28Sep

New Look Autostyle.co.za

old homepage

old homepage

Recently the Autostyle website was given a facelift. Many new features on screen and behind the scenes were implemented to keep up with current trends and usability.

Right from the start, you’ll notice the site is a lot more wider. On the old site (2 years old) we had to cater for a substantial 800×600 monitor resolution userbase. Fast forward to 2009 using Google Analytics, I can now safely say that minimum monitor resolutions is now at 1024×768.

Colors and side navigation has not strayed too much from the old site. I have grouped the categories further and given the popular Car Audio its own menu bar. The titles of each category is also alot more visible.

Our landing page was given a massive facelift. Search, newsletter & brand locator has been bumped to the top area. We have such a huge amount of information, it was at times quite tricky of showing as much as possible without overcrowding it. I decided on having only 2 featured splash images as opposed to the 4 featured blocks in the past. Perhaps at a later stage we might incorporate an ajax slider.

autostyle

new homepage

The individual product page is where the bulk of our changes have taken place. Fonts are larger, more visible and contents are spaced out better. A “tell a friend” form is permanently visible.

Adding products to your shopping cart is now ajax based improving the user experience and constantly showing the contents and total figure of the cart.

A pleasant surprise after launch was the “add to” social bookmarking icon at the bottom of each product. I’ll post a separate blog post with some of the stats and features.

The product galleries have also been given an overhaul. An extra row is now fitted in due to the wider layout, as well as thumbnail rollover effect. The biggest change however is in the the sorting of the page. Visitors can now sort products in order of recently added, price high to low, as well as view products by thumbnail or a list format.

Under the hood we have used as much css as possible and where possible a tableless layout.
SEO wise we have updated our Meta Description and trimmed down the keywords. Images now have alt descriptions, product pages with the H1 title tags and shortly we’ll implement friendly url’s for our product pages.

All in all, a pretty extensive but not drastic upgrade. What are your thoughts?

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