Northern Rock mortgages site
We have been working closely with Northern Rock to transform the mortgages section of their website to make it easier for customers to find a mortgage and learn more about the home-buying process.
The new Northern Rock mortgages website provides helpful advice and practical information for everyone, from first-time buyers to seasoned house hunters and everyone in between. It also includes a range of new tools designed to take the hassle and complexity out of the mortgage selection process, including a jargon buster, budget planner and overpayment calculator.
For those ready to take the property plunge, the find a mortgage section guides people through the mortgage selection process in a simple and unique way, allowing users to play with their options as they go and see the effect on their mortgage options in real-time.
Powered by a completely new application, this is the first site of its kind which has ultimately been designed to help people make better choices and leave them more informed about mortgages at the end of the process. Users can save their preferred mortgages as they go, work out what they can afford to pay each month, and even use a tool to understand how their monthly payments would alter if interest rates changed.
Early indications of the new site are proving to be extremely positive. Since its launch last week, the number of people expressing an interest in applying for a mortgage has risen by 41% when compared to the previous week. Despite virtually no acquisition activity, there has been a 15% increase of new people visiting the website, with returning customers up 10% - an overall uplift of 13%.
Searching for mortgages online has always been a cumbersome and confusing process for users, and it’s been fantastic working with Northern Rock to overcome that challenge. By combining our expertise in user experience, creative design, copywriting and technical build, we’ve created a step-change in the way people search for and select mortgages online. We have worked with Northern Rock on a range of projects over the years, but it’s been particularly rewarding to lead the strategic direction of this project and bring together every element of our digital expertise.
To ensure that the site was completely customer-focussed, we carried out extensive user research at the outset of the project to understand the needs and motivations of different mortgage customers. We also undertook user-testing prior to launch to see how people responded to the site and to make further refinements to the experience.
Comments from the user testing included: “It’s very easy to use. I like the fact there isn’t loads of complex information. Mortgages can really confuse people, so I love how clear it is.” When interacting with the interest-rate tool on the site, another user said: “This is something I have never seen before. It’s far more helpful than other websites – I really like it”.
Moving forward, we are continuing to work with Northern Rock to enhance the website as it evolves.