How Santander and iProspect gained more conversions by optimising their mobile UX and paid media spend

November 2019

With a priority to grow customer loyalty and market share for Santander U.K.’s digitally-savvy customers, the bank partnered with iProspect to improve their mobile user experience. With a much speedier, frictionless mobile site – accompanied by a pivot in paid media spend – they saw a boost in business results. Learn from Santander U.K.'s Interim CMO, Dan Sherwood, and iProspect’s U.K. CEO, Stefan Bardega, on how they did it.

The business challenge

Santander U.K. has 14 million active U.K. customers and 5.5 million of those are digitally-savvy. Therefore, a key strategic priority was to grow customer loyalty and market share of their online offering.

With many customers using the bank’s services on their mobile phones, Santander U.K. set out to improve the conversion rate of product applications on the mobile site – so they teamed up with the performance marketing agency iProspect.

Having a faster mobile site helps to ensure our user experience is as frictionless as possible for the thousands of customers who visit each day.

The approach

Santander, iProspect, and Google ran a full audit of the homepage and key product landing pages. The audit provided competitor analysis as well as a structured set of findings and recommendations to improve site load times.

Having identified mobile site speed impediments, Santander developers implemented changes that focused on areas such as JavaScript loading, JavaScript requests, and critical asset fixes. The mobile site load time immediately improved by 2.5 seconds for key pages, propelling the bank’s Lighthouse performance score into the top 10% for the U.K. market.

Among the development team, these early wins bolstered confidence in the recommendations and helped secure further resources for implementing additional changes.

The results

Santander compared before and after results to accurately assess the impact of their mobile-first developments. With the mobile site now loading up to 23% faster, the team saw metrics across Santander’s current, business, investment, and corporate banking products improve dramatically.

For example, Santander’s current account product – the paid search click-through rate improved by 11%, cost per click dropped by 22%, and cost per conversion fell by 15%.

However, the success of the changes didn’t end at site metrics. By demonstrating improvements in paid media efficiency, the campaign has led to a reallocation of spend to paid search – adding up to a 14% increase month on month.

“More customers than ever are using mobile devices to browse the range of products and services that we have on our site," says Dan Sherwood, Interim CMO of Santander U.K. "Having a faster mobile site helps to ensure that we deliver as frictionless a user experience as possible for the thousands of customers that interact with our mobile site each day. This partnership has allowed us to effectively improve our mobile site speed, which has had a positive effect on a range of key business metrics.”

"iProspect have a longstanding deep relationship with both Google and Santander. As a key partner of Google, we wanted to prove, with Santander, that investing in improved mobile site speed really does impact mobile site conversions, user experiences and business performance,'' says Stefan Bardega, iProspect’s U.K. CEO and EMEA President. ''I am delighted that this three way collaboration has yielded excellent beyond the click results for Santander consumer products, increasing our confidence to invest in both mobile UX and paid search.''

How Santander and iProspect gained more conversions by optimising their mobile UX and paid media spend
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