Case Study: White label development for boutique investment house’s investor portal

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About the project

A boutique investment house needed an easy way to get documents to and from their clients. They also needed this investor portal to be both easy for investors to use and easy for portal admins who didn’t have a lot of tech-savvy.

Objectives for the Investor Portal:

  • Allow unlimited client accounts
  • Allow each client to login and view the client account(s) associated with them
  • Allow for multiple website users to view a specific client account and users to be able to be assigned to multiple client accounts
  • Allow for easy removal of a user from a client account
  • Allow for easy organization of files and storage of up to 5 years of files
  • Allow for file upload
  • Allow for central document area where all portal users could view these central documents
  • Allow for announcement to be sent to all portal users
  • Allow for private messaging system between portal admins & portal users

Requirements:

  • WordPress site
  • Responsive design
  • Easy for portal admins
  • Easy for portal users
  • Detailed user guide for portal admins
  • Quality Assurance
  • Speed Optimization

Defining Requirements

When the Agency brought us this project, they were in a bit over their head. They didn’t know what questions to ask or what would be involved.

We started with a design document, breaking down the functionality and discovering the truly needed functionality of the investor portal. With a few rounds of question & answer, we had a complete design document and firm quote & timeline for the Agency. The Investment House was so blown away by the level of detail and organization they signed the Agency’s contract immediately.

Building the Investor Portal

First, the client needed better hosting and a better theme. The Investment House was using cheap hosting with no backups or security. We got them moved to Flywheel hosting and changed out their theme and added a full security setup.

Users, Groups & Accounts

One of the challenging aspects was the need for multiple website users to view multiple accounts.

To solve this problem, Groups were used. Each individual website user could be assigned to one or many groups and then each group was assigned to exactly one account. This also resolved the issue for needing only logged in users to access the general downloads, all users were assigned to a group who could access that page.

File Storage

When we asked the client about how much file storage they would need, they really didn’t know, but thought likely quite a bit and that it would grow. They also needed to have users securely upload and download from just their own account.

We were dealing with regular people who were used to dragging & dropping, clicking, but not doing much fancier than that.

Announcements & Private Messages

Most online systems for financial matters allow you to message people and receive messages & announcements about your account. The key is that account details aren’t transmitted via email, instead, you receive an email letting you know you have a message.

Both private messages (which were restricted to between admin and regular user) and announcements were added. An admin could message all users of the site via an announcement, or just one user.

Detailed User Guide

It was quite possible that portal admins would go months without setting up a new user account, so documentation on how to set up an account was key. We built a 13-page user guide including screen captures and videos detailing each step in the setup process. We also updated their WordPress dashboard to display the link to the user guide as soon as they signed in.

Since users would also be going a couple of months between visits, we developed several videos for them and provided a lot of helpful links on the site.

Results

The site was delivered on the 6-week timeline and on budget. This boutique investment house now has just what they need to make their documents available to their clients.

After Delivery

Now that the site is delivered, they have both a design document and a portal admin user guide. But, far more importantly, they have trust in the Agency to take care of them moving forward and we’ve been retained to provide regular maintenance and support for the site. It’s a win all around.

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Case Study: What one Agency discovered when they got their sites managed

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Recently, we onboardedĀ a new Agency into a maintenance plan for their client sites. The agency thought they had things under control and were quite surprised when they discovered the truth.

The challenge

The biggest challenge was that the agency thought they had things under control. They were periodically updating sites, they even had a spreadsheet to let them know when they visited a site. This worked most of the time, however, from time to time clients would come to them saying a site was down or there was some other issue. They didn’t like that the client always had to tell them about things (and their clients didn’t like that either).

They had invested in improved hosting with Flywheel, which increased the stability and reduced the issues they had with hosting with their clients. So this agency was primed for moving to maintenance because they had already discovered some real wins by investing in better tools & services.

It really hit them they needed a better website management system when their accounting person needed to know which sites were using a particular premium plugin and they had no way to tell.

Onboarding 35 sites in 3 days

The agency expected that their sites would be needing updates when they moved to a maintenance plan, but they weren’t expecting to find that half their sites had security issues.

  • Number on blacklists
  • Number just needing updates
  • Number with vulnerabilities

The result of maintenance

Now that the sites have been onboarded and cleaned up, the agency is sleeping a lot better. They also have a full dashboard so they know for certain where all of their sites are at and an audit log of what’s been done. As a nice bonus, their clients are now getting maintenance reports, showing the results of their hard work.

Some key takeaways that add value:

  • They have a birds-eye view of what’s going on with all their sites.
  • In 3 clicks they can find out exactly which websites are using a given plugin, including version numbers and if updates are available.
  • Their websites are scanned daily for known security vulnerabilities & blacklists.
  • They are the first to know if a website goes offline.
  • They now have regular offsite backups for all of their client sites, without the need to figure out their own storage.
  • An audit log for every site, so they know exactly what was done and when.
  • Their clients get a monthly report to let them know what was done, without them lifting a finger.

The agency hasn’t tossed that old spreadsheet, it just now has the client name & email used for the automated monthly report. And they now can answer important questions like “which clients use this plugin” and “what was done last month on the website”.

Tired of dealing with WordPress challenges on your own?

Click here to get back hours of your life each month with Worry-Free Maintenance

Sample Client Report

Use the carousel below to see a sample of what their clients now receive every month. It’s these details that help to build confidence with clients.

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Happy Mother’s Day Facebook Cover Freebie

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Mother’s Day is coming up soon, so here’s a Facebook cover image to help show mom that you really do care about her. As usual, it’s a freebie, so grab the download!
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Freebie: July 4th Facebook Cover Image

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July 4th is a pretty big deal here in the U.S. It’s an excuse to watch fireworks, eat BBQ and get the day off from work. But more importantly it’s our celebration of our independence. I’ve put together a set of facebook covers showing off our flag, the fireworks we use to celebrate the day, and some fighter jets to depict our our hard won freedom.
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