Investor Relations Website Best Practices for 2020
18 June 2020
By Amy Statham
The most powerful investor relations websites are the ones that successfully tell your investment story by providing investors with compelling and informative context that ultimately influences their decision to invest. While providing financial data and reports is important, what separates the truly exemplary sites from the mediocre is a focus on providing context on the company’s strategy and clarity, as well as execution and vision.
Like a well-written book, investor relations websites should drive a compelling narrative that will resonate with the investor and holds their attention. The best websites are ones that seamlessly move users through its flow – investors should be able to move through your IR website so that they leave knowing the essential elements of your brand story, objectives, and vision. Website user experience is more important than ever. Two of the most essential elements of a good website experience is:
- Easy access to media
Since mobile viewing has surpassed desktop, it’s critical to consider how information is conveyed on this medium. New technology creates new expectations, meaning elements of your company story should be prioritized differently on mobile versus desktop. For instance, you may prioritize events on your mobile site over reports, since you know based on website analytics that your users view your calendar on mobile, but they aren’t so keen to view a PDF. As with the desktop view, your main goal is to ensure your investors walk away knowing more about your company – so it’s essential to know what types of information your audience is gravitating towards on each device.
Company Information and Strategy
Your company information and strategy sections make up the narrative of your corporate story. Potential investors look to this content to gain a sense of your company’s strategy, values, goals, and accomplishments. You want to ensure these areas showcase your company brand and story with compelling text and visual elements. The key is to keep your story engaging and concise so that your investors can get a sense of who you are at a quick glance.
Here are some different types of content and website sections to include to effectively tell your company story:
- About us section
- Investment proposition
- Video and infographics
Access to Financial Data
While compliance requires the inclusion of regulatory filings and some governance information, providing access to financial information is more than just about remaining compliant. Your financial information provides investors with vital context that will help them make decisions about investing in your company. While your corporate narrative is about more than just the numbers, your financials – and the tools you use to feed investors with quantitative information – are important in mapping out your achievements, goals, and challenges.
The following are best practices that serve to tell your past and present corporate story, while enhancing communication with investors:
- Archived financial reports
- SEC filings (U.S.) / SEDAR (Canada) / Regulatory News (Europe)
- Online annual reports
Corporate Social Responsibility
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives have become a standard for public companies globally and across all sectors. Also known as environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives or sustainable, responsible and impact investing (SRI), CSR has moved beyond a “nice to have” within a public company’s corporate narrative. For investors, these consumer expectations translate to key drivers of revenue, which ultimately influence their investment decisions. CSR, like other elements of your corporate story, demonstrates your company’s core values, goals, and position within your market – all elements that investors consider when assessing your company’s future revenue potential.
Technology and storytelling have never been so intertwined. As your primary storytelling vehicle, investor relations websites are most effective when investors are able to consume content in ways that are intuitive, multi-channel, visual, and meaningful. The best practices in this whitepaper represent the latest trends in communicating your company’s vision with investors: intuitive use, mobile, company information and strategy, access to financial information, and corporate social responsibility initiatives are all pillars that feed into a robust, compelling corporate narrative. When you follow these best practices, you will ensure your IR website’s place as the primary source of information for your investor and analyst audiences.
To learn how to turn your IR website into a destination for investors and key stakeholders, download our whitepaper featuring industry statistics and case studies from some of the world’s largest organizations, here.