October 17, 2006 at 08:01 AM EDT
Banking Web Sites Gain Business Advantage With Keynote Competitive Research

Keynote Competitive Research, the industry analysis group of Keynote Systems (Nasdaq:KEYN), today announced the release of three new competitive research studies for the online banking industry. Together, the studies offer extensive detail on the performance and competitive positioning of 29 leading banking Web sites.

Keynote Competitive Research produces leading edge competitive industry research that leverages the companys global measurement computer network and commercially available Internet test and measurement products. Keynote Competitive Research regularly evaluates the current state of online customer experience, service levels (responsiveness/reliability) and implementation of best practices of leading Web sites across a variety of industries including financial services, travel and retail. Industry studies and Web performance indices from Keynote Competitive Research are available for purchase. To download research abstracts for Keynotes studies please visit www.keynote.com.

Keynote WebExcellence Scorecard for Banks

The Keynote WebExcellence Scorecard for Banks, a bi-annual study, uses a framework of expertly developed criteria to measure the functionality of leading online banking sites against a set of 300+ industry best practices. The Scorecard evaluates sites in a variety of industry-specific tasks and categories, and examines all areas of a site, to help banks discover the strengths of their sites, as well as opportunities for improvement.

The Scorecard evaluates bank sites across key general categories such as Functionality,Ease of Use, Privacy & Security and Quality & Availability, as well as across specific online banking related tasks such as opening accounts, viewing account details and executing an online banking transaction.

"The Keynote WebExcellence Scorecard for Banks is an essential tool for banks that are interested in determining what aspects of their sites have the biggest impact on their business and what challenges and opportunities need to be addressed to gain the competitive edge, said Susan Foulds, senior consultant and manager of the WebExcellence Scorecard for Banks with Keynote.

The Keynote Customer Experience Rankings for Banking Web Sites

The Keynote Customer Experience Rankings for Banking Web Sites examines the online experience of more than 2,000 banking customers as they interacted with both the public and the secure online banking areas of ten leading bank Web sites. The study details how each site performs versus competitors across key business objectives, including customer acquisition, utilizing a rigorous statistical driver analysis that details what comprises success in each of these areas. The study also offers banks specific, actionable steps they can take to improve their online business performance, with a particular focus on improving customer satisfaction, brand affinity and customer acquisition. (Keynote also annually conducts a study solely focused on prospective customers interacting with the public areas of banking sites.)

The Keynote Customer Experience Rankings for Banking Web Sites provides competitive rankings of the leading bank Web sites in terms of customer satisfaction, brand preference and customer acquisition success and outlines the key areas of site performance, such as customer support and online bill pay satisfaction, that have the most impact on a Web sites success in these areas. The study captures more than 250+ metrics for each site that are distilled into rankings for dozens of critical categories including online bill pay satisfaction and privacy & security, as well as the overall design and visual appeal of the site. Further, the study examines why the most successful sites succeed in these areas and offers specific, actionable steps banks can take to improve performance.

Keynotes technology and research methodology offers a unique view into both customer attitudes and behavior by questioning customers and examining their online behavior as they interact with each site performing tasks assigned by Keynote from their own home or office environment. By combining the best techniques of Web analytics research with the best of traditional market research, Keynote provides deep and comprehensive insights into online customer behavior and satisfaction. By capturing these insights Keynote is able to develop competitive rankings in the most critical areas of online business success and make specific actionable recommendations for improving the overall business effectiveness of each site included in a study.

Keynotes Customer Experience Rankings studies offer banks a unique and detailed understanding of how customers interact with and view their site and their competitors sites, said Steve Foster, director of competitive research for Keynote. Keynote competitive research offers insight that no other product can offer to help improve online customer acquisition and customer satisfaction with online banking.

Keynote Service Level Rankings for Banking Web Sites

The Keynote Service Level Rankings for Banking Web Sites examines the technical performance of leading bank Web sites, including load handling, site responsiveness and reliability. The study uses Keynotes Transaction Perspective® product, the leading subscription-based service for measuring/monitoring Web site performance from multiple geographic locations, to mimic the actions of consumers and collect more than 6,500 data points detailing the online technical performance of each site included in the study.

The study offers banks insight into their technical performance relative to other banks and other financial services industries, and provides detailed data on site performance across seven key measures critical to the operational health of an online banking site. Specifically, the study provides performance data and competitive rankings in site reliability (including site availability and outages) and site responsiveness, including load handling, response time consistency, geographic consistency and responsiveness over both high-speed (DSL) and low-speed connections.

Overall, the study captures data and ranks sites on more than 40 performance metrics. The extensive data is captured from measurement computers located in key markets across the country, using both high-speed and low-speed connections, and measured over a full months time to ensure the most accurate picture of performance is gathered.

The infrastructure and effort put into Keynotes service level measurement and monitoring research is difficult to replicate, said Ben Rushlo, manager of professional services for Keynote. Keynote offers the most detailed, most accurate measure of online operational performance available. Its a tool most CIOs in the financial services industry find indispensable.

Bank of America, Citibank Rank as Best Online Banking Web Sites

Bank of America was ranked as the #1 site among all online banking sites in the Keynote WebExcellence Scorecard for Banks, performing best, in aggregate, across all 300+ industry best practices for site functionality evaluated in the study. The Citibank site ranked second in the Keynote WebExcellence Scorecard study.

Citibank was ranked as the #1 site in the Keynote Customer Experience Rankings for Banking Web Sites, with the best overall ranking across the 250+ customer experience and customer satisfaction metrics measured in the study. As a result of its strong overall performance, Citibank was also ranked as the best site at acquiring new customers online.

Keynote Customer Experience Rankings

(Overall Customer Satisfaction and Experience)

Keynote WebExcellence Scorecard

(Overall Online Excellence and Implementation of Best Practices)

1Citibank1Bank of America
Keynote Service Level Rankings

Site Reliability

(Indicator of Being Highly Available, Low Downtime)

Keynote Service Level Rankings

Site Responsiveness

(Indicator of How Quickly Pages Loaded, Transactions Completed)

1Bank of America1Bank of America

Bank of America and Citibank both performed very well in both the Keynote Customer Experience and the Keynote Scorecard studies, indicating both had strong performance both in implementing best practices and in the customer feedback they received, said Chris Musto, general manager, financial services for Keynote. And we see strong evidence that this success translates into success in acquiring customers online. Others in the online banking industry would do well to take notice of Bank of America and Citibanks success and take action to stay competitive.

Bank of America also ranked #1 in the Keynote Service Level Rankings for Banking Web Sites in both the overall site responsiveness and reliability categories. Bank of America and Citibank had the industrys best reliability, indicating those sites were highly available and experienced little or no downtime and Bank of America had the industrys best site responsiveness, an indication of how fast banking sites were in downloading pages and executing transactions.

Full rankings for each study and further detailed data and analysis are available in the full studies, which are all available for purchase.

Banks Included in the Studies

The Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Chase (NYSE:JPM), Citibank (NYSE:C), National City (NYSE:NCC), PNC Bank, SunTrust (NYSE:STI), US Bank (NYSE:USB), Wachovia (NYSE:WB), Washington Mutual (NYSE:WM) and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) Web sites were evaluated for the Keynote Customer Experience Rankings for Banking Web Sites and The Keynote Service Level Rankings for Banking Web Sites.

In addition to the banks listed above, the following bank sites were included in the Keynote WebExcellence Scorecard: BB&T (NYSE:BBT), Citizens Bank (LSE:RBS), Commerce Bank (Nasdaq:CBSH), E*Trade Bank (NYSE:ET), Fifth Third Bank (Nasdaq:FITB), First National Bank, First Tennessee Bank (NYSE:NHN), Hibernia National Bank (Capital One) HSBC (NYSE:HBC), Huntington (Nasdaq:HBAN), Key Bank (NYSE:KEY), LaSalle Bank, M&I Bank (NYSE:MI), National City (NYSE:NCC), NetBank (Nasdaq:NYBK), PNC (NYSE:PNC), Regions Bank (NYSE:RF), Sovereign Bank (NYSE:SOV), SunTrust Bank (NYSE:STI), TD Banknorth (NYSE:BNK), Union Bank of California (NYSE:UB), US Bank (NYSE:USB), Wachovia (NYSE:WB), Washington Mutual (NYSE:WM) and Webster Bank (NYSE:WBS).

Keynote Technology Behind the Studies

To conduct its competitive industry research, Keynote uses its commercially available test and measurement products. Keynote customer experience studies employ Keynote WebEffective, an on-demand software platform for conducting in-depth user experience research which integrates the best aspects of usability, behavior and attitudinal research. Keynote service level ranking studies use the Keynote Transaction Perspective® measurement product to evaluate key performance indicators, including responsiveness and reliability, for Web sites in the study.

For more information about Keynotes Competitive Research offerings view:

http://www.keynote.com/solutions/competitive_intelligence_tpl.html

For an abstract of the Keynote Competitive Research Studies on Banking Web sites view:

http://www.keynote.com/solutions/ci_banking.html

For information on purchasing a Keynote Competitive research study please email sales@keynote.com or call 1-800-KEYNOTE (539-6683).

About Keynote

Keynote Systems (Nasdaq "KEYN") is the global test and measurement company for mobile communications and online business performance. As an independent and trusted third-party, Keynote provides IT and marketing executives with an unbiased view into their Internet services from around the world. For over a decade, we have been providing measurement data and testing capabilities that allow companies to understand and improve their customers online and mobile experience. Keynote has four test and measurement businesses: Web performance, mobile quality, streaming & VoIP, and customer experience/UX. In addition, our industry analysis group called Keynote Competitive Research publishes proprietary studies measuring customer experience and service levels across a wide range of industries.

Known as The Mobile and Internet Performance Authority®, Keynote has a market-leading infrastructure of 2,400 measurement computers and mobile devices in over 240 geographic locations around the world. Keynote also maintains one of the most representative panels of online users consisting of 160,000 consumers. Our on-demand, hassle-free infrastructure allows business to access services they need, when they need them to pinpoint and fix mobile quality and Internet problems before they impact customers.

We help over 2,600 corporate customers become "the best of the best" by helping them improve online business performance and mobile communications quality. Our customers represent top Internet and mobile companies including American Express, BP, Caterpillar, Dell, Disney, eBay, ESPN Mobile, E*TRADE, Expedia, FedEx, Microsoft, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon and Vodafone.

Keynote Systems, Inc. is headquartered in San Mateo, California, and can be reached at www.keynote.com or by travel in the U.S. at (650) 403-2400.

Keynote, The Internet Performance Authority, The Mobile and Internet Performance Authority and Perspective are registered trademarks of Keynote Systems, Inc. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. © 2006 Keynote Systems, Inc.

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