BankWest launches new site

BankWest re-launched their site on Thursday March 17, 2011.

Major changes include full screen brand images across the home and category landing pages, a major focus on search, product save and page sharing functionality.  In a move away from the standard top bar navigation approach used across major banking sites in Australia (CommBank, ANZ, Westpac and NAB), BankWest have located their main navigation bar down the left-hand side of the screen, expanding it vertically for 2nd level links and right (into the body of the page) for 3rd level links.

What we like:

–      The playful design approach in line with ‘happy banking’ branding.

–      The focus on search (the idea, not the implementation).

–      The product save functionality.

–      The simple, subtle share functionality.

What we don’t like:

–      That the site is difficult to navigate:

o   The search is not intuitive.

o   The site link copy is too often misleading or overly generic.

(Particularly on the 2nd and 3rd level pages of the site)

o   The user experience flow often results in users bypassing the overview / comparison pages of the site and arriving at product detail pages with no top level context.

o   Product detail pages are user journey ‘dead ends’ in too many cases, with no clear next steps back up to overview / product comparison pages.

Check out the site here http://www.bankwest.com.au/personal

We wrote a full analysis on this so if you want more details ask Abby

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