The National Insurance Crime Bureau leads a united effort of insurers, law enforcement agencies and lawmakers to prevent and combat insurance fraud and vehicle crime through data analytics, investigations, training, legislative advocacy and public awareness. NICB membership includes nearly 1,100 property and casualty insurance companies, vehicle rental companies, auto auctions, vehicle finance companies and self-insured organizations.
At the root of all websites is content. It is the main purpose of most visits to the website. However, in the case of the NICB website, the low number of pages per session together with the high bounce rate and short session duration had resulted in limited exposure to site content. An analysis conducted by .orgSource in August 2016 found that overall, 99.7 percent of the 453,937 page views were on the home page. In fact, beyond the home page, the most frequently visited page had only 137 views for the year and is no longer active, having experienced all its views during the fall of 2015.
NICB wanted the new site to better “tell the story” of what NICB can do for an organization—how it can help a potential member company improve their business and bottom line. NICB also wanted to attract more law enforcement officers to its resources—as many officers did not realize NICB existed—and make it easy for them to find relevant information quickly.
In fall 2016, NICB sought to replace its current Content Management System and improve its public-facing website, separating it from its member website to make it easier for members to get to their content, and to better target its audiences. The new platform would enable users to quickly understand the value of NICB through improved SEO, site design, navigation, and search.
- Other primary objectives for the public-facing site redesign and the new, easy-to-use CMS included:
- Having more control and ease of use in updating site content
- Delivering dynamic feedback and improving analytics to better track sources of traffic
- Improving organization and presentation of video content
- Providing for simple e-commerce functionalities, including event registrations and sales of Vehicle Identification Manuals, without requiring a log-in
- Improving the speed of load times on the site
- Better integration with social media
Overhauling the VINCheckSM feature (the most visited item on the website with more than 6 million annual visits, where users input a Vehicle Identification Number to determine if their vehicle is unrecovered salvage or stolen) so staff could learn how many VINCheckSM searches were performed during a given time period and users with vehicles listed as salvage would find helpful information pertaining to next steps
With all of these needs, NICB required a partner to guide NICB on how to improve the usability of site content and features so that the site serves as a strong recruitment tool.
NICB partnered with .orgSource to assist with the development of the website vision and strategy, delineation of the website and CMS requirements, RFP development, and CMS/design vendor evaluation and selection, as well as the project implementation plan. During the initial strategy workshop with key NICB staff led by .orgSource senior consultants, the team aligned the website vision with business goals and set expectations for governance, content, technology and user experience considerations to ensure project success.
In addition, .orgSource led a content strategy workshop, advising and providing consensus on the development of website content. The team took a deep dive into priority audiences and core content needs per audience, outlined the purpose and process of a content audit and discussed an approach to determine what content to strengthen, develop and remove.
NICB chose Sandstorm as its website developer. Worked kicked off in April 2017, and the new website launched in November 2017. By using Drupal, the CMS and the website are basically one in the same, providing flexibility and an intuitive administrative interface.
According to Emily Kodner, Sandstorm’s web strategy director: “The launch of this site represents a shift for NICB. Previously, the site was trying to address two core audiences: the general public and membership. The new site is focused more on the general public and other non-member audiences. This focus allows NICB to convey a clearer message and to advance their mission by raising awareness of insurance fraud and theft.”
Regarding .orgSource’s pre-work in setting up the project for success, Kodner says: “.orgSource helped NICB articulate a web strategy so it came into the project with several key decisions already settled and priorities identified. The NICB team knew, for example, that it wanted to shift the site’s focus to the general public, that it wanted to better surface and display the organization’s large collection of videos, and that it wanted to begin selling its brochures and posters through the site.”