Web Design

Last Christmas, the John Lewis website took more cash in a single week than the Oxford Steet branch. The website employs 150 people, compared to the department store branch employing more than 700 people.

So I thought it worth mentioning last week’s launch of the new JohnLewis.com web design.

They are describing the redesign as a ‘more aspirational look’ that tries to be more like the in store experience.

So, what does this mean in practical terms?

  1. A new Liquid layout means that the site stretches to fit any user’s particular screen resolution, resulting in a consistent design looks great no matter what width it’s looked at. I’m pleased to report the Hallam website became liquid about 18 months ago.
  2. Greater access to John Lewis’ greatest asset: it’s associates (that means the sales people.) Real staff have been recording podcasts; indeed the fitness equipment podcast nearly persuaded me to part with two grand, except for the fact the check out wasn’t working….
  3. Lighter, brighter design with less of the grey around the logo and navigational areas
  4. New site navigation that offers clusters of choices within each sub menu.
  5. Lots more products, images, and content.

And my personal views of the changes?

  1. For some reason as yet unknown to me, I can’t checkout. I put gloriously expensive stuff in my basic, click Checkout, and I pop back to the Home page. Frustrating, to say the least.
  2. I’m not too keen on the new drop down menus. My forty-something coordination means as I recklessly aim for items on the far right of the new drop down sub menus, I inadvertently end up closing the menu by accident. Damn.
  3. But overall I love the new design. Wonderful pictures, sensible menu suggestions, oodles of useful information. It makes me trust the .com site in just the same way I trust John Lewis.

And that, trust, is what it’s all about.

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