Sitecore Microsites - Welsh Water Sitecore Microsites Kagool

Welsh Water - Sitecore microsite tool

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Kagool helps Welsh Water produce Sitecore Microsites without the need for technical know how.

Improvement

Stethoscope

On analytics and reporting

£10,000

Floppy Disk

Cost savings of at least £10,000 per microsite

£40,000

SC Card

Saved on creating Welsh Water's members site

Better Security

Builder

And conformity with ITil

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water

Welsh Water have over three million customers. Every day they supply 828 million litres of water. 

They are the 4th largest company in Wales employing 2,400 people. 

We've worked with Welsh Water since being selected as their long term digital partner in April 2014.

We have five or six microsites and each of them incur hosting, maintenance and update costs. Once we have brought this capability in-house, we will be looking at further annual savings.

Rhian Morris Welsh Water

The Challenge

Welsh Water are a long-term Sitecore customer.

The key challenge was for us to find a way for Welsh Water to be able to create Sitecore microsites quickly, securely and cost effectively.

This would make Welsh Water more agile in their communication to customers, lead to substantial cost savings and a better ROI.

They don’t have Sitecore development skills in-house so our solution had to be easy for the Welsh Water content editors to create and use.  

Speed to build was an important cost saving consideration.

Welsh Water also needed a new members’ microsite. Their existing members’ area sat outside the Sitecore CMS and had its own URL.

Welsh Water felt it was important to create a secure area in Sitecore with a member login to access secure information.

At the same time there was an opportunity to streamline administrative procedures and improve the user experience for members accessing content.

We knew that Sitecore offered a lot more functionality and capabilities we had not explored but we did not have the skills in house to exploit it fully

Rhian Morris, Welsh Water

The Approach

Our approach was to empower Welsh Waters content editors. We needed to make it easy for them to use Sitecore to rapidly create microsites. So we designed and built a microsite toolkit integrated into Welsh Waters Sitecore CEP.

The first use of the tool was going to be for a Welsh Waters Members’ microsite.

This involved some complexity. It had to give members a secure log on with online notification of meetings, the ability to easily download key information and functionality to respond to any member blogs in a safe and secure environment. 

The microsite toolkit was up to the task.

One click automatically creates a complete blank Microsite in the Content Tree with everything that would be needed via custom Sitecore Branch Templates.

This includes all code and items for:

  • Events listing and detail page
  • News listing and detail page
  • Resources listing
  • Log in functionality
  • Blogs and comments
  • Standard content pages
  • With each component added to or removed if required

Each microsite is Sitecore DMS ready with its own security rules, user accounts and roles which it can share with any other Welsh Water Sitecore site.

The theme of the site can be created by content editors in Sitecore using a unique styling tool.

Editors can reuse all assets from any other site in Sitecore such as page items, data items, media and web forms. For example a case study can appear on both sites but the comments from the microsite users are only shown on the microsite. 

The microsite can exist on its own domain or a subdomain. All of this can be done without the need for a developer with the exception of setting the domain against the site in configuration files.

The resulting sites are robust and feature great UI - including parallax scroll and responsive design.

Alongside the development of the toolkit we worked with Welsh Water to understand their business strategy, customers and current traffic. This means any new microsites can deliver optimum business returns.

Welsh Water Sitecore Microsites project timeline

  • Discovery

    Understanding the pain points of new microsite launches that Welsh Water go through each time a new Sitecore microsite is needed


  • Creative Design

    We put crayons to paper and the team created some fab new designs. We looked into our crystal ball to make sure our designs would match microsites yet to be created or even thought up

  • Planning

    It was a tough call but together we planned the delivery of the tool and microsite in line with a 7 week deadline! Tough call – who agreed to that timeline!

  • Build

    Our talented developers completed the build within two sprints with 3 weeks to tweak , test and launch

  • Think Tank UAT Session

    Face to face joint UAT sessions closed the test cycle down quickly.  Always best to talk these things through together

  • Go Live

    We got there in line with timescales ! – phew that was a challenge but we got there.  It’s all about teamwork

Summary and next steps

Welsh Water can now consolidate their content management within Sitecore. This is significant as more sites are bought into Sitecore.

Welsh Water have a lot more flexibility in creating and editing content for microsites. 

The members’ microsite has increased Welsh Waters engagement with their members. 

It offers them increased functionality and a much improved user experience. The initial feedback from members has been very positive. 

Welsh Water now conform to ITiL and have better compliance with their security regulations. They are no longer relying on third parties to keep customer information safe. 

Instead of requesting reports about key analytics Welsh Water can simply query whatever they need to, when they need to. They can use analytics to really understand customer behaviours, journeys and make improvements. 

As Welsh Waters’ digital partner we are working with them on several new initiatives to help improve their engagement with customers. 

These include: 

  • Rebuilding their corporate site to be responsive for mobile and tablet users Launching an instant alert feature.
  • Users will subscribe to receive email alerts whenever an incident occurs within their area. They will automatically get updates through to the incident being resolved
  • Lock

    Create faster, cheaper microsites

  • Search

    Greater site governance and security

  • Web

    Manage content editing in-house

  • Pen

    Improve the visibility of each microsite's performance

In our selection process Kagool stood out from the rest of the organisations. In every example that they gave us they were able to demonstrate capability. They were able to demonstrate benefit.

We liked the approach that they had with other clients. The honesty, transparency and the fact that they did what they said on the tin, without outsourcing any of the skills. And they were keen to work with us and up-skill our workforce.

Rhian Morris Welsh Water

Want to make Sitecore Microsites quickly yourself?

We won a Sitecore award building this for Welsh Water. We would love to let you to do the same. What have you got to lose?

Contact us