Fund and asset managers are still failing to meet standards when it comes to their websites, according to a new report from Swiss research firm MyPrivateBanking Research.
The report assessed the mobile and desktop websites of 15 fund and asset management companies worldwide according to 60 criteria covering areas such as user experience, content, interactivity, navigation and structure. On average, desktop websites only scored 67 percent of the maximum points possible, with the biggest demerit coming from a lack of interactive tools to help clients process large amounts of fund information.
“Many of the evaluated websites are not able to satisfy even basic requirements with regard to an innovative and interactive digital experience,” said Rosalia Engchuan, an analyst with MyPrivateBanking. “The evaluated desktop websites ranged from average to alarmingly weak.”
Fund managers are performing even worse on mobile devices. In a separate study, MyPrivateBanking found only 20 percent of the leading fund managers even offered a mobile website. Of those that did, just 40 percent could adequately provide core content like fund information. MyPrivateBanking also gave the fund managers’ websites an average score of 40 percent for usability.
“The slow adoption of mobile media leaves the fund management industry far behind other industries,” Engchuan said. “Fund managers need to keep in mind that they are not only competing with their peers, but also with a whole range of new fintech players that are aggressively entering the market, such as robo advisors.”
To good news is some early adopters are setting an example for the rest of the industry to follow. TIAA-CREF received the highest combined score for desktop and mobile websites with 84 points out of 100, followed by Fidelity and Franklin Templeton with 77 points each. TIAA-CREF had the top performing desktop website, while Franklin Templeton and PIMCO both shared first place in the mobile website study.
MyPrivateBanking said fund managers should think more about user experience by presenting fund data in a more intuitive and visual way. There should also be interactive tools like calculators, demos, games and questionnaires, and mobile websites should be responsive instead of just a shrunken version of the desktop site. Improving websites, MyPrivateBanking said, is key to capturing the minds of existing and prospective clients and supporting the decision making process.
A similar study of wealth managers’ websites in September found that advisors are performing better, but are still guilty of just shrinking their websites for mobile devices rather provide a mobile-optimized experience.