Right now, it seems, nothing fires up a design debate better than the term ‘Web 2.0′. For every positive argument for features like drag and drop – there is a counter argument relating to conversion rates. For every advocate of a single page checkout – there is the overall Customer Experience to think about. And so it goes on: semantic web, widgets, mashups or folksonomies etc….lets not even go there.
But the debate, and the point at which web design is at today, does mask the simple rule that great web design is (and always has been) about implementing appropriate design – as opposed to doing simply what is technically possible.
Yesterday, two more insightful pieces emerged that might well fan the flames of debate for a while yet, with both pieces sitting on the ‘pragmatic but effective’ side of the fence.
First up e-consultancy reported how Argos is beating their competition with “user friendly web design” (disclosure: this is a design implemented by Salmon). And secondly, Mike Southon (in an FT piece) in reference to Will McInnes (from NixonMcInnes) debates a possibly counter-intuitive suggestion of “having an ugly but effective website.”
What is clear is that if you are investing in web design you need a thorough, detailed, holistic understanding of web 2.0. And because every brand is different, finding out where to draw the line between ‘appropriate’ and ‘possible’ is a smart move indeed.
Today Salmon announced yet another successful series of eCommerce projects, implemented for three of The Regatta Group’s clothing brands:- Hawkshead, Craghoppers and Dare2b.
Citing a solution that was “quick to implement” would “scale to meet customer needs” and the provision of “all the tools necessary for online marketing and promotion of our brands”, Chris Bulmer’s (Group IT Director) full comments can be read here.
The full press release highlights how Regatta had little control over their previous website infrastructure which was increasingly disparate and outsourced across various suppliers. By using SAFE(TM), Regatta lowered development costs and obtained the ability to implement multiple production ready eCommerce solutions quickly and efficiently. As a result, each Regatta brand is ideally placed to develop additional websites to embrace new geographies, propositions, market segments or customer types quickly and easily.
The Hawkshead site was implemented and launched in just 35 days. Craghoppers and Dare2b will launch in August and September respectively.
Hot on the heels of our announcements concerning the nine Scotts & Co brands (here and here) – I wanted to flag an announcement we made today relating to Kiddicare.
Kiddicare are the leading online supplier of nursery products, and they purchased SAFE™ with a view to evolving its online capabilities and optimising the customer experience whilst significantly lowering the risks traditionally associated with launching or replacing an existing eCommerce platform.
Our online business accounts for 80% of our revenues and our plans for growth are aggressive. We replaced our existing platform with SAFE™ as we needed to obtain control of our eCommerce business. Our online plans are sophisticated and we need to address our requirements with a higher degree of autonomy, flexibility and responsiveness to change.
Scott Weavers-Wright, Partner, Kiddicare
Since the new eCommerce solution went live, Kiddicare have been voted online nursery retailer of the year by Mother and Baby magazine and a recent online survey completed by 30,000 customers highlighted 98% would recommend Kiddicare.com.
The complete press release is here.
For retailers and consumers, Cross-channel retailing is a reality. It may not be prevalent right now but it will be in the next two years.
First-movers, emerging as clear leaders in the second half of 2008, will reap the benefits of early investment. Competitors will feel the pinch, not just when analysing next year’s annual results to see what went wrong, but more immediately as the weeks and months pass by without being able to formulate a coherent response.
OK, you’ve heard it all before, many times over, ever since the emergence of the web a decade ago as first a showcase and then as a retail channel in its own right. You heard it five years ago when the mobile industry began touting the notion of presence-based one-to-one marketing. And you also heard elements of it twenty years ago when the deployment of distributed IT systems promised to integrate retail, point-of-sale, warehousing, distribution and just-in-time logistics to span the entire supply chain in a pre-Internet universe.
This time it’s different (and you’ve heard that one before as well). This time the technology actually exists to help implement what’s promised. This time the experience and processes are in place to make it a reality. This time round, above all, you’ve got no choice but to make it happen. Everything that’s happened before, whatever the hype, can be seen now in retrospect as a stuttering step to where we are today, a precipice leading to an inevitable future of inextricably linked channels from which retailers, whatever their size, cannot dare contemplate stepping back.
Download Salmon’s free eBook to read more.
ZDNet Asia reports that Bangalore has retained its position as the ideal global delivery location for businesses, according to a new report from IDC.
The research analyst’s Global Delivery Index (GDI) indicated that India is still the offshoring country of choice. In its second edition, IDC’s GDI ranks 35 cities in the region based on criteria such as labor and rent costs, language skills and political risk.
But China is hot on India’s heals.
Beijing made significant progress moving up three places, with the investment in Beijing’s infrastructure and the environment for the upcoming Olympic Games sharpening the city’s competitive edge.
“With prices on the rise in India, locations like Beijing with established infrastructure and lower costs will be in demand, Beijing also has a highly skilled workforce, supported by a strong education network.” Jenna Griffin, Senior Research Analyst for global delivery services research, IDC Asia-Pacific.
Here are the Top 10 Global Delivery Locations:
There is more commentary from ZDNet Asia here.
As part of our efforts with Scotts and Co (more in this post) eCommerce solutions for Presents Direct, The Original Gift Company, Stow Grange and Renwoods have all gone live.
An interesting piece by Avinoam Nowogrodski, the CEO of Clarizen, a provider of project execution solutions in CRM Buyer today.
As Avinoam correctly points out, much is being made of Web 2.0 and the implications for businesses and customers alike. I’ve long since lost count of the items I’ve read describing the benefits of new personalization technologies, user-generated content, social networking, RSS, and Ajax-based user interfaces etc. And rightly so. But it is really fascinating to see Web 2.0 focused on from a new angle for a change.
eCommerce projects & Project delivery. A subject close to our heart.
Avinoam points out that, “the convergence of SaaS (Software as a Service) and Enterprise 2.0-based collaboration technologies has produced the next generation of project management applications”…..<and that>…..”the next generation of project systems provides a significant advantage for companies in completing their complex e-commerce projects on time and increases their competitive edge.”