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Red Instead - usability feedback


JenRed

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www.redinstead.com.au

 

My store (children's clothing and accessories) has been live for a few months now and while orders are picking up quite well there aren't as many as I expected. There may be reasons that have nothing to do with me, like delivery costs from Australia to other countries too high or maybe Australians still aren't so keen to buy online. Any confirmations of these reasons?

 

Anyway I want to check if there may be any other issues holding people back. This is a live store but if you are serious about looking and helping then feel free to place a test order - please indicate this somewhere though so I can delete it. You could choose cheque/money order for payment and then obviously not pay and so there is no risk of paying by mistake.

 

www.redinstead.com.au

 

Thanks in advance

 

Jen

I haven't lost my mind - I have it backed up on disk somewhere.

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The category tabs are sort of unorthodox. It looks like a banner. Maybe you should switch to thestandard looking category tabs.

 

I'm not sure why your pop.jpg's open in a _parent at the same size. When I buy clothes online, I like to see a large version of the picture for more details. Clicking on your images takes me an ugly page with nothing but the original photo.

 

I would move your search box to the left side of your site. People naturally look there.

 

Change the 'continue' button to a submit button on your 'create_account.php' page. People may think there are more steps required and leave.

 

What if I buy something and it doesn't fit? You should have a customer service section. I really had to search for 'Delivery and Returns'.

 

I don't think you're going to sell anything with 'no_image_th.jpg'

 

How are your listings in the search engines? Maybe some SEO/SEM would help.

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I think the category bar is fine and also the search. I like the general feel and look of the site, but I'm female and we look at things differently I think. I agree on the enlarged pictures, I don't think it should open up a new page. There are people that don't know now to go "back" and that may include a lot of childrens clothes buying customers. As far as the return info, etc, I also tend to look on the left for information, rather than the right, but that's probably an American thing. As far as sales, we have had an ecommerce site for about six years ( haven't managed to get it into oscommerce yet, but we are trying) and it is slower than ever right now. That is not the norm, as we should be into holiday sales by now.

 

Just my 2 cents,

Shari

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Thank you both. About the pop up, that was a mistake! I changed something and didn't realise it did that. See this thread - what I did was decide that I ought to display the large image first off rather than a thumbnail and "click here to enlarge" but I left it as clickable by mistake. So that is fixed now - just a large image on each product_info page, but thumbnails everywhere else.

 

What if I buy something and it doesn't fit? You should have a customer service section. I really had to search for 'Delivery and Returns'.

 

On the top of each page is "Customer Information" - you didn't see that? Also all the Customer Info bits are listed on the first page in column_right and always in the footer. I am amazed you didn't find them easily - is this a problem for others too?

 

Change the 'continue' button to a submit button on your 'create_account.php' page. People may think there are more steps required and leave.

That's good thanks.

 

I don't think you're going to sell anything with 'no_image_th.jpg'

Yeah I think you are right I will turn those off unti8l I get the images.

 

How are your listings in the search engines? Maybe some SEO/SEM would help.
I have 2000 pages listed and a PR of 5 so not too bad I think. I tend to think being an Australian store is a disadvantage in the world market (?)

 

I like the category bar so will need some convincing that it doesn't work.

 

thanks again - any more?

 

Jen

I haven't lost my mind - I have it backed up on disk somewhere.

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On the top of each page is "Customer Information"

 

People are used to the terms, 'customer service' or 'returns'. At least in the US.

 

If your business allows for it, having your phone number on the top of every page may help. People will feel more comfortable if they think they can call someone if they have a problem.

 

 

I have 2000 pages listed and a PR of 5 so not too bad I think.

 

That's quite good. But are you getting traffic from them?

 

 

I didn't mean to imply that I don't like the category bar. It's definitely cool.

 

 

Overall, I would say that your usability great. Sometimes little changes can make a huge difference. And I've heard from people all over the globe reporting slow B2C sales recently.

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I think the category tabs are intuitive enough. However, at a glance, it isn't readily apparent that it is a clothing store. There are pictures of children's faces and lots of text with a big "Red Instead" sticker. At first I thought I was on a lost children site. You might want to add more color and pictures of the clothing opposed to the wearers.

 

Past the first page this is much better. I like the larger images and the text description in the product list (saves a click).

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I think your website is quite okay, and I'm not just saying that because I like Aussies :)

 

A few remarks:

- Your frontpage is not 'catchy' enough. In my opinion the first page should not be the introduction page, but a page with featured products. Save the introduction for when I want to know more about your company, if I am interested in buying I will look for it. By doing it your way you give us the impression that yours is a new shop (regardless of whether that is true), and people don't like new shops... they want a trustworthy shop, one that has been around for a while.

 

- It is very clear that you actually have something for sale and care about the products, good information, clearly presented. I really like what you have done with the product_info page. Overall I think you may not have even made that many changes to osCommerce but you have given it your own unique look and cut it down to the things that are necessary. Compliments, unfortunately not many people on this forum ever (bother to?) get this far.

 

- I don't see the point in offering multiple currencies, because it is highly unlikely that you use the actual currency rate or even accept foreign currency. If you must do so, present them in the order that does them justice. Your Australian dollar on top, NZ dollar second, in my opinion the Euro third (the US dollar is on it's way out) and the US dollar fourth. After that the GBP, Yen. Why do you even offer Spanish, French, German & Italian currency, surely you know that they have all swapped for Euros? You don't do them a favour... some people still have a hard time letting go.

I say only use A$ & NZ$ and do so in a way that the live currency rate is being used.

 

HTH,

Willem.

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