Fidelity, MassMutual Web Sites Earn Top Dalbar Honors
Despite a strong challenge from New York Life, Fidelity Investments retained its position as the best-rated consumer Web site among life insurance and annuity providers during the 2nd quarter of 2004, according to Dalbar Inc.
Among sites aimed at professional financial advisors, Massachusetts Mutual Life showed an impressive gain to replace Hartford Life Insurance Company in the top spot, according to Dalbar, Boston, a research firm that evaluates financial companies? online presence.
A number of company sites improved enough to earn Dalbar?s Excellent rating. Among consumer sites, Fidelity Investments, which has now held the Excellent designation for 14 straight quarters, was joined by New York Life.
Among professional sites, MassMutual and Lincoln Life were the only ones to earn the Excellent designation, which Dalbar reserves for sites scoring 80 or better in its 100-point ranking system.
Dalbar rates more than 200 financial Web sites on their ability to support the needs of online users. It evaluates each site on a variety of points, including:
Functionality, such as ability to provide a client?s account information.
Ease of use, including site speed and help in using the site.
Currency of content.
Consistency of appearance.
Ability to fit users? behavior.
Dalbar pointed to a number of improved consumer sites.
State Farm?s consumer site advanced 9 places during the quarter, largely due to a new “Banking Quick Tour” section. USAA Life advanced from 11th to 9th place with new tools to help consumers create personal financial plans and manage their portfolios. And Safeco jumped from 23rd to 18th place by adding more sales promotion to its site.
Dalbar also singled out Western Southern Life, AXA Financial and Thrivent Financial for a variety of improvements, such as easier navigation and a more convenient logon procedure.