To finish up our Design for Mobile Commerce series, I asked four of my colleagues to participate in a brief survey of mobile retail sites. Our goal with this survey was to investigate actual user experience and functionality on mobile devices. Not what the top 10 or 20 retailers are doing, but what happens when someone has a need and tries to meet that need on their mobile device.
To that end, I gave each of us a task to accomplish on a specific site and a short list of questions about the process. We’ll publish one survey every day this week.
When I started this series, I thought responsive design was the way to go, hands down. After conducting multiple interviews and reading through the results of this survey, I’m less enthusiastic. Read on to see why.
What is your task today?
Look for a retailer in my neighborhood that carries Kitchenaid mixers.
Did you accomplish it? How easy was it?
Yes, somewhat. They don’t make it easy for me to find the link to click. The font size is so small and the link to find retailers is on the top left corner, which is hard to see without zooming in. I think most people will get frustrated and leave the site.
Once I got to the find a retailer page, I had to type in my zip. It would be nice if there was a pop-up window that asks if I want to use my current location. It’s something that is common these days when browsing on mobiles. I also found a broken link on that page.
Here is a good example I came across recently: inov-8.com. The company doesn’t have a mobile site either, but their site is so easy to browse on mobile. When I find the product that I’m interested in, there’s a link on the bottom of the product page to locate the retailers near me. That is so smart and convenient!
Did you do anything else on the website?
I looked for mixers on the site. The main navigation makes it easy to find what I look for. However, when I got to the mixer page, some mixer images weren’t available and some didn’t load correctly. It’s hard to navigate through the products without zooming what I want to look at.
Do you think this site is responsive, mobile-specific, or something else? Why?
Kitchenaid doesn’t have a mobile site or it doesn’t detect my device. The desktop version is hard to navigate on mobile. I wanted to leave the moment I got there.
If you had reason to, would you use this website again, or go to a competitor?
I wouldn’t. If I’m looking for a product info, I will go to other sites like amazon.com or target.com.
What device did you use?
Conclusion: Get a mobile strategy, Kitchenaid.