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MacBytes
Oct 25, 2004, 03:30 PM
Category: News and Press Releases
Link: Apple website a poor online experience? (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20041025163033)
Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)

Approved by Mudbug

Blue Velvet
Oct 25, 2004, 03:36 PM
There's not much in here about Apple -- just that little list at the top where thay come in above IBM.

But I would agree. I find their site slow-loading, confusing, clumsy forum interface, poor use of colour for navigation purposes, search a bit picky...

stoid
Oct 25, 2004, 03:38 PM
I remember back in the day that Apple got some mad props for having a simple and straight forward site. I guess in terms of trying to find the perfect computer for you though, their store isn't the best. I've also noticed that the search function in the Apple Online Store is really bad.

zulgand04
Oct 25, 2004, 03:41 PM
I find Apples site alot easier to find and use as a educationa user then dells that takes 50 steps just to get what you want then starts to preconfigure things you don't want it to.

Dell sucks
Apple good

NOV
Oct 25, 2004, 03:42 PM
I agree...especially the Dutch localized version of the store is a mess. What disturbs me most is the fact that a lot of items haven't been translated and regularly you'll find bits of all kinds of languages throughout the site.

Lately I also had a strange experience when I tried to order a blue tooth equipped Mac with a blue tooth mouse/ kb. It came back with a strange message that I couldn't order the specific set up and something was missing. But it left me in the dark about how to correct the order.

wordmunger
Oct 25, 2004, 03:54 PM
What percentage of the study subjects were Apple users? I bet the most common complaint about Apple's site was this: why can't I buy a windows computer? Dell's site is unbelievably complicated: I find it practically impossible to figure out what computer I'm buying, and what the difference between their various models is. If you know nothing about computers, I suppose it might be satisfying: whatever your budget, we've got a computer for you!

Keynoteuser
Oct 25, 2004, 04:03 PM
This is silly.

#1 Dell is ONLY a store, no one goes there for news and cool info.

#2 Apple's store is totally different from their normal site

#3 Anyone ever tried buying something from the Dell store? It's got to be the WORST buying experience I have ever seen. How can it come out on top? Compare it to the Apple store and it's night and day...the choices are easy to see on Apple's site, and all the options make it SO easy to buy something. In the Dell store you get lost on the first page. You have to answer what kind of user you are...what if you are both home and business. Okay, now, wait, there's 8 models to choose from, but they all sort of look the same, now what? Okay, I picked one, but there are 3 pages of options, and some don't make any sense...now what?

This stuff just makes me shake my head.

bousozoku
Oct 25, 2004, 04:05 PM
When I read the article before submitting the link, I kept questioning "what metrics?" They never explain anything about their methodology in testing and quantifying what is good and what is poor. If they're saying that Apple doesn't have as many computers from which to choose and that makes a bad experience, I think Dr. Brown should go back to school.

There are times when I find the Apple site frustrating. They don't provide end-to-end solutions. They don't care about people who already have a computer, in that, they make it difficult to find video cards and other hardware that would be an upgrade. However, if you're buying a computer, it's simpler than most, and that definitely includes Dell's site.

stoid
Oct 25, 2004, 04:07 PM
This is silly.

#1 Dell is ONLY a store, no one goes there for news and cool info.

#2 Apple's store is totally different from their normal site

#3 Anyone ever tried buying something from the Dell store? It's got to be the WORST buying experience I have ever seen. How can it come out on top? Compare it to the Apple store and it's night and day...the choices are easy to see on Apple's site, and all the options make it SO easy to buy something. In the Dell store you get lost on the first page. You have to answer what kind of user you are...what if you are both home and business. Okay, now, wait, there's 8 models to choose from, but they all sort of look the same, now what? Okay, I picked one, but there are 3 pages of options, and some don't make any sense...now what?

This stuff just makes me shake my head.

Maybe the guy who interpreted the results was holding the paper upside down. The actual results show that Apple is second only to IBM and Dell is scraping rock bottom.

musicpyrite
Oct 25, 2004, 04:11 PM
The only things I really find bad about Apple's site is that:
- search functions sucks!!!!
- forums are a little messy
- sometimes hard to detailed information

Dell is even worse imo.

JeffTL
Oct 25, 2004, 04:25 PM
Dell's page has always struck me as kind of cluttered and confusing -- but part of that is probably just that they have too many models. And it takes too many clicks to get to any info on the damn computers! The Apple page has more useful marketing type stuff and cleaner design so you can find your information, pick a Mac, and buy it.

IBM really is lousy -- their computers are good, but their website makes it kind of hard to buy one.

el_aarono
Oct 25, 2004, 04:43 PM
Dell's page has always struck me as kind of cluttered and confusing -- but part of that is probably just that they have too many models. And it takes too many clicks to get to any info on the damn computers! The Apple page has more useful marketing type stuff and cleaner design so you can find your information, pick a Mac, and buy it.


I totally agree and was very surprised to see Apple at the bottom of the list. I used to try to see what it would cost to pick up a Dell laptop comparable to Apple's laptops, but after configuring one machine for about 10 minutes (only slight exaggeration) I decided I had much better things to do with my time. Dell's site was muchos frastratos in my opinion. Way too many choices for me, but you should see how long it takes me to pick out a deodorant or a tooth brush. :) Also, the overall appearance of Apple's site is so clean and simple, and Dell's is just... ugly. Amazon's isn't too bad though and generally works very efficently.

Improvements:

1.) Apple's site could use some work in the discussions, but I haven't yet been to a site that let me search the forums and quickly find just what I'm looking for.

2.) Put a link to the retail store locations on the online store site. It's on the homepage at the very bottom. A store locator link should be prominently displayed on any online store page.

l8r

edit: logic

Keynoteuser
Oct 25, 2004, 04:54 PM
What has always surprised me about the computer market is that when you are a video professional, or use your Mac for serious heavy duty work and need a beefy machine...trying to go and buy a PC with the same stuff is STILL expensive.

I decided I probably should add a cheap PC laptop to my collection just so I could test stuff on it. When I started looking, all the cheap laptops had lousy graphics or other missing features. When I finally got what I wanted, it was about the same price as a PowerBook. Maybe apple can't compete in the cheap market where the actual use of the machine is simply for web and games, and the price is what matters for the buyer, but in the pro market, where you really want to get work done, the price difference is gone, and apple's buying experience is MUCH better. I just have to wonder how much dells sales would INCREASE if they overhauled their store and made it more streamlined. It's just a giant mess now.

Sharewaredemon
Oct 25, 2004, 05:15 PM
Dell's page has always struck me as kind of cluttered and confusing -- but part of that is probably just that they have too many models. And it takes too many clicks to get to any info on the damn computers! The Apple page has more useful marketing type stuff and cleaner design so you can find your information, pick a Mac, and buy it.

IBM really is lousy -- their computers are good, but their website makes it kind of hard to buy one.

I agree, although the apple site is not the fastest, and the search function is terrible.
I agree that buying a first time computer is a lot easier on the apple site.
Also, when it comes to custimizing it, it is a lot easier,everything on one page that is directly computer related, and then the add ons (printers, additional softwear) on the next.

There definetly is way to much on the dell site, I think the problem is that they show specs when they first show the picture of the computer, which is something they could avoid, the only problem is that with apple, the computers are distinctive so you can tell by the picture. Also, on the apple site (edu excluded) they show the prices of the computers so you know what computer you want by your price range.

powermac99
Oct 25, 2004, 05:21 PM
- search functions sucks!!!!


You've gotta be kidding me. The new search tool is so much better than that of any other store. Granted the old one was terrible, bringing up any computer on which you could install software for a search for "Microsoft Office" as the first options (hint: every single current mac), but the new version, which has been live for several months, actually shows Office as the first five options.

Come on guys, you can't bash the new search, it's much much much better than anything else.

chanoc
Oct 25, 2004, 05:25 PM
I have no issues about the Apple Store Online. Buy from there all the time, and why I do: free shipping to Alaska; easy to configure a system; easy steps to purchase from the student store; placing an order is easy, fast email comfirmation, tracking number email; navigation menu at the top appears on all pages for easy navigation. Did I mention easy? :)

NinjaMonkey
Oct 25, 2004, 05:42 PM
I think Apple's site is laid out pretty well. Dell on the other hand just looks thrown together. The store looks like a mess.

I really don't see how Apple scored so low.

Phatpat
Oct 25, 2004, 05:48 PM
I bet many people who participated in the study had been to Dell's site before. The numbers who had been to apple's site before would probably be drastically less. I didn't see this accounted for.

musicpyrite
Oct 25, 2004, 06:22 PM
You've gotta be kidding me. The new search tool is so much better than that of any other store. Granted the old one was terrible, bringing up any computer on which you could install software for a search for "Microsoft Office" as the first options (hint: every single current mac), but the new version, which has been live for several months, actually shows Office as the first five options.

Come on guys, you can't bash the new search, it's much much much better than anything else.

http://search.info.apple.com/?search=Go&lr=lang_en&kword=&q=single%20user%20mode

90 results? Too much for me. But I do agree that the new search function is better than the old one.

http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/72008/wo/IE3c0p8FIIRc2TN9UVH2fOAURzQ/0.0.9.1.0.6.11.1.0.0.1

wtf? Why do I get results for the iMac, when I typed in eMac?

jettredmont
Oct 25, 2004, 06:25 PM
Interestingly (or not), the "Keynote" group isn't describing how they ranked the various sites, what instructions they gave their users, etc. It appears that the instructions were rather generic, like "Buy a computer with x and y and z", or perhaps even lethally specific ("Include Windows XP Pro and Microsoft Office").

The far more enlightening studies take consumers about to make a shopping decision, study the steps they take to make their decision, and where they end up, and use that information to evaluate web site effectiveness. Generally, it seems that in most shopper-oriented studies Apple comes out either right at the top or 1-2 down in the list of competitors. I don't think I've ever seen a "9/10" rating (especially where Dell rated so highly).

From my own personal experience, Dell's site is very nice if you have a specific set of pre-determined options that you want to include, written out on paper in the order Dell presents them. If you want to know what Option X means, you won't get a straight answer from Dell other than, "It's really cool and you need it," or, "It's cool, but Option Y is even better!". Dell's site is a horrible place as far as customer education is concerned. Given that it ranked so highly, I can only conclude that the study started off with a checklist of features and told their little hamsters to find their way through Dell's maze checking off the features as they came.

Apple's site, IMHO, is significantly better than anywhere else I've shopped at giving very detailed information about the various options, at an intelligence level at least slightly above that of the Dell interns. Given that Apple performed so poorly in this study, I suspect that this didn't get accounted for, whereas it is absolutely critical in a real-world shopping expedition.

In what real-world scenario would Sony's dense and confusing web site rate higher than Apple's? Unbelievable.

bousozoku
Oct 25, 2004, 06:28 PM
I think Apple's site is laid out pretty well. Dell on the other hand just looks thrown together. The store looks like a mess.

I really don't see how Apple scored so low.

I wonder if all of Dell's competition was in-between Dell and the bottom. That would waken the conspiracist in me. Is Dell secretly behind the study and is Keynote just a marketing company without any science?

wowser
Oct 25, 2004, 06:30 PM
their help forums suck

mmmdreg
Oct 25, 2004, 06:33 PM
Meanwhile, while I was doing work experience at an advertising firm, they were going on about how good the site was due to its consistency and uniformity and relative simple nature. Meanwhile, when i bought a computer off Dell, it was a piss poor experience.. So there ya go.. there's always two sides to the fence.

bousozoku
Oct 25, 2004, 06:33 PM
their help forums suck

They're almost as bad as your post. :rolleyes:

Whose help forums?

Bunzi2k4
Oct 25, 2004, 07:53 PM
hmmm... i always thought apple had a good website, sure i didn't like the forums or the search function, but i don't think amazon is any better. I find apple to be faster than amazon.

whatever

wowser
Oct 25, 2004, 07:55 PM
They're almost as bad as your post. :rolleyes:

Whose help forums?

http://discussions.info.apple.com/

nagromme
Oct 25, 2004, 08:15 PM
Meanwhile, didn't Apple just come out on top in some survey about what computer makers have the best online stores? Like maybe a month ago? I seem to recall Apple rating OK but not great in terms of price but very well overall.

TwitchOSX
Oct 25, 2004, 08:24 PM
Everybody here is talking about the online STORE.. but the headline I see is "Apple Website".. not just the store. I really enjoy the Apple website. Its easy to follow, there is decent navigation at the top.. and the store.. the store is great! You go to the store and you see visual representation of just about everything. You click on it and it gives it to you straight up. Im not seeing the problems. The ONLY issue I have with Apple's site is the search NEVER helps. Seriously. I search for something and it wants to give me some developers link to crap about a motherboard with a defective fuse or something stupid. Anyway.. Apple's site is better than Dells IMO.

TwitchOSX

TwitchOSX
Oct 25, 2004, 08:26 PM
Take a look at Dell's homepage.. and then look at Apple's.. hmm.. which is easier to follow..

bousozoku
Oct 25, 2004, 09:02 PM
Everybody here is talking about the online STORE.. but the headline I see is "Apple Website".. not just the store. I really enjoy the Apple website. Its easy to follow, there is decent navigation at the top.. and the store.. the store is great! You go to the store and you see visual representation of just about everything. You click on it and it gives it to you straight up. Im not seeing the problems. The ONLY issue I have with Apple's site is the search NEVER helps. Seriously. I search for something and it wants to give me some developers link to crap about a motherboard with a defective fuse or something stupid. Anyway.. Apple's site is better than Dells IMO.

TwitchOSX

Well, the study was about the store--the headline I entered was probably too general. :)

solvs
Oct 25, 2004, 09:48 PM
I could concede the #1 slot to Amazon, but Dell? Even PC users talk about how crappy and difficult Dell's is to get around. You think Apple has a sucky search (which they kinda do, Amazon's is ok), try searching at Dell. Or getting support. I've had to do so, and it is not easy. Especially with all those product #'s and codes. Not to mention actually trying to buy something. You want a better way to custom configure a PC? Go to Polywell or Alienware (or build your own). And people complain about not being able to configure Macs, Dell is a nightmare.

I call shenanigans.

gerlitzappel
Oct 25, 2004, 10:09 PM
This is silly.

#1 Dell is ONLY a store, no one goes there for news and cool info.

#2 Apple's store is totally different from their normal site

#3 Anyone ever tried buying something from the Dell store? It's got to be the WORST buying experience I have ever seen. How can it come out on top? Compare it to the Apple store and it's night and day...the choices are easy to see on Apple's site, and all the options make it SO easy to buy something. In the Dell store you get lost on the first page. You have to answer what kind of user you are...what if you are both home and business. Okay, now, wait, there's 8 models to choose from, but they all sort of look the same, now what? Okay, I picked one, but there are 3 pages of options, and some don't make any sense...now what?

This stuff just makes me shake my head.

I agree with you 100%. I am a diehard Mac user and fan. Maybe my opinion is biased in that regard. When you here about the great deals on a Dell and then try to configure one you end up spending 100% more than there originally quoted price, because it doesn't include things like an OS. The Dell site sucks. It is one of the very few sites that actually piss me off. Needless to say I don't waste my time at Dell.com. I love the Apple website. I probably configure a dream machine at least twice a week. I am on it every day looking for the latest news and product updates.

fpnc
Oct 25, 2004, 10:28 PM
Dell was rated highest? The Dell store has to be the most confusing and cluttered online store I've ever used. I've actually wondered whether Dell purposely does this in the hope that a user will order something that they don't really want or need. Like in frustration, "I give up!" and the user then hits the buy button so that s/he can finally put an end to the Dell "experience." I actually cringe anytime I even think about going to the Dell site.

There is something obviously very wrong with this survey. I wonder, maybe they gave extra points (massively) for the total dollar volume in online sales (like if they sell a lot, it must be popular, it must be "good"). Another possibility is that their rating may be based upon large-volume orders, such as what is the buying experience when you want to purchase 500 systems through an enterprise-type account (I've never done that). And lastly, is it possible that they asked people to buy only Windows-based systems or perhaps to comparison shop for similar systems at different vendors? Yes, those last two would be a bit of a problem on Apple's site (can't find PCs on Apple's site).

I find the buying experience at the online Apple Store about as good as it gets (for computer related items). IMO, Apple also has the best online marketing and technical overviews. And isn't Apple.com very often placed on lists of the top, must-see sites on the internet?

Otherwise, I can agree with putting Amazon near the top.

Mainyehc
Oct 26, 2004, 01:18 AM
Fact #1: Mac users "think different[ly]".
Fact #2: Switchers are usually PC users who always thought slightly different[ly], they didn't just notice it until the moment they got their hands on a Mac. This is gonna sound sligtly weird: It's a bit like "stepping out of the closet" :D

Question: Aren't there any Switchers that didn't use to "think different[ly]" UNTIL they tried or purchased a Mac? DEFINITELY. But probably, some Mac user/zealot convinced them to do so in the first place.

Now, WHY oh WHY is Apple still reliant on the zealot, priest-like community? I try not to be too much of an Apple fanatic, and in fact, I don't need to exaggerate and to create too much hype about Macs; I'm studying graphics design in Lisbon Fine Arts School, so every single colleague of mine is a potential Switcher (those who haven't switched already). ;) It's like heaven for me, I won't stand out as that "Mac-head" or something, 'coz we all are Mac-heads one way or another...

Hum... Apple DOES rely on "evangelization". I'm not sure, but they are not insisting too much on the "From the creators of iPod" message... And their on-line experience is very pleasing, yes, but from a Mac user standpoint. I'm a great Mac fan, and I think that Dell computers totally suck, they're FUGLY, and their specs are really not that great... Sure, they have 512MB of RAM standard nearly across the board... but a 40GB HD?? WTF? Not to mention integrated graphics :eek: those really make me so much happier about my "wonderful" GeForce FX 5200 :rolleyes:

BUT... Their online experience IS good. Their website doesn't look as cluttered as your comments made me think. For a newbie, or a "techno-peasant" (oh how I love this awful way of calling them :D), their website is MUCH MORE straight-forward than Apple's. Let's see why:

I myself have been a PC user for years. I got fascinated by staring at the Cube, and the original iMac, etc, etc, etc. However, how could I, a simple PC user, grasp the whole (clean and beatiful) concept of "i" versus "Power" product lines? White/vivid colours vs grey/aluminium... It's fairly EASY to understand, but unless I'm really looking forward to learn all about a brand's entire product lines, I won't learn it all by myself.

You could answer something like "oohh... we don't want those [insert unpleasant word here] coming to the Mac platform"... Excuse me, if I'm going to be an iMac user for my whole life, I shouldn't be forced to learn a lot about Apple's offerings... And as for that romantic ideal that Mac users should all be tech-savvy people that have to be always buying the latest and greatest gadgets: They can BECOME that after they start using Macs, and ONLY if they want to! (I never thought of streaming music to my living room until Apple introduced the Airport Express, and every single PC user to whom I talk about it reacts like if I am insane or something... Ironically, they can already do this too with iTunes)

Have you ever thought that Dell users are just regular people, that would react to Apple products just like we do, if only they didn't felt so intimidated by them? Macs look veeeeery good. But they're still intimidating. Even for the iPod users out there. They're regarded as some alien-like thing. People look at my iMac's screen and keep asking preety dumb questions, like "How do I throw away this file?" "Throw it in the trash, *JUST LIKE YOU'D DO IN WINDOWS*"... People shy away from Macs and Mac OS X, it's the sad truth.

Does it have to remain this way? Absolutely not!! I just don't understand why that "myths and facts" page about Macs and Mac OS X is deeply buried somewhere in Apple.com. Is it under the "Switch" section? Where was that anyway? Under the Mac OS X or the Apple tab? And do people still remember the "Switch" campaign? Do PC users actually know what do we mean by "switching"??... That page, or a more streamlined version of it, should be the opening page for someone going there for the first time. I mean, honestly, there could even be two ways to buy a Mac in the Apple store. The original, current Apple-like one, with each of their product lines neatly organized, with their complete specs, and another, more dell-like wizard, that could guide you through the whole process. They could even try to break some myths while at it. Or they could also try to do that by like having TWO Apple sites. A Mac-user-friendly site, and a PC-user-friendly site. And all this could be achieved with great subtlety, in a friendly, non-discriminatory way. Like having a HUUUUGE "FAQ's on the Mac" banner or something plastered on the opening page! Only those willing to learn some quick *facts* (conveniently under the influence of SJ's RDF ;)) would have to do so.

And, for the 1000000000th time, THINK DIFFERENT... Wasn't the Mac supposed to be "The computer for the rest of us"? Who are the rest of us, anyway? The rest of us who can afford a BMW? The rest of us who CAN'T afford a BMW anymore because we just happened to buy a Mac? Or the computer for the rest of us who can't and will never afford a BMW (but if we did we would buy one in a heartbeat), and can actually afford a cheap eMac, but think only people with a huge sense of style should be allowed to have one??
OR... the rest of us who are FED UP with Micro$haft's evil empire, and their lousy software, plus the not-so-lousy (and sometimes great) x86 hardware?

I must confess you people something... Two years ago, I made an important decision: "I WILL NOT USE WINDOWS XPEE!!". And there was no way I would change my mind. What did I do? I tried Linux. Did I enjoyed my experience? No. Ok, ok, it wasn't a very successful one though. However, I thought, the platform wasn't "mature" enough, and I thought that I could give it a few years to grow, and then I would try it again. But my decision was made, and I had to find another option, and fast. "Hmmmm... there were these expensive Macintosh things... yes, that toaster-like cube thing, and those colourful egg-like things a few years ago... and that desk-lamp thing which I absoluuutely adore!".

And thus, my incredible admiration for the Mac platform was born, but ONLY AFTER I LEARNED A BIT ABOUT IT! Only after I found out that the Mac had a very nice and complete selection of software titles, and a great, stable OS. Coz' before that, the only Macs I had played with were a Colour Classic, running OS 6 or OS 7, back in the day I had a 386 SX running Windows 3.1, and more recently, a red iMac DV running OS 9. And that made me always think about Macs as "cute" and overpriced (which, face it, they still are, only a little less overpriced and more streamlined than ever)... And most PC users who have played with a Mac probably have done so with either a veeeeery old one, in school, or with "some Mac running OS 8-9"... *ouch* :eek:

So, back to the Dell subject... Sure, they have a lot of different models with different pricepoints, and a page where they are lined, from the cheapest to the most expensive. They also have their offerings grouped by "solutions", like Home or Professional, or whatever. Does that make their online experience the best? "The best"?? I'm not so sure. But it surely is easier to unterstand, for the PC crowd, than that clean streamlined look of Apple's store. How is someone supposed to know that PowerBooks are high-end and iBooks are low-end? Ok, there's the whole "Power" thing, and aluminium and all, but how many people know what does the little "i" stand for anyway? (I actually know that's Internet... Ahhh, now I get it... the "Internet Pod", now that I think about it, the "i" in the Pod DOES make sense apart from the marketing standpoint... :rolleyes: *runs to the nearest electronics store to buy his new wireless broadband, AI, neural trasmitter, phaser-enabled 10th Generation iPod Ultra :D)

So, MHO is that Apple should learn something from Dell, and hopefully Dell shouldn't learn anything from Apple so we can keep bashing them and Apple can finally achieve world dominance (like 5 or 6% marketshare) :p

Nermal
Oct 26, 2004, 01:37 AM
I remember trying to buy a Dell laptop for my mum (she needed a Windows computer for some custom software, and Dell had the cheapest prices). The first thing I'm asked is whether I'm a home user, small business, medium business, student...

All I want to do is see a comparison of the computers! I don't want to choose home then find I'm being charged more than if I select small business. And I don't need a bundled printer, thanks, and I shouldn't have to pay extra for firewall software because I already have a hardware firewall. In the end we ended up with a copy of Works that we don't need, as well as a 90 day trial :eek: of Norton AntiVirus, and XP Home (quickly replaced with XP Pro once I discovered how horrible it is).

Apple's site isn't perfect though. When I was considering getting my first Mac, my dad went to apple.com and clicked the .Mac tab up the top. That makes sense - he wanted information about Macs so he clicked the tab that said Mac. What does he get? Information about an online service. Sure, most of the site's fine, but to this day I think that having a .Mac tab isn't a good idea.

gekko513
Oct 26, 2004, 05:59 AM
The Dell site is the best PC buying site I know of. (Not counting the Apple store). I like the Apple store a lot, but it is very lacking in the description and link to more information about third party products, especially games and software. On the other hand, buying a computer is a simple and easy experience on the Apple store, even better than the Dell experience in my opinion.

wrldwzrd89
Oct 26, 2004, 06:20 AM
<snip>
http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/72008/wo/IE3c0p8FIIRc2TN9UVH2fOAURzQ/0.0.9.1.0.6.11.1.0.0.1

wtf? Why do I get results for the iMac, when I typed in eMac?
Don't do this! Strip the session ID from ALL Apple Store URLs if you want to link to something on the Apple Store.

http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/72008/wo/0.0.9.1.0.6.11.1.0.0.1

AmigoMac
Oct 26, 2004, 08:06 AM
DELL site is a hell to follow, those ***** will take you from very nice prices to WTF!!! :eek: ... from $899, sure, but look at the configuration they give you... at the end is a mess to select your right setup, it's messy, looks awful, my grandma could buy from apple in a second... :p

iMeowbot
Oct 26, 2004, 08:22 AM
Don't do this! Strip the session ID from ALL Apple Store URLs if you want to link to something on the Apple Store.

http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/72008/wo/0.0.9.1.0.6.11.1.0.0.1
The problem is, once you strip out that part, the URL doesn't point to anything at all. The above just gets me a page with "No items were found that matched your query."

Inability to easily link to products might be the single biggest problem with the Apple store (and they're not the only offenders, for example HP do it do).

macridah
Oct 26, 2004, 09:09 AM
I think the apple store is a straight forward site and not confusing at all. The only thing I would add is that it's been practically the same look and feel for years.

bousozoku
Oct 26, 2004, 09:46 AM
...
Apple's site isn't perfect though. When I was considering getting my first Mac, my dad went to apple.com and clicked the .Mac tab up the top. That makes sense - he wanted information about Macs so he clicked the tab that said Mac. What does he get? Information about an online service. Sure, most of the site's fine, but to this day I think that having a .Mac tab isn't a good idea.

It was a lot less confusing when it had "iTools" there, instead of ".Mac".

unoriginl
Oct 26, 2004, 10:25 AM
Really, this is the classic Windows vs. OS X argument. As a former Windows guru, I used to go to websites like dell.com and compaq.com etc. (Of course, now I only go there when I have to for someone else).

So here's the problem. The Dell website is just like Windows. You first go there and you are presented with a less-than-ideal default configuration. Once you find your way in, everything is a mess. Nobody cared about aesthetics, they just shoved as much information on the higher levels as they could. Nobody cared about usability, they just added new crap on to old crap... I'm sure you see the similarities.

On the other hand, the Apple site just works (for the most part). You click something, you get info about it. When you shop for a portable, the most important info to make your decision is presented on the FIRST page: Screen size and price. No Click for home user, click for portables.

So... it just like I tell my friends still stuck in the Windows mind-set. You can do all the same things on a Mac as on Windows (and some things you can't do on Windows at all). The difference is I can do it faster and more intuitively than you can. It doesn't make sense to you b/c you're trained on obfuscation and you can't conceive of a system that's made to serve you instead of a system that you serve.

I am so thankful I saw the light. :)

Sharewaredemon
Oct 28, 2004, 10:05 AM
I myself have been a PC user for years. I got fascinated by staring at the Cube, and the original iMac, etc, etc, etc. However, how could I, a simple PC user, grasp the whole (clean and beatiful) concept of "i" versus "Power" product lines? White/vivid colours vs grey/aluminium... It's fairly EASY to understand, but unless I'm really looking forward to learn all about a brand's entire product lines, I won't learn it all by myself.

Well this is the way I see it, you go to the apple site, you see laptops, you see price range, you pick by that, if the specks you see aren't what you want, you pick the other set of laptops.

Same goes with the descktops.


You could answer something like "oohh... we don't want those [insert unpleasant word here] coming to the Mac platform"...


Or I could answer that you have to click on fewer links to get to a computer on the apple site, and that you you have to go through fewer pages to check out on the mac site. I will demonstrate.

Apple site, store, imac, click on 17 inch 1.8 ghz imac, add ram bigger harddrive applecare, update subtotal, continue, buy office, continue, checkout

this is a total of 6 webpages,

now i will go through the steps of buying a computer on dells site.

dell site, home solutions, desktops, demension 8400, customize it, buy windows kp pro 4 year warrenty, continue, (then i see options i have already picked, but even more options) buy another warrenty buy more ram bigger hardrive office speakers firewire, continue, buy another warrenty, continue, buy pinnacle (video editing) spyware softwear more spyware softwear, add to cart now i'm done

this is a total of 9


but what you can't see is that, each page had an overwhelming amount of information on it on the dell site and it took me (someone who knew what they wanted) 10-15 minutes on the dell site.

No imagine if you don't know much about computers, you could spend 3 hours researching every little accessory to see if you needed it.

The people on this site mostley know what all of these random accessories are, but the average joe doesn't