Generating engagement around solar performance

PVEL is the industry leader in reliability and performance testing for solar technology. The company provides a suite of technical services to mitigate risk, optimize financing, and improve system performance. It is known for its annual PV Module Reliability Scorecard.

Launched in 2014 and now in its 8th Edition, the Scorecard summarizes results from the PV Module Product Qualification Program (PQP), a testing regime that PVEL established in 2012 to provide empirical data for PV module benchmarking and project-level energy yield and financial models.

Our scope of work

  • Information Architecture
  • Content Creation
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Art Direction
  • UI Design
  • UX Design
  • Front-end Development
  • Marketing Automation Integration
  • Analytics Integration

The Challenge

PVEL has successfully created an industry-leading report used by OEMs, financial institutions, and developers. Our challenge was to explore ways to create excitement around their latest annual PV Module Reliability Scorecard that resulted in tangible lead generation from their network of developers, investors, and asset owners.

The primary business needs we defined:

  • Implement conversion-driven functionality to increase the number of OEMs testing with PVEL
  • Increase user interactivity and engagement across the site, generating longer site visits (time on site) by users
  • Create a more user-centric information architecture that made it easier for visitors to better understand the benefits of testing, search and view Top Performers, and how to effectively use the data and rankings of the Scorecards 
  • Deliver a user-friendly and responsive web design

UI/UX Techniques

  • Business Analysis
  • User Interviews
  • Surveys
  • Secondary Research
  • Competitive/Comparative Analysis
  • Affinity Mapping
  • User Flows
  • User Archetypes
  • Site Map
  • Sketching
  • Wireframing
  • Usability Testing

Our scope of work

Information Architecture
Content Creation
Search Engine Optimization
Art Direction
UI Design
UX Design
Front-end Development
Marketing Automation Integration
Analytics Integration

The Challenge

PVEL has successfully created an industry-leading report used by OEMs, financial institutions, and developers. Our challenge was to explore ways to create excitement around their latest annual PV Module Reliability Scorecard that resulted in tangible lead generation from their network of developers, investors, and asset owners.

The primary business needs we defined:

  • Implement conversion-driven functionality to increase the number of OEMs testing with PVEL
  • Increase user interactivity and engagement across the site, generating longer site visits (time on site) by users
  • Create a more user-centric information architecture that made it easier for visitors to better understand the benefits of testing, search and view Top Performers, and how to effectively use the data and rankings of the Scorecards 
  • Deliver a user-friendly and responsive web design

UI/UX Techniques

Business Analysis
User Interviews
Surveys
Secondary Research
Competitive/Comparative Analysis
Affinity Mapping
User Flows
User Archetypes
Site Map
Sketching
Wireframing
Usability Testing

affinity mapping

The Research

BKO started this project by conducting user interviews with key PVEL stakeholders, customers, and partners. We created three surveys based on the user targets whose point-of-view were critical to the success of the microsite:

  • Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEMs)
  • PV Module Buyers 
  • Asset Owners, & Investors

To best understand how to display the Scorecard results, we needed to identify how users wanted to consume the findings and what they were doing with the information once they had it in hand.

Our primary focus during the research stage was to get qualitative data that highlighted unidentified issues that may have been overlooked so that we could be confident in our design decisions.

We surveyed 20 participants and conducted twelve user interviews. To identify common themes in the data we collected, we used affinity mapping.

Moving forward, we deepened our analysis of the website by completing a content inventory/audit and conducting a heuristics evaluation based on Jakob Nielsen’s Usability Heuristics.

To ensure that we created a user-friendly information architecture, we performed a hybrid card sort where we had set categories that users could organize the cards into and also allowed users to create their own categories. The feedback from the card sort resulted in the navigation structure in the diagram above.

After all the competitive analysis and research phase, we transitioned into visual design by developing a mood board that communicated the artistic direction of the site.

The Solution

Once the art direction was approved, our next step was to design a site that exceeded the definedsuccess metrics: drive traffic, engage prospects, re-engage existing customers, and generate leads from manufacturers to participate in the next Scorecard.

Our team leveraged UI/UX best practices focused on simplicity, user engagement, and conversion optimization.

We prioritized logical structure, intuitive menus, advanced information architecture, and calls to action.

As a result, PVEL saw an increase in goal conversions and engagement that led to offline conversations and more qualified sales prospects.

BKO work: Homepage of website developed for PVEL's 2022 PV Module Reliability Scorecard

Our team leveraged UI/UX best practices focused on simplicity, user engagement, and conversion optimization.

We prioritized logical structure, intuitive menus, advanced information architecture, and calls to action.

As a result, PVEL saw an increase in goal conversions and engagement that led to offline conversations and more qualified sales prospects.

BKO work: Homepage of website developed for PVEL's 2022 PV Module Reliability Scorecard

Use engagement achieved.

15%
Organic Traffic.
23%
Time on Site.
20%
Report Downloads.
10%
Bounce Rate.
5%
Goal Conversions.
30%
Page Speed.
BKO partner: Tristan Erion-Lorico, PVEL

BKO’s approach to an interactive sortable database, conversion-centered design, and strategic information architecture has set a new bar for this type of industry report. Their collaboration and attentive focus to our goals helped us achieve our key metrics for this initiative.

Tristan Erion-Lorico • VP of Sales & Marketing, PVEL

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