In recent years, ING has gained tremendous popularity (particularly Stateside) by offering consumers what they want in a financial institution: very competitive ROI rates and reliable service. ING’s mission is, quite simply, to “deliver our financial products and services in the way our customers expect: with exemplary service, maximum convenience and at competitive rates”; its strategy is composed of just two words, “execution and growth.” We paid a visit to ING.com to see if it brought the same no-nonsense, results-driven sensibility to its online presence.
When it comes to financial institutions, consumers tend to be impressed by a straightforward approach. At first glance, ING.com (the global site) is all business, providing easy access to lots of features through the home page in addition to the standard stuff, such as share performance, shareholder’s news, access to webcasts, press releases and such. ING earns your trust by putting it all out where you can easily find it, not burying pertinent financial information behind layers of introductory mish-mash.
ING.com remains all business throughout, serving up a convenient user experience with easy access to information at every turn. Users can conveniently access the Personal Finance section, find other ING websites or locate contact information by choosing a country from the pull-down menu.
The About Us page provides links to static pages outlining the brand’s profile, history, mission statement, and business principals, as well as a glossary and FAQ. It also has a few minor bells and whistles, such as a virtual tour of the ING house (the company’s headquarters in Amsterdam), an office structure with unique architectural elements based on the principles of “transparency”—yet another execution of the brand that falls in line with its straightforward messaging.
As cool as this building is, there’s nothing fancy about the site’s look, structure or navigation. Each page may not be a celebration of aesthetics, but does contain information that is organized and up to date, which is far more relevant when it comes to banking and investments. It was designed as a portal for standard corporate information, and serves its purpose with content such as a Corporate Governance section, Investor Relations, and a Press Room.
The Corporate Responsibility page goes one step further in supporting ING’s trustworthy brand message by outlining its principles and policies for consumers. The page includes a downloadable Corporate Responsibility report that outlines the role it plays with clients, employees, shareholders, business partners, and society at large.
Demonstrative of its community involvement, users can also find out how to contact ING about sponsoring with a dedicated page. It contains links to an order page for ING publications, a subscription request for an email news service, and a link that launches a Careers site.
Is ING.com exciting? Not really. Design-wise, the site could be a little slicker and more modern. Each site section launches in separate windows, which is kind of archaic. But its focus on content rather than pomp and circumstance falls right in line with ING’s brand sensibility. After all, a financial brand should be more about what it has to offer consumers rather than the platter it offers it on; and ING achieves this end with a solid, competent online offering.