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By implementing User Experience (UX) techniques, we transformed an old, incapable Wordpress-based website into a new user-centric and fully functional digital experience. The results revolutionised Chester Student Lets and have been recognised by the prestigious Wirehive 100 awards by being shortlisted for Best Consumer Site 2016.
Chester Student Lets (CSL), a key player in Chester’s university student accommodation market, recognised that their existing Wordpress website platform was not meeting the needs of their staff or customers.
The system proved difficult to make simple updates, with changes to properties being very limited and inflexible. Students struggled to find property relevant to them and landlords were unable to update their property listing which resulted in out of date content and a very poor user experience overall.
They wanted to develop a digital presence that would bring game-changing results. CSL were desperate for a new site that met their business requirements but also helped reposition them as market leader in the area.
At DotLabel we shared our expertise on the importance of the user experience (UX) in order to deliver an effective digital solution. Throughout the process DotLabel designed and developed the new site based on 15 user personas (internal and external to the business). Central to the development of the website was the customer journey. CSL wanted to make it as simple as possible for students to browse and register their interest for a property and similarly for landlords to understand CSL fully managed services.
The new platform now allows staff to easily manage properties via the intuitive admin interface whilst seamlessly feeding data back and forth with their new online contract system.
"The new site is so easy to use that it’s a genuine pleasure.The amount of pain and grief we used to endure with the old site has meant the new site has paid for itself tenfold in just staff happiness levels!" Danny, Chester Student Lets Managing Director
In the first six months since launch CSL recruited 9 new landlords in comparison to 3 in total last year. With each new landlord adding up to 5 new properties each this is a huge increase to the CSL portfolio. CSL have concluded that if this growing interest from Landlords remains they will recruit 600% more landlords in 2016 compared to 2015. Since the site has gone live there has been 3x more traffic to the site, the bounce rate has dropped from 40.7% to 4.7% with users spending 25% more time on the site per session this is a great indicator that we were successful adopting a user focused approach.
"The website has really helped position CSL as a real market leader in the Chester area. We are now speaking with a number of companies about managing their premium halls of residence properties something that we would never have been considered for in the past." Jools, Brand marketing & change manager
With such fantastic results we were keen to share the impact of having such a better performing, user-centric website. When we shared the story with the Wirehive, they agreed and shortlisted CSL for Best consumer website.
Are you thinking of transforming an underperforming, difficult to use website into an asset that will help grow your business?
Do you want to see the visible results that a user-centric site will bring to your organisation?
We have a range of user experience and insight services including stakeholder discovery workshops, developing user personas, task mapping and analysis, scenario development, process flow and customer journey mapping. To ensure a user-centric approach we can develop the information architecture, create prototype and manage usability testing and more...