unique pageviews since May 2020
average time users spent on the Hub compared to rest of the site
increase in Google ranking
The company wanted to make its SME data library easy and free for anyone to use.
Because nothing like this existed, Close Brothers had to create a bespoke data hub.
Acquia Site Studio
Since the SME Data Hub launched in May 2020, its data has seen more than 8,500 unique pageviews, and the average time users spend on the Hub is more than double the rest of the website. In addition, the site’s Google ranking has improved by almost 9% since the Hub was launched.
A leading UK merchant banking group, Close Brothers provides lending, deposit taking, wealth management services and securities trading. The company employs more than 3,000 people and is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Close Brothers wanted to make its data library — filled with topics and data from subject matter experts (SMEs) — easy and free for anyone to access, believing that if more people used its data, they would feel positive about the brand, growing the site’s audience and improving its organic ranking.
The company believed that no other similar data library was in existence — it had an idea but wasn’t sure how realistic it was to bring the concept to fruition. Company leaders realized they’d need a bespoke solution that was capable of handling data in multiple formats.
Working with digital partner Coherence, Close Brothers set to work building the SME Data Hub. Together, the teams decided that building a new section within the website to house the Hub would be the best approach; the website already has a strong organic ranking on Google and generated 50,000+ sessions every month.
Close Brothers shared the Hub’s beta version with key publications and known journalists to get their feedback. Initial reactions were all very positive, and most agreed there was nothing like this in the market, helping them understand how useful the Hub would be.
The Hub currently contains data collected from UK SMEs since 2016. Users can filter by date, industry, gender, location, company size and turnover, and new data is added every four months.
All data is also tagged by topic so users can find exactly what they need. For example, users can quickly determine the view that Welsh manufacturers had about Brexit or that transport firms hold about COVID-19. Users can go as granular as they desire.
Data is displayed in an easy-to-understand chart or table, and users can share the data on social media or download it as an image file. Users can also compare the answers from the same question to different time periods with a simple click of their mouse.
Building the Hub on Acquia Site Studio, Close Brothers was able to add a new feature within its existing website framework. This meant the company didn't need a new system or logins, or to manage a new website or interface.
Since the SME Data Hub launched in May 2020, its data has seen more than 8,500 unique pageviews, and the average time users spend on the Hub is more than double the rest of the website.
In addition, the site’s Google ranking has improved by almost 9% since the Hub was launched. The SME Data Hub won awards for best Website Creativity Infographics and Website Creativity Interactive at the DotComm Awards 2020