Working with Zürcher Kantonalbank through every step of the design process, our joint exploration of visual and usability designs greatly enhanced understanding of user needs and led to a highly successful outcome for the new website. Zürcher Kantonalbank relies upon Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery - practices that are followed for all components of the website - to help guarantee reliability.

For the Zürcher Kantonalbank websites and applications we developed an attractive, coherent and meaningful visual design language, including a beautiful set of custom icons, to reflect the spirit of the Zürcher Kantonalbank brand. This design language serves to unify not only aesthetic presentation but the presentation of information expressed through it as well, and helped solve specific UX and design challenges effectively.

Tenfold traffic increase on online marketing offers, more orders, increased engagement: the new website has met and surpassed expectations.

The website main features are:

  • Fully responsive
  • Online Styleguide
  • Accessibility WCAG 2.0 Level AA
  • Custom development

Usability was the keyword for the site's visual design, which needs to work equally well for a vast range of customers, from the most diffident to the most experienced web users. User needs are captured and documented using studies based on personas. The site conforms to WCAG standards, guaranteeing accessibility. Achieving this involved for example considerable attention to the JavaScript technology used, providing keyboard navigation throughout the site, making assessments of contrast ratios, and so on. The online Styleguide - which defines visual appearance and the technical frontend - is based on interaction design patterns. These design patterns developed by Zürcher Kantonalbank ensure a consistent experience throughout all web frontends.

The site's frontend is developed through Divio's interactive styleguide, itself a cutting-edge application created in Flask, a Python-based web application micro-framework, and emplying extensive custom object-oriented JavaScript libraries. The styleguide defines key aspects of the user experience, and is logically decoupled from Zürcher Kantonalbank's application architecture, but integrated into the development process. This makes possible wholly independent development of both and guarantees the integrity of the visual and interface design. The site's frontend framework embodies best practices for usability, using up-to-date interface frameworks such as Foundation and Compass to provide the best possible user experience. This layer integrates with the the bank's Java components to render the application's frontend for delivery to the client. The combination is stable and very responsive. The frontend development process also includes sophisticated automated testing.

A strategy of progressive enhancement allows Zürcher Kantonalbank to guarantee the usability and function of their sites on the widest possible range of devices, including older equipment, while exploiting the capabilities of up-to-date technology. The sites offer a sound basis for long-term future development and the adoption of new technological advances. Mobile users, with lower-powered devices and often on slower or less stable connections, expect nonetheless a consistent and usable experience. A great deal of effort has gone in to guaranteeing this, by working for example to ensure that bandwidth requirements are kept as low as possible. 

The new site has seen business orders - packet and account openings, card orders, credit requests, eBanking registrations and scheduled appointments - soar by over a third. Traffic to the site has increased substantially. One driver of this is an online marketing strategy aimed at new and previously under-exploited targets. Our development for mobile users has also greatly increased the numbers of those users, to 15% amongst private clients. New business is coming this way too: 20% of ZKB young Paket orders are now made by smartphone.

The redesign of the website has received very positive feedback from its users. In written testimonials, its visual design and improved structure in particular have garnered numerous compliments. The virtual business card of Zürcher Kantonalbank is proving to be a reliable and valuable asset to the bank.

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