Benchmarking Reports

Benchmarking is the ideal way to learn from others in a similar sector. It will help you to ensure that your website becomes the "site of choice" for potential customers.

Our benchmarking report compares your website's strengths and weaknesses against others to provide practical examples for improvement taken from the "best practices" identified by our research.

In order to ensure that our report as is as objective as possible we use a selected panel of users from our network to support the process. They are set a structured programme to follow on the selected sites and then report on their findings. Our in-house experts analyse the panel’s feedback and look at the technical issues arising from their comments and scores.

Issues arising from this analysis are grouped according to whether they affect the content, style, user navigation or the underlying engineering code.

A typical benchmarking process

  1. Select the websites for the benchmarking test
    • For meaningful results at least four websites are normally required with the preferred number being between six and eight sites.
    • For government departments and Local Authorities the selection of sites should include those awarded pathfinder status or some other recognition of excellence.
  2. Agree typical user profile and select panel members
    • A "typical user profile" describes the primary target audience of the website (if such exists).
    • Depending upon the breadth of the user profile agreed, the panel will consist of between ten and twenty members.
    • A representative selection of connection types and browser brands (including some assistive technologies) would be employed.
  3. Agree range of typical tasks and design survey procedure. These would normally include :
    • A brief visit to each site to note initial impressions of the site and its usability
    • A longer visit to proceed through the stages of researching a particular service or product
  4. Set tasks and receive responses
    • The tasks will, as far as possible, be conducted within an environment similar to that expected for a typical user. For example a Local Authority website would be tested by users at home or at the local library; an office supplies website would be tested in an office environment.
    • Each panel member works from a standard, agreed, survey sheet making qualitative and quantitative responses as and when appropriate.
    • Panel members prepare free text comments and personal comparison
  5. Collect basic quantitative measurements such as load times, search engine rankings.
    • Time taken for a representative sample of pages to load into a browser under various conditions (Modem, ADSL, mobile phone)
    • Ranking level for each website from the leading search engines.
    • Number of tab key presses and mouse clicks required to navigate to a sample of critical pages.
    • If applicable, the time taken for a reply to be issued in response to a form enquiry.
  6. Compile final report
    • Analyse statistical data (quantitative and qualitative)
    • Analyse free text responses
    • Collect screen shots and code fragments to illustrate points raised. 
    • Summarise report findings and list suggested improvements.

This report process typically takes between four and six weeks to complete.

Use our Quotation Form to request a free benchmarking quotation for your site.