The relaunched InvestItol.com site now features enhanced content to give individuals more focused information, specifically relevant to their age range and level of investing experience.
Washington Mutual is relaunching its Invest1to1.com investor education Web site with enhanced content in an effort to give individuals more focused information, specifically relevant to their age range and level of investing experience.
The site, which was originally launched in May, gives all investors--not just Washington Mutual customers--free access to tools such as a risk profiler, goal estimator, savings planner, asset allocator and other wealth management programs. While one of the goals in designing the site was not to overwhelm visitors with Washington Mutual sales pitches, the site does contain links to other Washington Mutual sites where securities can be purchased.
Juvare, Inc., a financial e-strategy company, designed the site, along with Washington Mutual, while the actual nuts and bolts were put together by Webmotion using its Webdeployer software. Genevive Smith, senior vp of Mortgage Banking and Financial Services Marketing with Washington Mutual, says that as a result of using Webdeployer, the site has a "a very dynamic open source which allows for really complex integration with XML."
Melanie Donaghy, president of Juvare, says, "The Web site was designed to empower investors to educate themselves without being bludgeoned by product." Donaghy says that tracking tools on the site give Washington Mutual the ability to adjust its content according to what people are looking at and looking for. All tracking is done on an anonymous basis, but using such data allows the site managers to highly tailor their content.
Information on the site is delivered dynamically. That is accomplished by obtaining data from visitors about their age and level of experience with investing so that they may be presented with appropriate content. Experience levels range from absolute beginner to occasional investor to advanced investor, along with four age levels from which to choose.
While most of the information on the site relates to products that Washington Mutual offers, there are some areas, such as hedge funds, where information is provided without a corresponding Washington Mutual product.
Smith says that Washington Mutual should be offering a new application in September called Interactive Stock Analyzer, which will allow people to enter their current portfolio or a proposed portfolio, and compare its performance against the S&P 500. Smith adds that the educational Web site is driving activity to other Washington Mutual sites where securities can be purchased. "We are getting a lot of traffic that way from our customers," she says. "That was the intent--to provide an education site for people and to keep our customers doing business with us."