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I've been taking a look at the Lego.com website from a user experience perspective.
The site was redesigned last year by e2x, and contains some excellent features which other sites could learn from, especially on its product pages.
The homepage looks great with the moving, ever-changing Flash animation. It's a fun way to demonstrate products, and fits perfectly with the brand. However, being Flash, it won't work on mobiles and iPads.
The homepage of the site isn't the e-commerce homepage, so you need to go to 'shop'. Also, if you click on a featured product from the homepage, it takes you to a page with information about the product, but not the product page, which would have been more useful.
Once in the shop section, the navigation works well. The mega drop-downs provide plenty of choice for users to find their own paths to product pages, such as searching by age suitability, a very useful feature for buying gifts.
The filtered navigation options are excellent too, allowing shoppers to narrow their product searches effectively:
The product pages on this site are excellent, with some great features that showcase the products effectively.
The product images are excellent, with zoom views, lightboxes with large images, as well as a 360 rotating view. This means that customers can find all the visual information they need.
Lego also uses product videos, with members of staff showing the products in motion, and during assembly. This is a great way to showcase the products, and it elegantly answers many of the questions that customers will have about the products.
These are proven to work too. For example, Simply Group experienced a 25% rise in conversion rates for pages which contained product videos. 360 views also raised conversions by 20%.
Lego also makes full use of UGC. Customers are invited to submit their own photos, while there are plenty of consumer reviews on product pages.
The review scores are summarised well, and key points like level of difficulty and the age of the reviewer are highlighted, meaning customers can extract greater value from reviews.
There are a couple of minuses on these product pages though. Delivery charges aren't that easy to find, while there is no information on returns policies until you reach the shopping basket page.
Lego has a guest checkout option, thus removing one potential barrier to purchase:
The checkout is enclosed, thus removing any distractions for potential customers.
Also, forms are well designed, and Lego doesn't ask for too many details. However, the postcode validation is too strict, producing an error message when I leave a space in my postcode:
Also, the error message doesn't educate the customer, it just tells you that the code isn't valid. Instead, if it is going to be strict, the message should tell me to enter the postcode without any spaces. These kinds of things annoy customers and can spoil an otherwise smooth checkout process.
In a great example from Belron's Craig Sullivan, he found that customers entering zeros instead of the letter 'O' was causing 2.5% of customers to abandon the checkout. A simple change to the forms to anticipate such user errors solved the problem. Little things like this can make a big difference.
The new Lego site is generally excellent, and the product pages are a great example of best practice. While there are a number of areas for improvement, such as clearer delivery charges and better error messaging, the site works well and suits the brand.