25 Jan 2011

Investis IQ Corporate Website Ranking Q4 2010 – Social Media powers benchmarking revamp

The fourth quarter of 2010 saw a major overhaul of how Investis ranks European corporate websites. Several criteria were amended and there were changes in weighting to various categories, notably the CSR criteria were given more weight and Careers criteria saw a reduction. However, the most significant step change overall was to the Web 2.0 & Social Media category in that we are now giving much more prominence to how effectively companies are using social media.

While we examined aspects of social media before, we now also explore individual companies’ web presence outside of their corporate site – for example, by looking to see whether they have corporate Twitter, Facebook or YouTube channels. This shift in our methodology has led to some marked changes in scores. While like for like comparisons over time are now harder, we believe it is vital to take account of changes in the wider webscape to ensure that the IQ Ranking maintains its relevance.

The top level finding is that of the indices we ranked this quarter, the Swiss SMI20 continues to lead the field for social media. The SMI20 has scored the highest across Europe for Web 2.0 & Social Media since Q2 2009, while the FTSE250 continues to lag with 10% of companies failing to score in this category at all.

Nestlé is the highest scoring company in the category. Nestlé have had some bruising (and well documented) experiences with social media, but deserve credit for their concerted efforts to establish a presence across a variety of social media networks and for their recent launch of a corporate iPad and iPhone app.

Overall this quarter has seen the slowest rate of improvement since we began benchmarking in the autumn of 2008 – a mere 0.3%. The downward pull of the new social media scoring cannot be blamed entirely for this. Growth has been slow in other areas and every index has actually gone backwards in at least a quarter of the categories we cover. The only significant growth categories were Multimedia and Careers.

Highlights for Q4 in the index rankings

UK

FTSE250: The top two spots are now taken by Provident Financial and Atkins following Arriva’s delisting. New arrivals in the Top 10 are Balfour Beatty (up 8 places to #3), Mitie Group (up 12 places to #4) and Yell (up 29 places to #5) – as well as the Home Retail Group which joins the index at #6 from the FTSE100.

The FTSE250’s average score increased by a meagre 0.17% with the biggest category rises being seen in CSR and Multimedia. Scores declined in 8 of our 12 categories.

Germany

MDAX: Lanxess takes pole position from EADS, a spot it had occupied for over a year. Despite much shuffling in the order, there were no new entries to the Top 10. The two biggest risers in the index were Elringklinger (up 25 places to #21) and Deutsche Euroshop (up 11 places to #15).

The MDAX saw the greatest improvement of any of our indices, powered by an impressive surge in CSR of over 11%. However, nearly a quarter of the MDAX still fail to score in this category, proof of a widening gap between those who communicate CSR and those who do not. Over a fifth of MDAX companies improved their CSR scores: the companies named above led the charge, ably supported by Rational and Rhön-Klinikum. The MDAX also showed strong improvement in Careers.

Switzerland

SMI20: There were no new entries to the Top 10 and Roche, UBS and Swisscom kept their positions at #1, #2 and #3 respectively. The biggest climber, up 3 places to #6 was Credit Suisse – while the only new entrant to the index was the offshore drilling company Transocean, in at #18.

This index overall improved by less than 1%. The biggest improvement was seen in the use of Multimedia (5%) and Careers (3%).

Austria

ATX20: OMV comfortably retained its position at the top of the rankings of the ATX20, while Wienerberger leapfrogged Verbundgesellschaft and Telekom Austria into second place. Wienerberger also showed the most improvement in the index, while Raiffeisen Bank was the highest climber, moving from #13 to enter the Top 10 at #8.

The ATX20 saw no increase at all in its overall average score despite a strong improvement in Multimedia (+9%) and in Careers (+5%).
For more information on the IQ benchmarking service, please contact Al Loehnis on al.loehnis@investis.com, +44(0)207 038 9005 or visit http://www.investis.com/investis/aboutus/iqranking/

@Investis