This example is the standard 3 question website review of Streets.MN. The site at the time of the review:
What Does This Website Do?
- It’s a web page based on cities, towns, neighborhoods and the places in between. Their mission is to expand and enhance the conversation about transportation and land use through research and informed commentary.
- It provides valuable information and comments about Transportation in Minnesota. It’s also a space for people to express their opinion on this subject.
- The sites purpose is to discuss land use and transportation issues in Minnesota.
- The website informs people about transportation and infrastructure in the cities. There are articles by different contributors and they discuss issues concerning land and the city.
- My guess is that it will aggregate any blogs or comments from around the net about public transportation and land use in Minneapolis. Also, it aims to start conversations and debates with regard to it. Although I’ve yet to really go around it, I am not sure whether or not it has an ulterior motive. But it’s basically a venue or an arena where comments, insights and experiences about public transportation can be shared.
- It promotes awareness and conversation in community about transportation in the Twin Cities MN area.
- This website is about land use and transportation issues in the Twin cities and Greater Minnesota.
- The website offers a forum for the debate on public transit in addition to other urban issues. The site is centered around Minneapolis, Minnesota.
- The website talks about transportation and land use in Minnesota.
- Interesting premise. Sort of wish my area had something similar. It is a site that is dedicated to the community with emphasis on transportation issues.
There are a few different opinions, but each reviewer seems to understand what the site is about.
Best Current Feature
- I really like the block on the right featuring the latest articles and comments.
- I think the archive section allows users to obtain good information from past posts and issues.
- The best current feature is how the stories and articles are well organized, easy to read, informative and interesting.
- It is very clean-looking and refreshing. It does not try to capture your attention through wild graphics or multi-color schemes, which is a good thing. Visitors to the site will probably want to air their grievances or post their thoughts and the site’s design seems to allow that to happen. There is a good combination of visuals and the text sizes are big enough. There aren’t too many details that will fight over the user’s attention and it will be able to concentrate rather quickly on a particular section.
- All the great articles!
- I like the slideshow of images on the front page.
- I like the clean design of the website which makes it easy to read. I also like the way the information is categorized.
- The recent tweets and the various links to stories about cycling and transportation.
- The best thing is the content. The articles look interesting and would appeal to the community, particularly commuters.
- The articles on the webpage are the only thing that makes this website useful, the other sections aren’t really important as they aren’t as informative as the articles on the front page.
While design is certainly important, publishing good content that keeps people coming back is key, and the reviewers feel they’ve done just that.
One Thing to Improve
- Maybe adding a Tag Cloud would help visitors to find interesting topics for them.
- The Podcast section does not have any podcasts. Also, I think the site needs to make clear what they do with the information. Is it just talk or do they put the ideas to use?
- Categorizing the content could be helpful instead of just having a link to the “Archives”. Although that would require you to hire a curator or a moderator (I am assuming that users can put in their own content).
- Add an advanced search option, and maybe a few more images.
- I would like to see a community forum maybe. So residents can share opinions.
- I would include images that reflect the city as well as the urban centered theme. Also, the logo seems really plain and not stimulating. I would recommend adding social networking sharing options.
- Change the layout and add an archive search to the page.
- The design asthetically is okay but I wish there was a menu bar at the top of the page with drop down to the different sections of the site. The bare design also has a “cheap” feel to me.
- The website looks very bloggy and amateurish; giving it a more structured and professional look would make it look more trustworthy. The podcast section not working makes it seem rushed.
- The site is noticeably bland and plain. I realize it could be the aim to be that way but it could still be brightened up without taking away from the content
The comments about the design are pretty common. Sometimes a plain layout can be too plain. Polishing the design to look a little less like a blog would be a first good step. Get more content up there, including the podcasts, and organize the archives to be more search-friendly, and it’ll be a pretty solid site. I might also add updating the Description of the header so it no longer pops up “Just another WordPress blog” when the cursor is hovering over.
Then run it through a retest to see if they’re right.
This example is a review of CrumplePop.com, a product website selling file effects and templates for Final Cut Pro. This is the site at the time of the test:
What Does This Website Do?
- This site offers video effects for Final Cut Pro.
- At first appearances, this website seems to offer Final Cut Pro effects and plug-ins, although I’ve just noticed a tutorial link too.
- It allows consumers to buy and download products that assist in photo manipulation. It also uses video to give the consumer a better idea of the products they offer.
- It provides a service that takes videos from Final Cut Pro and allows users to broadcast them and add effects to the film.
- It offers downloads of film editing and effects software.
- It is a site to help edit and put effects into films.
- It is a sales page for a picture and video editing software suite.
- The website provides tools to assist with video editing. It provides all sorts of extra effects such as several different fonts.
- A website that offers software products for Final Cut Pro.
- It appears to offer different kinds of visual titles or effects for online websites. It looks like it could also be for videos or films, primarily ones online.
Best Current Feature
- Big pictures, simple layout.
- The tutorials are helpful but the videos are more impressive.
- Overall the design looks good, and is well laid-out. It’s also easy to find the information you’re looking for.
- I like that you can watch videos of each product offered to see what it does and if it’s right for your project. It’s very clear and concise.
- The overall design is not too cluttered. Very simple. The graphics that are present, like the main center picture that rotates every few seconds, are pleasing on the eye and appear artistic and creative. The links at the top are not cluttered, and getting information is easy. I also like the fonts and word art that is used. It seems cool and hip, and looks like fonts I have seen in movies (I think of Juno).
- The best feature is the tutorials. I like how they are well detailed and easy to find in an organized manner.
- How the main image of the site is always changing, advertising a bunch of different products the site offers
- I like the slide show feature on the home page. The ads in the cycle seem catchy and to the point.
- The tutorials section is great. There’s a lot of info, but easy to find what you are looking for.
- The best feature is the flash object cycling through some of the things they offer and the price of the product is right there on that page.
The simple yet creative design gets a couple mentions, but the reviewers really like two main features: the slide show of offered products that grabs their attention immediately and the tutorials that help them understand the product. These are probably the most important things this site would need to accomplish, so that’s a success.
One Thing To Improve
- Divide products into sections that target people doing specific projects.
- On the products page, having a list of product names at the top that link to the description and images would be beneficial.
- When I click on the FAQ, the first few things listed are very specific. I would prefer to have a few general FAQ things like “what do we do?” “what services do we offer?” “how much does it cost?” Currently, the first question in the FAQ is “When I drag a Master Template onto my timeline, FCP crashes! What do I do?”. There is also no organization to the FAQ – if I had a specific question, I would have to scroll through all the questions to find my answer (and there are dozens, some with long responses). Also, on the main screen, it seems like the pages change too quickly – only about 5 seconds by my count. And I can’t see an easy way to change back to the previous one, unless I am missing something. So I would have to wait for them to cycle through to see something I am interested in again.
- I think the colors are a bit bland. Gray is very dull paired with white. Make the website more funky.
- A direct description of what the site is about + the products in a clearly visible spot on the main page
- I think having drop down menus to see the options would be great.
- The only thing that comes to mind is when I hover my mouse over a slide you could hold that slide instead of advancing. That would give me more time to read a slide that catches my eye.
- Simplify some of the instructions into terms that people with out editing experience can easily understand.
- The page is pretty well designed, but it could use a little more (soft) color.
- I think they need more information about what the product is. It wasn’t immediately clear to me, even with how slow the flash object cycles through.
No glaring issues. The site is definitely on the right track. A couple things stand out with the reviewers that I also noticed: the slide show kind of zips by, which is fine if they add controls so a user can click through or backup to see something they missed. And a little bit more color could be added, but not too much; the minimal, stripped down design is a benefit. These, along with organizing the FAQ, are great suggestions that would be very simple changes.
One suggestion I would make that the reviewers did not catch is the site’s permalinks. They are currently set to the default page ID, but converting them to the name structure is a very simple way of offering more memorable URLs to your viewers.
Some easy and quick changes and the site would be ready for retesting.
This review is on the website of Baer’s Furniture, a small furniture chain in Florida. This is the site at the time of the test.
What Does This Website Do?
- This webpage is for a furniture store.
- The website showcases different furniture.
- This website is an online catalog for a Florida based leather furniture store.
- The website belongs to Baer’s Furniture and they sell furniture.
- This website is of a furniture store, which has 14 locations within Florida.
- It displays different galleries of furniture for a store.
- This is the website of a furniture store. It is designed to tell you what they have and about the store.
- This website is for a business that sells furniture. Both in design centers in FL, and also online.
- The website is for a furniture store with several locations in Florida. You can also look at your account, the current ad and I believe pay your bill.
- It is a home furnishing store website.
Best Current Feature
- The amount and variety of products displayed.
- The subtleties of the design. It is very neutral and not obnoxious.
- The site navigation is fairly straightforward.
- I thought the “Design” feature is the best on this web-page. It covers the company’s interesting facts such as sales philosophy, what to expect from them and all the special designing methods.
- Overall the website is attractive, but the best thing I like are the pictures on the Home page, and the color scheme.
- The simple design, calming color scheme and the photo slideshow on the homepage.
- The navigation is very user friendly. Plus you can see previews of different types of furniture. In addition they show you where they are located!
- I like the flash object as it moves at a good speed and gives you a good picture of what they have to offer.
- I used the website to find a nice leather couch. I was able to quickly find exactly what I was looking for due to the clearly listed and easy to find search tabs. I think this is the best feature on the site.
- I really like the pictures of the furniture in the slide show. It is beautiful and looks to be high end. The site has an upscale look to it.
There’s a wide range of features pointed out but the slideshow seems to be a favorite. It gives the viewer an instant look into what type of furniture to expect, and gives a sense that you’ll find quality products there. This is a good choice for the front page.
One Thing To Improve
- Make some of the font a little bigger and stand out more.
- The text is a bit small, especially for higher resolution monitors.
- There is a little bit too much empty space on either side of the slideshow. If the center column was widened and the font made larger it could take up a little of that space.
- The blank space on the homepage could be reduced.
- Maybe you could add price tags to the previews on the homepage. I would like it if there was less text and more pictures.
- The contact page form asks for a lot of information that may not be necessary if the potential customer just wants to ask a couple questions. Having to provide a phone number and street address may deter some people from completing the form.
- While I like the flash object I would like to be able to get to the collections that it talks about and I didn’t see a way to do that.
- There should be a tagline or mission statement on the front page. While it is clear that the site sells furniture, it’s not clear what their service area is, and also the services offered in the design centers.
- The only thing I would change is possibly make the fonts larger. They are pretty small, and could be hard to read for some people that maybe shop from home out of necessity and not preference.
- Text should be little brighter, bigger and bolder.
The font on the home page is a bit small and the soft grey color can be difficult to read, especially since the rest of the color scheme is a softer. It doesn’t quite stand out, and the reviewers definitely picked up on that.
One great suggestion is to link the slideshow images to a collection page of the items in the photo, in case someone browsing the images wants to build that particular room. That’s a slightly more complex change than minimizing the empty space on the front page and increasing the size of the font, but it would be a valuable change. Toss in a couple of the other suggestions, such as reducing the required information on the contact page, and the site would be ready for retesting.
This test is for the website of The Capitol Theatre, a community and Broadway stage in Yakima, WA. This is the site at the time of the test.
What Does This Website Do?
- This is the official website of The Capitol Theatre, where you can get the all the information about shows, times, and tickets.
- It appears to be a type of community theater organization.
- The website is for the Capital Theatre in Yakima Washington, a local community theater.
- The website is for the Capitol Theatre. It provides information about what the Capitol Theatre is all about and the various different arts that you can see there.
- This is a web page for a local theater with updates about their current and upcoming shows. You can also buy tickets on the site and donate to the theater.
- It’s for the Capitol Theatre, a theatre that holds plays and local shows.
- It’s a website that sells tickets to a community theater.
- This is the website belonging to a community theater. From here you can buy tickets online and see information about upcoming plays.
- Provides information about upcoming events that will take place at “The Capitol Theatre”. Allowing people to get up to date information for not only The Capitol Theatre but also the 4th Street Theatre.
- This website is about a theater in Washington.
Best Current Feature
- The background design is awesome and the font style used is also very attractive. The best feature is that the homepage has all the necessary information upfront.
- I like the left side of the page, that has the information most people will look for, like tickets, current and future shows, and calendar of events.
- I like the minimalistic design of the web page, it is easy to navigate.
- I think it’s great that it is a very comprehensive site, yet has a clean look and it’s easy to navigate. It contains a lot of information, from purchasing tickets, to donating, to a calender, to info in the news about the theater, contact info, links to blogs and social sites. With this amount of information, a website lacking good design would be very cluttered and it would be hard to find the information you’re looking for.
- The best feature on the page is the shows, subscriptions and tickets tab. I think it is the most important part of the web page so people will know how much it will cost.
- It is well laid out and you can easily find anything you are looking for. It is not cluttered at all and is very easy to read.
- I like that I can get to the calendar of events with ONE click from the homepage. You would be surprised at the number of arts/event websites that make this more difficult than it should be.
- The best thing I noted in this website apart from the nice splash page, I liked the categorization of the different modules on the homepage for easy access.
- Easy to follow, the colors are nice and easy on the eyes. The navigation is clean and simple.
- The best feature on this web site is the splash page leading into the main content. That is incredible.
The design is clean yet a little elegant, and navigation is simple and basic. The reviewers like how easy it is to find the information most people will be looking for when they come to this site; shows, times and tickets.
One Thing To Improve
- If you missed the flash on the splash page, it’s not immediately clear where theatre is located, especially which state. Something on the home page about what city/state the organization was located would be helpful.
- The only thing I found a bit confusing was the Donate Now link. The instructions do not match what is displayed. Also, there should be a blurb about the security of donating on line, where my funds were going to be targeted. Perhaps a phone number as well for those that don’t feel fully confident in donating on line. Other than this, the site looks great!
- I would like to see more videos of upcoming and past shows.
- The text area should be expanded so it’s not so narrow.
- I do not like when you go to a web page and have to click enter site to get to the real site. It tends to make me more reluctant to go to the page.
- There should be a slideshow showing the recent five upcoming events.
- The homepage has a video preview of one of the upcoming events. When I clicked through to other events on the calendar, I was hoping to see more video previews, but I was disappointed. They should do video previews for all their shows.
- Categorize the left hand navigation links and transfer them across the top, then widen the middle section of the pages.
- Perhaps provide the option to download videos of the previous plays, so that missed plays can be watched at home for nominal fee.
- The videos on the website are too long.
These are good suggestions and the changes would be very minimal. The most important would probably be the additional videos; people would like a small preview of the show they’re interested in purchasing a ticket to see.
Updating the instructions on the Donate page, displaying the address on the home page, and widening the center column are all quick, simple changes that would really improve first impressions. Then the site would be ready for retesting.
This is a standard review of the website for Turquoise Boutique, a clothing retailer in Seattle. This is the site at the time of the test.
What Does This Website Do?
- This website sells clothes.
- This is the official webpage of a store for young women called Turquoise Boutique. On the site, you can shop for everything from skirts to handbags.
- Turquoise Boutique sells fashions (tops, bottoms, coats, jackets, etc.) and fashion accessories.
- Website for boutique called Turquoise Boutique which sells clothes and accessories.
- This website is an online boutique for women that carries various items from fashionable clothing, to accessories, to jewelry. The site also allows the consumer to buy the merchandise online.
- This is the website of Turquoise Boutique which sells clothing and accessories.
- Sells clothing and accessories.
- Sells trendy fashions and accessories on-line and in-store. It looks like a good store that teens and young adult girls would enjoy shopping at. You may find some unusual items not sold in mass quantities like your typical chain store.
- This website deals with dresses, outerwear, and accessories like belts, handbags, etc.
- On-line clothing retailer.
Best Current Feature
- The text is nicely organized on the left and provides categories for easy and quick searching, yet the photos provide immediate information for the shopper and everything is neat and clean.
- I did like the photos of the clothing.
- Left-rail nav makes shopping for clothes/accessories very easy to use.
- I’m most impressed with its aesthetics, and easy-to-follow menus and tabs. When I’m purchasing clothes, accessories, etc… online, I also want to see an easy layout, and clear/concise pictures of the merchandise (which this website clearly accomplishes.)
- The female model on the homepage is perhaps the best feature of this site.
- The images are very eye catching. The menu is very simple and clear.
- The colors and the layout are good and simple, which is very user-friendly and doesn’t confuse online shoppers.
- I like the picture of the store and the racks showing the colored and designed shirts. It’s a clean and bright store with plenty of room to shop, it’s not packed tightly like some stores I’ve been in.
- Clean design. Site loads fast. Easy to review the products. I like that I can both browse and search with ease.
- I like how clicking on the categories (Accessories, Bottoms) displays all the items and clicking on the sub-categories refines the search. Nice logo.
The reviewers like the detailed, crisp product photos and the very simple layout. It’s not clogged up with irrelevant images or information, the focus is clearly on the merchandise and browsing through the items is very easy.
One Thing To Improve
- I think the homepage would be a lot more attractive and appealing with more content. Try displaying some specific products on the homepage, perhaps new items or those on sale. List prices alongside those featured items on the homepage.
- The images on the homepage should link to the corresponding products in the shop. They could also rotate, featuring several different styles and accessories.
- Include more female models, so the customer can see how the clothes look on people.
- The image on the front page indicates there is a physical store for this boutique but the doesn’t have location or contact information. This is only found when clicking through to the Facebook profile. This should be included in the footer on all pages and an About Us page.
- My one issue with this website is the unclear way of communicating with them (there’s only a ‘contact’ form page.) I don’t see where this company is located, and there is no phone number visible. I tend to err on the side of caution when I see websites without this imformation clearly in front of me. It makes me question their professionalism, and authenticity. This information (if not on the front page), should absolutely be listed on their ‘contact us’ tab.
- The website can include Testimonial and About us column.
- Show models actually wearing the clothes. Show accessories matched with outfits.
- Include information about the designers or manufacturers. Are these handmade, or local? Is there anything special about these clothes?
- The banner space at the top is too bare – there’s nothing there and it’s wasted space. It shouldn’t be overdone but in my opinion it’s underdone. Even adding some graphics or a design would improve it, something eye catching!
- I would like to see an “About Us” link with a page talking about the company. Where is the company based. What is “your” story.
One of the first things I noticed when looking over this site was the lack of information on the store location, and it seems a few of the reviewers also picked up on that. The first image you see is of the inside of the store so it’s confusing when you cannot locate a physical address or contact information. The rest of the site seems to indicate it’s an online-only operation, but if you go to their Facebook page, the store information is prominently displayed.
Other reviewers would like to see even more company information, as well as some testimonials, additional graphics to give it a little more life, and some styling of the clothes and accessories to give the customer a feel for some outfits.
The addition of their store information is the most important fix, and it will take two minutes. The rest of the suggestions would be pretty quick and easy to implement, then the site would be ready for retesting.
This example is a standard review of Secrets of the City, a Minnesota based guide and community forum. This is the site at the time of the test.
What Does This Site Do?
- It seems to be a website geared to talking about happenings around Minneapolis, where to eat, what to do, and where to find good deals. The site seems to be targeted to those in their twenties and thirties.
- It appears to be for Minnesota and is basically a guide of what to see around town.
- This website is about Minneapolis. It provides information about events, news etc., in and around the city of Minneapolis.
- This website serves as a central source of what’s going on in the city. It talks about restaurants, news, events, etc.
- The website offers news & happenings regarding the city’s cultural scenario. It also offers a platform for members to share their views regarding various topics coming under the site’s scope. It also has information about restaurants & hot deals.
- The site provides users latest info through featured Events: insiders’ recommendations, MNSpeak: an open forum and Events and Restaurant Listings.
- It’s a Minneapolis/St. Paul info site covering daily events, a forum, restaurant listings and other forms of culture.
- The site looks like a ‘magazine’ about a city: what to do, where to eat, events, etc..
- The site provides information about where to shop, happy hours, restaurants, events happening and so on.
- The website provides information on where to socialize (eat, drink) and about current and upcoming events in the Minneapolis area.
Best Current Feature
- I love the color scheme and page layout. It doesn’t feel cluttered, and the muted tones don’t overwhelm you at all.
- The top of the page is very visually appealing and easy to navigate. There are links to easily sign up via Facebook, Twitter and RSS. The quick search feature is also handy.
- The graphics and background.
- The best current feature on this webpage is the menu right at the top of the page, which is easy to access. It has links to the different choices displayed clearly.
- The best feature is the events section where it is easy to search and know about events in the city. The page also seems to be updated regularly.
- Really NICE Secrets of the City logo with the guy & his shadow! I’d like to see you use a font for the titles (both the articles and the category names) that has a personality from the same era. Wish you could put the sponsor’s links a bit further down on the page. At first I kinda ignored everything on the right hand side because I thought it would ALL be ads, but these are (I think) light-hearted ads? Your suggestions? Tie those to the real articles using a snappier font.
- The site has been able to create the right ambiance thanks to the site logo and the header graphics on top of each page. Also, the background and foreground colors (white and black colors) are subtle but creates a nice effect. I really liked the way the content has been formatted on the site. The text is very user friendly. Different types of font, font styles, font colors, proper spacing of page elements especially the use of hyperlinks in the written text is worth appreciating.
- The search and general layout of the site. It is very easy to navigate, find specific cuisines, etc. Also, it’s great to have a deals section, I mean who doesn’t like a deal!
- The banner is very cool. I like the ‘Events’ section, too.
- The best feature is the large choice and variety of places/restaurants/bars featured, and the search function for every section, making browsing them more easy.
They seem to like the top section of the site; the logo, the menu and the color scheme. What should be worked on?
One Thing To Improve
- It’s really not clear who this website is for or what you will find on this website when you initially visit. A more descriptive header like “what’s happening in Minneapolis” or a little about us blurb on the front page would really help identify what a person can expect to find here.
- It would be better if there was something on the page that specifically said Minneapolis instead of just the toolbar as that will make things a little more clear. I assumed “MN” meant Minnesota but didn’t know where until I clicked on the restaurant links. The articles/comments on the left would be better put in their own subsection.
- The header portion of the web page can be reduced to avoid excessive scrolling. The footer can also be reduced. The color selection is professional. Pictures could include real photos, to showcase the beauty of the city, and can be changed weekly / monthly to attract regular visitors.
- To make this webpage better, there should be a vivid large photo of a city scene at the top of the page. There should be nice photos of the restaurants, events, etc. It would be a good idea to have a photo album too with past events.
- On the home page, a single-sentence description of what the site is all about can be added for new visitors because the name doesn’t give out that much. Also, images of people will give it more of a human touch.
- The grey/black/red theme is very nice and clean. Maybe adding a 3 pt black frame around each picture so the picture’s color is bounded and your color scheme is emphasized.
- You could provide ticket purchase access for cultural events in the twin cities. You can also have a section for editor’s choice of the month, which could list the most prominent cultural event of the month or the newest restaurant that opened.
- I use a 17″ laptop and when the home page loads the wide header uses up a lot of valuable space. This is compounded by the right third of the page, being taken up by ads and comments. Also, the font used and the spacing of the lines make it kind of hard to read. Other than this, it is quite a nice site!
- Tie up with the local commercial hubs and provide some gift coupons or some other benefits for the people who register with secrets of the city so that every time they thing of doing something in the city they will first log onto screcretsofthecity.com.
- I would find it more interesting if the restaurant page had photos of the recommended places instead of only a map.
As much as they like the header and logo image, it doesn’t immediately tell them what the site is for, and that information is a little bit buried. Since a good portion of the target demographic would be new residents and visitors, it’d be a good idea to make the purpose a little clearer.
They would also like to see the design tightened up a little to reduce scrolling, and add in pictures of the restaurants and events. There are some good ideas here and after a few changes the site would be ready for retesting.
Rapid Dry is a carpet and textile cleaning company located in Rochester, NY. We put their site through the standard review test. This is their site at the time of the test:
What Does This Website Do?
- Provides information on a carpet cleaning business.
- Books cleaning service for Rapid Dry. Provides many different cleaning services, not just carpet.
- This website describes what the Rapid Dry business is and what they do. They have detailed information about their services, costs and methods they use.
- Based on what I see on this web page, this site offers professional cleaning services.
- This website deals with complete carpet and textile cleaning all across the Monroe County Area.
- The company provides a carpet cleaning service, emphasizing that the carpets will dry fast.
- The website connects you with carpet cleaners (Rapid Dry Cleaners) in Rochester, NY.
- It’s a website for a carpet cleaning company called Rapid Dry.
- This company, Rapid Clean provides a wide variety of household and commercial cleaning of carpeting, grout, tile and upholstery using eco-friendly solutions.
- Describes the services offered by a steam cleaning business in Rochester NY. It lets perspective customers know what services are offered by the company. Customers can book an appointment online.
Best Current Feature
- The video of the carpet cleaner in action.
- The carpet cleaning tips and advice section.
- The best current feature on this web page is the list of things a person can get when they chose to use this company’s services.
- “Book a Cleaner” is the best current feature on this web page as it allows a customer to book a cleaner with ease.
- It’s quickly gets to the point. I would imagine anyone looking for this service would understand what this business offers quickly.
- The best feature are the 10 points listed under “Here’s What You Get”. The website viewer can easily see what the company does and offers, what is available. The whole website in fact looks very neat, information is provided in a way that it is easy to find.
- “Here’s What You Get” – this section clearly specifies what they provide with the service.
- The website is easy to navigate, very well organized and the company colors fit very well with the website layout. Contact information is also easily accessible which is always a plus.
- The amount of info about the services offered. The descriptions let the customer know exactly what to expect and how their carpets will be treated.
- The demonstration video is the best feature, it makes the customers understand about the services provided.
One thing definitely sticks out: the list of services they provide and their prominent placement on the front page. Potential customers don’t have to hunt for the information they need. With video demonstration and ability to book a cleaner online, they’ve made sure their service is convenient.
What are their areas of opportunity?
One Thing To Improve
- The video’s a good touch, but the resolution/quality is low.
- The middle paragraph with the bluish gray background and black text is a little difficult to read, although the red hyperlinks do stick out. I would change something in the colors though to make it easier to read and make you want to read it.
- Display actual pictures of before and after jobs.
- Perhaps add some before and after picture to give a better idea of what I would expect.
- I would feel more drawn in to this website if there was at least one picture with people in them (I find the telephone girl in the bottom right corner too generic). The above picture of a living room and the other one below of the van look a bit boring and lifeless. Why not instead put a picture of the van with a smiling cleaning team standing next to it?
- It sounds like you offer really good services, but the website is really low-budget looking. Too much text and the text is all the same size. You should pick out some key features you want to emphasize and then have click on links to the other info. The images are too low of a resolution. Too much red. It has potential, but right now it’s way too jumbled.
- You can display positive feedback from customers that you received during previous services. Also that picture of the van is on the home page, “contact us” page and “about us” page. Seems too repetitive for me. Other than that, I really like the website.
- I think they are minimizing their red, blue and white carpet cleaning packages and these should be highlighted or larger – more prominent on the site. There are too many items at the top right corner; you have one column that states Services and then another to the right that indicates “what you get”. I think this second link should be shown if you click on the Service or as a soft pop up if the cursor scrolls over the surface. In the body of the description of the company there are too many links and the red font is distracting not attracting, the font size is too small. Hit the key points, people know they are looking for a carpeting/tile cleaning company and providing too many links will lead them away from the original web site.
- The site could have used different types of images. I would like to see more images of the people at work. The only picture is of their truck. Action shots of the men at work would be good.
- We need to add more testimonials from day to day people.
Great feedback. Two points were made more than once: before and after and/or more photos with people, and add testimonials. It’s great to see the services offered but people want to know the results are worth the purchase.
Other good points include changing the color combination in the blue-ish section with the bright red hyperlinks, and minimizing the amount of information on the front page. The red and bold hyperlinks become the primary focus and and font size/color with the blue background make it a little difficult to read the text.
There is a lot of information on the front page below the list of services. Most of that could be moved to pages where the services are described in more detail, cleaning up the front page, leaving the services, contact info, and special packages to be the first thing people see.
Consolidate detailed information, eliminate any duplicate info that could be confusing, and add testimonials and better pictures, and the site will be ready for retesting.
This standard review is of Penn Cycle, a cycle and fitness company located in Minnesota. Here is the site at the time of the test:
What Does This Site Do?
- The website is for a company that sells and rents bike, arranges/sponsors bike trekking. It also provides advice, tools and other information related to bikes, fitness and cycling.
- This site completely deals with sales of Road Bikes, Mountain Bikes, City or Hybrid Bikes, Kids Bikes, Fitness Bikes, BMX Bikes, Cruisers and Tandems and their accessories.
- This is the official website for Penn Cycle and Fitness. They have a small chain of stores in Minnesota where they sell professional bikes and accessories. They also have an online catalog for people outside of Minnesota and also give tips on cycling and information on cycling tours.
- It sells bikes and offers info about biking.
- This is a business website for a company that sells bikes. It is to showcase their products as well as their locations, hours and contact information
- From what I can gather, this page is a retail and information site about cycling. They sell bikes and gear, custom bikes, and provide information about the sport of cycling. This information includes tips about cycling, maintaining your bicycle, and tour information.
- The website sells bicycles and cycling gear, equipment, accessories etc.
- The site is for Penn Cycle, which rents or sells bikes and accessories for bikes, and also provides advice and tips on cycling.
- This website primarily sells and rents out Bicycles. It also sells accessories and other components related to bicycles.
- The site appears to be a sales site for selling bikes. However there is also information regarding tours, and group rides. Overall, a site for bike enthusiasts.
Best Current Feature
- I think the drop down menu on the side of the page is very helpful. It’s very informative to have the store hours easily visible at the top of the page. Reviews & payment options are very easy to find. Having their sales as well as awards received at the top is great!
- The search results. It was categorized in a very useful manner. The sorting options for the search results are also very useful.
- I think the best feature is the online catalog that they offer. They offer everything from bikes to footwear to different bicycle parts.
- When you hover your mouse over the list on the left, a sub-list appears giving you further options to look through.
- I like that you can immediately tell what the site is for and that the have current sale information right at the top. I also like that they have featured products with reviews immediately visible as well as new products.
- The best thing about the site is that it’s colorful. You immediately see lots of bright colors that grab your attention. I also like the shots of people cycling. This gives the page a sense of action and gets you into thinking about riding a bike. It’s not a particular feature, per se, but a total attention grabber that makes you want to use the site.
- The web page looks well organized and it’s easy to find what you want in there. I especially like the menu on the left, where you can have quick access to anything.
- Header image is attractive. Featured menu is a very good one.
- I do like the header on the top of the page. This clearly shows the basic premise for this web site. It’s a good image and the logo is very prominent.
- I like the header image with the logo. The layout has the right width. The blowout sale catches the eye.
Navigation is really important, especially when you have a retail site. The reviewers like the navigation menu, the organization of the products and search results, and the general layout; bright colors, nice header, eye catching graphics.
One Thing To Improve
- Down the middle below “Penn Cycle Offers”, it seems a little cluttered. Some of the items should be able to be moved to a drop down menu or put the facebook/twitter up at the top with the contact information or changing the “e-mail us” to a contact tab. Overall great website!
- Some useful quick links at the home page would have been good. Like Best Sellers/Upcoming trek travel tours etc. The search option needs to get more sophisticated and offer search based on product/category/price etc.
- I think the site should offer a forum for customers and avid bicycle fans. Everyone likes to connect with people who are interested in the same things so I think adding a forum will promote customer feedback about the best bikes and connectedness to other fans of cycling.
- I don’t like that they tell you to scroll down for locations and hours. They should at least have a link at the top of the page to click on.
- They should more prominently display cycling gear. We see lots of photographs of bikes, and that’s good, but we should also see more information about specific gear one uses for bicycling. That’s important because a lot of people would buy some of those items for other uses. I’m thinking specifically of clothing items such as shorts, hats, and bodysuits. They could possibly increase their miscellaneous sales that way.
- Change the colors of the menu on the left and the long gray bar underneath, and also the gray colored links at the top (under the picture of the cyclists). The gray and the light brown are in complete contrast to the eye catching picture at the top.
- Left can be modified a little bit in its appearance. I think total page is a little bit lengthy.
- There is only one picture of each bike on sale. More pictures from different angles would be good. Also, a few videos of the bicycle would also give buyer better idea of how the bike looks and works.
- I would not have the HUGE blow out sale displayed as prominently as it is, it really draws 100% of the attention and only focuses on bike sales. It would be easy for someone to not see the other information down the left hand menu. I am not a fan of the left hand menu, if I scan the site quickly I only see Home, Email us, My Account, Shopping Cart, and Wish List. (all of this could be at the very top above the banner). It would be much better with all of the main items from the left menu, grouped into key headings on the top menu (next to home).
- The whole layout is way too cluttered. The left navigation bar contains dozens of items that make it hard to tell what the site is actually all about, with tips, group rides, “commuting by bike” and “riding your bike” menu items. The colors for the tabs and navigation bar and headlines are unappealing. The right bar looks completely superfluous or at least not well used by advertising some random gear that 99.9% of all visitors don’t want or need. The tabs at the top look amateurish. It should be possible to tell at a glance what the site actually sells without navigating some sub-menus – focus on the essentials.
Some of the reviewers agree that there is a little room for improvement in the left side menu; it contains too many links, could be grouped even more and maybe consolidated and blended with the tabs across the top, and the colors could be brightened to match the header and logo. These changes would shorten the page and organize the links to make it easier to find exactly what you’re looking for.
Additionally, some of the links on the menu are duplicated under other links, such as Commuting by Bike. This has a root placement on the menu and it’s located under Riding Your Bike. Eliminate the duplicates and clean up the categories.
The addition of a forum is a good idea, but there are many other forums available that are widely used, so perhaps they could add a resource page with links to local and non-local forums and clubs that point people in the right direction.
A few organization changes and some cosmetic improvements and this site will be ready for retesting.
This is a standard review of the website for Kenneth’s Hair Salon in Columbus, OH. It’s a bright and airy layout. Here’s the site at the time of the test:
What Does This Website Do?
- The website is advertising Kenneth’s Hair Salons & Day Spas. They have several locations in Ohio. They offer several hair services for both men and women, including cutting, coloring, perming, and styling. Their staff ranges from regular hair staff to master stylists. They also provide spa services (facials, massage, etc.), but only at select locations. They have online booking and also sell products online.
- It is the website of a day spa. A place where you can get your nails, hair, and skin taken care of.
- This website is for a beauty and hair salon in Ohio. It advertises and promotes the services, but also serves as an online store for beauty products from their salon.
- This website provides information regarding Kenneth’s Hair Salons and Day Spas. It also sells spa products, and allows the user to book a spa day.
- Kenneth’s Hair Salons and Day Spas provides hair services, spa services and related products in the Columbus, Ohio area.
- This website welcomes viewers and prospective customers to the world of Kenneth’s Hair Salons and Day Spas. It informs the reader as to what services the company offers, locations and products that are offered.
- The website is for a hair salon and day spa.
- This is the website for Kenneth’s Hair Salons and Day Spas. On the top of the website, the viewer can navigate the website through various features such as locations and various services the Spa offers. And on the bottom of the webpage, there is general contact information about the website as well as exclusive links about the company.
- It is about world-class spas in and around Columbus, OH. It provides you with Hair services, Spa Services, Gift Cards, Appointments, Products, locations and a place that tells about the company.
- Kenneth Hair Salons & spas. Includes Twitter & Facebook links in addition to a tab directory. Easy to find contact information and easy to make an appt.
Best Current Feature
- The website is easy to navigate. If I were to book an appointment, their phone number is right on the first page. I also like the ability to do online booking (especially for a person like me who is on the computer all the time).
- It’s a very attractive website! And easy to search.
- The picture of the model is eye catching and elegant.
- I like the fact that you can purchase some of the products used at the spa online for at home use.
- I love the price list! I tend to shy away from salons where I don’t know the pricing and it’s very elusive. This makes it all crystal clear.
- The best feature of this website is its interface. It is easy to navigate and receive the information needed.
- The design; color, fonts and images are very eye-catching.
- I do like the color and font scheme as they go well with the feeling of a “day spa.” On top of that, I like the website navigation at the top of the web page; very organized and thorough with the listings in a logical order for the viewer.
- I think the best feature is the Hair and Spa services. It tells you a little bit about each service that they offer.
- Attractive layout! Not overwhelming and easy to view the page. Picture fits site perfectly.
The reviewers find the site very attractive and easy to navigate. The right amount of information is provided, it’s organized very well, and it’s all easy to find. In designing a site, this is your goal.
What could be added to make it even better?
One Thing To Improve
- When I click on ‘About Us’, it doesn’t do anything. This should take you to some default page, like the other labels at the top (Home, Hair Services, etc). The menu options should function the same.
- When looking at the products, I wished that the picture would be bigger, so I can read the contents of the product. Showing the back of the product would be good as well.
- I think the use of more colors would be great. It would make the site more vibrant and visually appealing.
- I would like to see more images. But more specifically, I would like to see examples of work, especially for hair extensions.
- On the button for recommending Kenneth’s, I like how the piggy bank evokes potential money, but I would add something that says “affiliate program” or “referral program.” I know I’ve done searches for this before in Google to try and find potential sources of income, so maybe that would help with gaining traffic from those keyword phrases. I would also like to see an explanation page for shipping rates for products. I noticed that there is a “free shipping” offer for orders over a certain amount. But are the other items flat rate shipping for continental US or based on weight.
- I would allow the casual observer access to the money saving offers for the spa. When a person clicks on the link to it, it brings them to a sign in page. People need to see the offers before they’d be willing to take the time to sign in and register.
- Maybe larger fonts and more color.
- In my opinion, I believe a little bit more can be done with the website navigation at the top of the web page. Perhaps rolling over each link could create a drop-down menu that gives the viewer even more options under that said link. For example, if you were to rollover “Hair Services” at the top, a smaller menu could drop down giving you additional links to the specific hair services offered.
- I think you should put testimonies of the people that have gone to one of the hair salon and day spas or even have a review page on the site.
- It looks great as it. To improve maybe include a tab for any awards or articles that have featured this company. Maybe also include a tab or section to view different style options or current hair styles.
Really great feedback, and very simple things to incorporate into the site. Include photos of the contents of the products, or add that to the description, show some testimonials and actual hair styles, as well as a gallery of styles within the range of their stylists. Clean up the navigation links and make them all work the same; either have them all drop into lists or all contain lists on a default page.
The design is clean and relaxing, they offer a shop for their products and you can book appointments online. With the changes above the site would be nearly perfect and ready for retesting.
This example is of the Ruby Room website, a flash heavy but very pretty site for a spa located in Chicago. Here’s the main site, after the flash intro, at the time of the test:
What Does This Website Do?
- This website provides information about the Ruby Room, a spa, and its specific services and items.
- Great interactive site with music that one would correlate with spa and relaxing. The red paired with black & white pictures is visually appealing.
- It is a website of a spa.
- The website is for a spa offering salon and healing services.
- This website offers a variety of relaxing/beautifying options through a salon, a spa and a healing room.
- The website is for a spa that offers beauty and health services.
- This site provides information about the purpose of the Ruby Room, including spa, salon, and wellness services, and special events.
- It is for a business. It is a spa, salon and hotel all in one. The website is designed to tell you about the business and what they offer.
- This is the website of a place in Chicago that offers a spa, a salon, guest rooms, beauty, health and wellness treatments and more.
- This website for Ruby Room, which is based in Chicago, allows you to view prices for spa services, book rooms for overnight stays, and shop for luxury items.
Best Current Feature
- I thoroughly enjoy the music.
- The front page is very attractive.
- I like that the pictures transition to full color from gray scale in the home page.
- The address at the top keeps the potential customer from having to search for contact information.
- I like the fact that it opens with a little mission statement that binds the site together. It unifies the website with a theme.
- The best feature is the organization, which is very easy to understand through tabs and different pages, and the colorful look of the site with the nice red and pictures.
- The best feature of this web site is the description of the ‘intuitive services’. Many people probably do not know what those services entail, so the descriptions are helpful.
- I like that it is inviting by telling you right away what they have to offer and that they have been reviewed or recommended by recognizable names.
- The wide variety of services is beautifully described and put in pictures, I got really drawn in. I also like the pictures of the staff.
- The visitor can easily navigate through the site, thanks to the headings at the top of the screen. Additionally, the drop-down menus are wonderfully helpful and perfectly succinct.
All of the important things stuck out to at least one reviewer; description of services, contact information, site design (it’s representative of your physical business, especially important when conveying relaxation and beauty) and navigation. This is the bare minimum for a site promoting your retail business.
One Thing To Improve
- I think that reducing the size of “gift cards” and monthly specials would be good. Add flash reviews/ratings instead of links to other sites. Also, adding pictures of their wedding services and other “real” pictures of someone getting their services would be awesome.
- Display images of services being performed. Add text to the front page that summarizes the spa services.
- I think that featuring some main products or services on the front page would show customers the kinds of things offered at first glance.
- Add a couple pictures or objects on the pages with blank spaces on the sides (such as the spa pages for facials, waxing, etc.) You could possibly put it there instead of the “don’t forget the rubypoints” box. This box could be on the homepage and then have a much smaller box on the subsequent pages. As it is, I think a picture or something along those lines would help.
- There could be a more detailed listing of payment methods.
- Add an online appointment booking feature.
- Slow down the initial flash object as I felt it was distracting and I wasn’t sure I even wanted to stay on the page. Then it took awhile to load the important information on the page. I would prefer to see all of that right away without the flash object first since all it was was distracting and I couldn’t even tell you what it said.
- On some pages there are testimonials at the bottom. They change very fast, I was hardly ever able to finish reading one when the next one already appeared.
- When you click on a service, such as “Facials” or “Massage,” the mission statement always comes up at the top. Repetition at the beginning of the page often causes people to disregard the messages that follow. Furthermore, each service includes a lengthy description. Paring down the amount of text would be beneficial. One other thing I noticed is that the bullets in the Ruby Points section on the left side of the screen are not inside of the text box. That makes the Ruby Points section look like a sloppy afterthought.
There are some good suggestions here. They could be incorporated with one suggestion I would add: move the initial flash (mission statement followed by photos) to a splash page that loads only once upon visiting the site. Once loaded, provide navigation to an index page that contains a summary of the spa, the services, and some of the featured products. Direct the link on the logo in the top left corner to the index page, rather than to the beginning of the flash page.
Aside from having to load the flash each time you click back to the home page, flash is not viewable on mobile devices, and you don’t want to limit the potential client who is in the neighborhood and searching for the services you provide on their iPhone, or spotted your business while having lunch across the street and is wanting to know more. If you don’t offer a mobile version of your site, limit the amount of flash to wade through.
In addition to the above, slow down the testimonials, add an online booking feature and some photos of some the actual services being provided. Then retest the site, or go straight for additional improvement suggestions, to find out if the reviewers were right.