel to match their refreshed brand styles. We also identified the need to become compliant with web accessibility guidelines as specified in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In early 2017 we performed a full overhaul of their web presence.
Redefining the Site Structure
Getfused created a new architectural diagram to plan the next evolution of Needham Bank’s web presence. Content definitions were established for the 15+ content entry types (i.e. products, locations, staff, etc.) to be managed by the bank. Getfused performed content mapping to ensure the new sitemap had a home for all existing website content as well as print marketing collateral. Content mapping helps us define content that needs to be migrated, consolidated, or in some cases, created. One of the strengths of our CMS is a flexible content model that allows us to redesign a site and reorganize navigation without touching the underlying content. Building a new site doesn’t mean starting from scratch.
A Path for Every Visitor
One of our main goals was to simplify navigation, especially for the growing number of mobile users. We worked closely with the Needham Bank team to create a set of wireframe prototypes that allowed us to visualize the common tasks performed by each audience and ensure a positive experience for all. During this process, we defined navigation systems and screen flow, thought through the position and placement of information across pages, and provided responsive template views for desktop, tablet, and mobile.
New Page Templates to Meet New Needs
New landing page templates were developed to utilize a long-scroll, panel-driven format that allows Needham Bank to tell their story to their varying target audiences. This flexible template enables the bank to leverage the same product descriptions to appeal to different audiences on separate pages. Write content once, relate it in wherever it’s relevant: a content manager’s dream.
Visual Design Refresh
Getfused brought consistency to Needham Bank’s brand by leveraging styles from their advertisements to evolve the web style guide. We used this visual design update to iterate a series of design compositions of key pages. The new designs shy away from traditional community bank promotions and messaging, reflecting Needham Bank’s evolved approach to marketing.
A Secure Deployment
Getfused deployed the site on our enterprise content management system in our secure, secluded, and fully managed datacenter environment, designed specifically for security, complexity, and performance. Utilizing our content distribution network (CDN) provides unparalleled speed, uptime, and reliability while allowing content publishing for time-sensitive content (e.g. rates) using smart caching policies. An independent security company performs daily audits of network infrastructure.
We re-evaluated complex third-party platform integrations that were a part of the original site, such as video players and financial calculators, and found opportunities to simplify and modernize by introducing new compliant and flexible services. We work on a recurring basis with Needham Bank to quickly add technical features that assist in the promotion and adoption of new banking products.
The Needham Bank website is now compliant with W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA. Everyone wins when we make content more accessible. The bank gets access to a wider audience when the design doesn't leave anyone out, people with disabilities are able to use the site, and the experience for all visitors is smoother. Search engines are also able to scrape more content, aiding SEO efforts to drive more traffic to the site.
A Consistent Story of Community
We worked with the bank to produce a unique video interviewing Eric Morse, CEO of Needham Bank, to tell the story of their community bank contributing and giving back to the needs of the local communities that they serve. Our creative team worked with Needham Bank in a series of creative workshops to fully understand the direction the brand has taken since the last design. During these workshops, a web style guide evolved that provided direction for imagery and messaging to be used throughout the site.