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10 Great Websites: Accenture.com

September 13, 2010 - 9:10 am EDT
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  • Company: Accenture

    URL: www.accenture.com

    Target audience: C-level executives at large companies, government organizations and job seekers

    Key Web executives: Molly Spatara, senior director, Internet marketing; Teresa Poggenpohl, executive director, global image

    Number of people who work on the site: 65

    Last major redesign: October 2009

    No. of pages on the site: 25,000

    Web developer: In-house (with design support from select agencies)

    Research drove management consulting and outsourcing firm Accenture's latest website redesign. The company wanted visitors to the site to spend more time on it and interact with more content, so the new design had to be focused on user experience. "The last thing we wanted to do was overwhelm people, but we wanted to find ways to bring them back again and again," said Molly Spatara, senior director of Internet marketing.

    After completing primary research—including one-on-one interviews—as well as secondary research on marketplace trends and emerging technologies, the Web team realized that it needed more on-screen real estate to draw people in without confusing them. So Accenture expanded the home page design footprint of the site, moving it to a wider screen to provide that extra real estate as well as more white space, Spatara said. The company also dramatically redesigned its Outlook Journal section—an online thought leadership journal—as well as its Newsroom section for journalists, she said.

    The Web team also updated functionality. Social media has been enabled across the site, allowing visitors to share almost anything via social networking sites. Plus, a live, scrolling banner on the home page allowsviewers to see what's being discussed on Accenture's Twitter account. This feature alone, Spatara said, is helping the company add about 200 new followers each week. Accenture also uses social channels to boost site traffic, letting followers know when new content is posted to the site. "If there's a new Outlook Journal, we will push it out through Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Facebook," she said.

    Accenture's goal in making these updates was to achieve higher engagement—more downloads, video views and questions submitted, Spatara said, and it's working. The site experienced a 21% increase in overall page views and a 23% increase in engagement through downloads, video views, RSS/podcast subscriptions and audio listens, she said. Page views for the Outlook Journal section have increased 59% increase, and Newsroom page views have increased 45%.

    Expert commentary, Kara Pernice, managing director, Nielsen Norman Group: It's easy to tell what Accenture does. It demonstrates achievements and is clear about its different offerings. Video is integrated in appropriate places. For example, you can read about analytics and there is a video right there so you can learn more. There are also related links, which offer people a path of places to go. And another great thing: Contact information is always with you, which is invaluable for a b2b site because you eventually need to speak to someone.

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