'We created a new solution and ordered the concept, technical implementation and visual design for the Kesko.fi website from the same supplier,' stated Harri Utoslahti, Communication Manager at Kesko.
Head of CEM
Serving mainly job applicants, investors and media, the Kesko.fi website was last overhauled in 2010. Kesko wanted to reconstruct the site to conform with today's technology, user habits and mobile use requirements.
The focus of the concept was to improve the user experience by streamlining the website. Responsive design was used to ensure a good user experience on mobile devices. In addition, Kesko wanted to present their new branding more effectively – to take the visual design to a new level and to increase the role of social media on the website.
'The new website provides a good platform for showcasing our impressive brand appearance and our high-quality photographic material, while also supporting the visual narrative. We have already received a lot of good feedback. In addition, Kesko.fi now acts as the home base for a dialogue we are having in social media channels and on the blog,' stated Utoslahti.
Tieto's conceptualisation started from a completely blank slate. Technical implementers joined the design process at the early stages, so everyone had a joint understanding of what was supposed to be achieved.
'Tieto's team had a lot of good ideas, particularly regarding user focus and mobile use,' Utoslahti stated.
Locality and responsibility highlighted
The presentation of the most recent content on the website was totally rethought from a new, themed angle.
'The idea of dividing the content into themes came off-the-cuff from Tieto's team,' stated Utoslahti.
In particular, there was a desire to give the local news and corporate responsibility sections a more prominent role. Local news has always been one of the most popular sections on the website, but previously users had to navigate through several sections to access it.
'We wanted to enable users to find local news more quickly. The corporate responsibility section, on the other hand, is no longer just one separate section but now seamlessly integrated throughout the website, including in the careers section,' stated Utoslahti.
There is a lot of traffic to the careers section of the Kesko.fi website. The concept and content production of the vacancies section were also significantly modified.
'We wanted to overhaul the entire way in which Kesko speaks of itself as an employer and thus appeal to younger applicants,' added Utoslahti.
On the old website, information that interests investors – such as materials dealing with financial performance – was scattered. Another idea that came up during the project was to present all investor materials in a dedicated report centre.
Vision supported by user interviews
Visitor statistics were studied at the concept stage to improve usability. The result was that the most popular content was positioned more prominently and some of the old pages were scrapped completely.
'Today’s users want to navigate websites quickly. They no longer have the patience to study content for a long time. In the concept phase, we paid particular attention to clear, quick navigation,' stated Utoslahti.
The preferences and habits of users were also studied through user surveys among key user groups. The surveys confirmed the vision of Kesko and Tieto of the direction that the site update should take.
Good co-operation continues
Utoslahti explained that the update brought the Kesko.fi website to a completely new level, and a new version of the publishing system EpiServer provided the flexibility needed for its design. The website update was, however, only one phase in an ongoing development process.
'We collected several ideas for future development in the course of the project. For example, the search function is still under development. Next, we will connect our Pinterest and Instagram accounts to the social media feeds.'
According to Utoslahti, cooperation with Tieto was fruitful and constructive. Despite the tight schedule, the quality of the work left nothing to desire.
'Throughout the project, work progressed smoothly and successfully. Both sides contributed ideas. We had strong views and received many innovative suggestions from Tieto. A large number of very highly skilled professionals were involved.'
Kesko is a company providing services in the trade industry. It is also a retail expert. Its chains include approximately 2,000 stores in the Nordic countries, the Baltic countries, Russia and Belarus. More than 1,000 stores are run by local K-retailers. Kesko is among the 100 most responsible companies in the world. The company efficiently provides services for purchasing, logistics, network development and data management in its retail store chains. Kesko was elected the world's fifth most sustainable corporation (The Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World 2015).