Norwegian corporate websites fall behind Nordic counterparts
The 19th edition of Webranking by Comprend shows that Norwegian corporate websites fail to perform against other countries in the Nordic region. The lag is mainly explained by underperformance in the investor relations sections and the increasingly important corporate social responsibility (CSR) section. However, Orkla's website is an exception and is ranked as number 1 in Norway.
Webranking by Comprend 2015-2016 assessed the websites and digital communication activities of 803 companies from 36 countries. The survey measures how well each company’s digital communications meet the expectations of business journalists, analysts, investors and jobseekers. This year, 20 Norwegian companies were included in the ranking, of which nine are part of the Financial Times Europe 500 list. Norway received an average score of 37.3 out of 100. Corresponding figures for Finland and Sweden are 46.0 and 55.6, respectively.
Share information: section with highest average fulfilment
Norwegian companies averaged a score of 50.5% for share information, which is slightly better than the average score of the Financial Times Europe 500 (42%) and in line with the Swedish average score (53.4%).
Norwegian companies performed well in providing information on dividend history and policy, as well as major shareholders. 90% of the Norwegian companies ranked present a dividend policy, compared to 59% of the 500 largest European companies. 15 out of the 20 Norwegian companies have information updated in 2015 about major shareholders, which is significantly higher than the FT Europe 500 average of 34%.
Investor relations information: improvements needed
On investor relations information, Norwegian companies average 27% of the total score. The ranking uncovered a low average fulfilment level of information about financial targets and achievements (15%). Only one of the 20 companies provides an investment story to attract prospective investors. Information about investments and divestments is also scarce, with only 20% of Norwegian companies presenting this information, in contrast to the 89% of financial stakeholders who state it is important.
Governance: opaque information
Information about corporate direction and control is fulfilled to an average rate of 41.6%, which is similar to the performance of the FT Europe 500 list (41.4%). However, Norwegian companies scored significantly below the Finnish average of 76%. The discrepancy in score is mainly caused by a lack of information about executive and group management remuneration (15.8%), insider dealings (15%) and stand alone corporate governance reports (22.9%) - three topics which stakeholders find important.
CSR: improvements necessary
Norwegian companies overlook the increased importance of CSR issues, being one of the lowest performers among all countries included in the ranking. The low score of only 18.1% of total score can be explained by the scarce information on CSR data, targets and achievements (12.6%) and the failure to explain how the CSR strategy relates to the overall business strategy (5%).
Responsive websites: enhanced user experience
Norwegian companies have made an effort to increase the user experience across corporate websites. This year, 55% of Norwegian companies surveyed were responsive, compared to only 35% last year.
Webranking by Comprend 2015-2016 – Norway
This year’s most improved Norwegian website is Orkla, which increased its score by 11.3 points since last year. The company also won the best corporate website in Norway, receiving 64.9 points. Last year's winner Telenor takes the second position with 61.4 points, followed by Statoil with 60 points.
Top 10 - Norway
"Orkla makes impressive progress in its digital corporate communication, which is rewarded with an increased score of 11.3 points from last year. In particular, Orkla's improved financial reporting and share information, as well as a more transparent communication on corporate direction and control brings the company to the top of the table." says Helena Wennergren, Head of Research at Comprend.
Webranking by Comprend – est.1997
Webranking by Comprend is Europe's leading survey of corporate websites. It is the only research that has every year since 1997 ranked over 800 websites according to how well they address the information requirements of corporate stakeholders.