4 Things We Like About Speedo’s Website

Posted on November 20, 2014

speedo

Brands around the world are tasked with designing a website that both attracts customers and builds trust. Speedo, the world’s leading swimming brand, sets a good example for website efficiency, though its website (speedousa.com) is not without its shortcomings. The most effective website meets four major criteria which are fulfilled almost perfectly by Speedo:

  1. First Impressions and Appeal

  2. Navigation

  3. Content

  4. User Engagement

Getting in

First impressions can make or break website efficiency, as it is the determining factor in whether or not a visitor chooses to stay. The homepage of Speedousa.com is immediately inviting, using an easy-on-the-eyes color scheme of red and black text against a white background. Importantly, trust is immediately built and attractors are displayed:

  • In a unique selling point, the homepage prominently displays a link to information on a 90 Day Return Policy, ensuring customers: “we take your satisfaction seriously.”

  • Interaction is then made easy through the clickability of all items on the homepage, from the continuously scrolling latest offers in the site’s large, central slider to the images below which link to high demand products.

  • The visitor is given from this ease of interaction a feeling of wanting more, which the homepage makes available through the option of email updates and the providing of a support number in bold at the bottom of the page, encouraging personal contact.

  • The only flaw, perhaps, is the absence of a mission statement or some word from management. Credentials are not explicitly stated on the homepage either. Speedo, while a well-known brand, could still potentially be foreign to some demographics, and a bolder and more immediate statement of purpose and affirmation of authority could benefit the site (the “About Us” link with all of this information is hidden down at the bottom of the page in small text).

Getting around

Navigation can be a difficulty for many website visitors, and no web designer should presume every user knows the typical ins-and-outs of web surfing. But Speedo makes it easy.

  • Direct links to major categories (women, men, kids, accessories) are listed across the top of the homepage, including an especially attractive link to products on sale as well as external links to the separate “Explore” section of the website (explore.speedousa.com) which offers profiles of prolific swimmers, the latest news in the swim world, and information on the technologies behind the most elite swimwear.

  • But returning to the shopping portion of the site can easily be done, as the links across the top of the screen never disappear even as pages are left and the user’s navigation history is tracked directly below, so returning to a previous page or back to home is doable in one click.

  • An internal search engine is providing on every page and there are text links on all images advertising products or encouraging visitors to lean more. A minor issue would be the choice of white for the text, which tends to blend in with the image in the background, which may amount to difficulty in discerning where the link leads.

What you get

Speedo’s content is top-notch for drawing in the competitive swimmer, both in its main shopping section and its “Explore” section. The immediate graphics consistently showcase the action of competition in Speedo brand racing suits. And therein lies the site’s flaw of unbalance. While Speedo, in its “About Us” section, acknowledges its production of recreational swimwear and aquatic fitness equipment, the competition gear overshadows the company’s other offerings, alienating the other target demographics. Despite this, Speedo’s web content excels in:

  1. Providing credentials: every profile of a state-of-the-art racing suit is legitimized by certification by FINA (The International Swimming Federation).

  2. The products are further backed up by customer reviews and even charts detailing the pros and cons of each product (talk about honesty).

Still, a few things are missing. For instance, there should be:

  1. Links to international sites (they exist, but we don’t have access to them)

  2. Accomdations for visitors with disabilities (such as poor eyesight, going back to the choice of white text for image links).

Again, this all could potentially alienate certain demographics Speedo is trying to hit, especially older customers and/or non-competitive swimmers.

Getting acquainted

Above all, website efficiency is based on personal knowledge of users, owing to the fact that a visitor will be more willing to come back if a website is specially tailored to their activities and interests. Speedo connects with its website’s users in two ways:

  1. The website offers an affiliate program, offering site visitors who own websites the chance to become affiliates of the company and build an online Speedo USA store.

  2. And for the casual shopper, the website also keeps track of which products the user selects, keeping each product in his shopping cart for thirty days until action is taken. The website also makes suggestions for further purchases based on a user’s shopping history.

Such interface and such attention to trust-building and customer satisfaction makes the Speedo brand a leading example in website efficiency, in spite of minor hiccups in demographic reaching.

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