Can I have your first impressions please

Discussion in 'Website & Graphic Reviews' started by nbshopper, May 22, 2009.

  1. nbshopper

    nbshopper
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    Hi,

    We're a web startup in the process of launching a new shopping site in the UK. But cracking the market is proving much trickier than we thought. We're only a small team so don't have limitless resources, and needless to say we've put a lot of our time into this project as we can see it has huge potential.

    Without going into a long explanation here, I wonder if you have a few spare moments, you might take a look at our site and give me your feedback / first impressions.

    a) Do you get it?
    b) Do you like it?
    c) Would you create a pick list yourself?
    d) If not, why not please.

    We're found that while people are using the site for their shopping (which is great), they aren't really taking the time to create picklists of items in the way we hoped they would.

    Anyway enough talking, all feedback would be very gratefully received.

    Site is naturalbornshopper dot co dot uk

    Thanks,
    n
     
  2. Fergal

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    Welcome to Business Advice Forum nbshopper, thanks for joining and posting your question.

    Your site looks very smart and professionally designed. The design is pleasing on the eye and very user-friendly. Have you looked at what proportion of your visitors are using 800 x 600 screen res, because it is not optimized for that?

    Your SEO probably needs a little bit of attention for example your website's title is extremely important for SEO purposes. Your title says "Natural Born Shopper - UK Social Shopping, Picklists, Wishlists, Reviews, Advice, Community". A lot of the words in that title are probably not doing you any favors in terms of SEO. As an example is it realistic that someone will type "Wishlists" into Google and (1) find your site and (2) for your site to be the type of site they are looking for.

    a) Do you get it?
    Yes, I think so.

    b) Do you like it?
    Yes I like the design as stated above. I also think the concept is great. Social network shopping - excellent.

    c) Would you create a pick list yourself? & d) If not, why not please.
    Probably not to be honest. Most of my online shopping involves buying books from Amazon, I'm happy with Amazon and don't feel any need to purchase elsewhere. I could be wrong, but I'd imagine the "picklist" concept is more appealing to a female market?

    It might help if you made the commission structure for sales from picklist easier to find.

    You have a search facility, that brings up various products for sale - is it possible to search picklists for products?

    Everytime I click a product, I'm brought to a new window and away from your site. I'm not sure that I really like that. Is it possible to keep visitors on your site, when they are purchasing?

    It might help to include a link to FAQ's in your "Help and Advice" area.

    Your Facebook application was a bit demanding in my opinion. When I clicked the Facebook button I expected to be brought to a profile or fan page for your site and I was ready to join or add. However, I didn't like the idea of you sending info to my wall or me giving you my friends info. Hence I didn't proceed with it. A fan page might be a good option, for people like me, who are wary of giving that level of control.

    It's a beautiful site and an excellent concept. Please keep us updated as to how it is going for you and please do let us know if you have any further questions or you feel there is anything else we can help with.


    (Moving thread to Online Business forum!)
     
  3. simplyjo

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    a) Do you get it? - yeah ofcourse
    b) Do you like it? Yes I do - It's easy to browse and totally user friendly
    c) Would you create a pick list yourself? - No
    d) If not, why not please. - Coz I'm not from UK, If this was a site in India, I'd be off choosing my products right away :)
     
  4. nbshopper

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    Thanks so much for the replies. Really interesting and useful to read.

    @Fergal - You have a very good point about the SEO. The trouble is it's hard to know which terms to target. But I certainly think I should be aiming a little wider perhaps, wishlists isn't exactly a highly searched term.

    I think the commission structure should be made clearer yes... To make sure people understand that they can earn money by referring products on the site.

    @simplyjo glad you like the site as well, you can always create a list anyway though, even if it's for the wrong country.

    Many thanks for taking the time to check the site out though, it's much appreciated... We just need to find a way to bring it to the market quicker and make the site more popular.
     
    #4 nbshopper, May 23, 2009
    Last edited: May 23, 2009
  5. Hurbel2k

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    I was looking at some electronic stuff and suddenly I found myself on digitaldirect.co.uk. Dunno why.

    Apart from that I don't shop in general we-sell-everything shops, especially since the selection within the categories is sometimes quite small.
     
  6. nbshopper

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    Ok thanks for the reply. Quite on the contrary, we feature all the products from hundreds of different shops, that's why you ended up on digitaldirect.co.uk. We feature all their products on our site, along with all the products from many other shops. You can see a full list here for example
    uk shop directory

    We have partner agreements with all these shops, who then let us display all their products on our site, so when people search for something we can search all these stores straight away. There are currently about 5 million products, plus additional ones that members add to the site manually.

    Fergal mentioned about being able to search the picked products, well in fact you can already. If you do a search for garden furniture for example. The products at the top are the ones which have been picked out by our members. The results below them are ordered by relevance from the remaining results from our database.

    The aim is to give users a popularity ordered, individually chosen selection of products, while still giving people the widest choice possible.

    As for ending up on a different website, I understand why this could be confusing. So I think we're going to introduce an interstitual page which tells users they are leaving our site and going to a merchants site.

    Thanks for all the feedback, welcome any other comments people might have, it's all really valuable information to us.
     
  7. nbshopper

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    And oh, by the way, we've got a Facebook page (prominent on the home page, but we should probably make it more obvious throughout), but I think the Facebook aspect you're refering to is Facebook Connect, which is the technology Facebook released last December.

    We were very excited to be one of the first sites in the world to use it and it means you can just enter your Facebook details to, in effect, have an account on naturalbornshopper - which means it's one less registration in life! Plus it then means you can send your Pick lists etc straight to your friends. But it sounds like we need to emphasise that we DON'T get your facebook details/username/password if you login like that. Facebook doesn't release that info via their API.
     
  8. Nazreen

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    I would have advised that you start out by listing your products in ebay and yahoo auctions and have a link to your online store in those listings, but your site is not a normal online store. It's more like a directory of products which are being sold by other online stores.

    Upon visiting your site, I would also agree that it's nicely done and looks very professional. I guess all it needs work on is on SEO. What type of marketing have you already done for your site? Have you tried youtube marketing? How about distribution of flyers/brochures to communities?
     
  9. nbshopper

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    Thanks again for the feedback.

    Just wondering if you could give any more specific advice about the seo? Contrary to the previous posts I have actually tried to give it a certain amount of consideration. With use of title and heading tags etc. I'd be interested to know if anyone has any more specific ideas about ways to improve it though.

    I think the best thing I can do at the moment is get more people aware of the site and using it to promote their businesses. I'm glad to see there was a user who signed up just this morning who's added a pair of glasses from their website to a picklist. As people can add items from anywhere, creating a list of products from your own site is a pretty quick and easy way to get a link back, as well as promoting your products on a big shopping site.

    Another way I'm really keen to promote is our partners scheme, which splits any commissions we make with other websites (an affiliate scheme effectively). You can read more about this here, but it's pretty cool. I'd love to get any feedback people have on that too.
    http://www.naturalbornshopper.co.uk/partners

    Thanks again
     
  10. Fergal

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    Thanks for the update nbshopper. Unfortunately I'm having an Internet connection problem just at the minute, but will give you more feedback when I'm back to full speed.

    In relation to your two Facebook buttons - Join & Connect - it might help if you put the two buttons beside each other on your home page. This will give Facebook members a clear choice as to how they want to interact with you via Facebook. When I clicked the "Connect" button I wasn't aware that there was another option.

    Have a look at Google Adwords Keyword Tool, to help with your keyword selection. Once you have decided on the best keywords for your site, you can begin optimizing your pages for those keywords and building links to your site using the keywords in your achor text.

    The idea of being able to pomote your own products through picklists, is very exciting. It might help if you mentioned this facility in the "Create Picklists ..." section in your site header area.
     
  11. Nazreen

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    By the way, I've also registered in your website and created a pick list nbshopper. How does this help you?
     
  12. nbshopper

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    Yeah I noticed, nice list :)

    How does it help me? Umm well I guess it proves that it works... Did you find it simple and easy to do? If anyone buys something from your list then you get a commission on the sale. We also get a commission on any items sold, so it's win-win. If our users pick the coolest items and use the site for their shopping then it's a great shopping website and it makes us commissions.
     
  13. Fergal

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    I also created a PickList. The process was very smooth and user-friendly. The only thing I noticed is that when I did a search for "html" to see what books you had on the subject, I got some very useful results on page two. However, a lot of the listings on the first page of results, were for mobile phones.
     
  14. nbshopper

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    Thanks, I noticed your list. Very nice choices, particularly Twilight... Harry Potter for the next generation isn't it? Lol

    Strange about the HTML books I'll check that out.

    The main issue we're having at the moment is giving people reasons to actually create lists. As you've found it's a simple enough process... But why bother? So I've just made this page.

    Also just putting together an FAQ section as you suggested before, which now appears under the 'Help and Advice' menu.

    Thanks again.
     
  15. Fergal

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    Yes, I'm enjoying reading Twilight, looking forward to watching the movie, when I'm finished the book.

    Do you list any products from Amazon?

    Would it be possible for your members to include their Amazon affiliate ID in their pick list?
     
  16. nbshopper

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    No we don't currently feature anything from Amazon.

    But I just tried using an affiliate link when 'adding a product from the web' to a picklist and it seemed to work just fine. So I guess this does work. Of course we (at nbs) don't get any commission from this sale and therefore don't offer list commission or cashback through nbs itself, but you'd get 100% of the cashback from your links in the traditional affiliate way, directly from Amazon.
     
  17. Fergal

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    Being able to add an Amazon affiliate ID would be attractive to many affiliate marketers who are looking for promotion opportunities. Perhaps it would help to promote this on affiliate marketing sites and webmaster communities.

    I've added you to Twitter, become a fan on Facebook and twitted about your site.
     
  18. nbshopper

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    Thanks, really appreciate the mention!

    Yesterday we also launched some rather cool picklist widgets which allow people to create a list on our site, then copy and paste a quick bit of code and insert on their own blog or website to show their list. It's very cool I think and might be perfect for people with wedding websites for example, as they could create a list of stuff they want, then include that list on their wedding website directly.

    That's the market we're aiming for anyway. You can see a list widget in action here http://bit.ly/2KJg2

    Of course users would also get any commissions from sales from their list as well, so I think this is rather neat.
     
  19. Fergal

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    I like that, put up a wish list and benefit on the double. People buy you presents you want and you get a commission from their purchase.
     
  20. Hurbel2k

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    If I suddenly get to another website and I don't know how that happened my alarm bells ring "SCAM". You should fix that.

    Or explicitly state it: You are looking for electronics, therefore You are forwarded to our partner some-website.com
     

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