Accelerating digital development for a sector-leading property portal
Zoopla is one of the UK’s leading online property portals, attracting over 70 million visits a month. To stay ahead in a competitive digital marketplace, Zoopla is continually developing its digital platform and proposition to deliver an unrivalled experience for customers.
With pressing targets to launch a more intuitive digital experience for customers, Zoopla needed to scale up its in-house digital capability. Zoopla asked us to bring our wide-ranging digital expertise in cloud, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and digital product development to accelerate its digital ambitions.
Working alongside Zoopla teams, we rapidly developed new digital products for customers, providing superior features and services to support a customer’s home search or sale. Our collaboration enabled Zoopla to enhance its sector-leading position and revitalise the underpinning technology that will support the company’s future growth.
- Rapidly developed an enhanced user experience across Zoopla’s core product including enhanced SEO and property search Shaped the strategy for ‘My Home’ a new market-leading proposition for homeowners
- Returned Zoopla to sector-leading webpage speed by revitalising underpinning technology
- Developed a web performance monitoring tool, and upskilled Zoopla engineers to maintain sector-leading web performance as new digital features are introduced
- Identified longer-term opportunities for improving digital operations and optimising cloud resources, leveraging the latest AWS services.
Accelerating development and revitalising technology
Zoopla is continually adding new functionality to its website and app to offer customers unrivalled support with their home search or sale. As the website and app evolve, Zoopla must keep optimising performance to maintain a great user experience and drive business growth.
Central to Zoopla’s strategy was simplifying the information architecture and navigation and improving user experience across its core product. The homepage and other high-traffic pages needed immediate attention to improve conversion rates and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). With plans for further development entering an intensive phase, Zoopla also needed an expert digital partner to review its value proposition and advise on the structure of its product organisation.
Identifying and implementing quick wins
Zoopla was concerned that new features on its website were slowing down functionality and impacting web performance. Our digital experts worked closely alongside the Zoopla team to investigate the problem – with daily stand-ups and weekly progress checks.
Our joint team used a suite called Core Web Vitals to prioritise key performance metrics. We developed a long list of opportunities for improvement, and collaboratively implemented a shortlist of quick wins. These enabled Zoopla’s pages to load faster and within three weeks, Zoopla’s page speed had returned to the highest ranking in the sector.
To help Zoopla maintain its leading position, we provided a built-in monitoring tool. This enabled Zoopla to test how any new web features might impact key metrics, so that the team can adjust functionality before launch.
Taking a longer view – and enhancing plans for growth
Once the quick wins had been achieved, Zoopla asked us to address several other initiatives to improve its digital operations and user experience. We mobilised five product teams – a total of 40 individuals across product management, technical, quality engineering, and delivery – to work hand in hand with Zoopla’s existing teams to accelerate the development of several new products. These included a new version of the Zoopla app, enhanced user experience and search tools across property sales, rentals, house prices, and a ‘My Home’ product that enables customers to keep market insights in one place.
By collaborating closely with the Zoopla team, we were able to bring our digital, cloud, and development expertise to bear quickly – and with concrete results. Zoopla saw improved click through and conversion rates for core customer journeys and enhanced SEO, driving Zoopla's Google rankings to historic highs for business critical and highly competitive searches. And by sharing our knowledge, Zoopla has enhanced capability for developing new products, sustaining web performance, and managing its cloud arrangements. That capability will enable Zoopla to retain its sector-leading position, and continue to support its plans for growth.