Our newest Tea of the Week: Cran-Strawberry Young Hyson
Our Tea of the Week for the week of November 25, 2013
Thinking about Thanksgiving this week and cranberry sauce and decided to make this delicious blend of sweet young hyson green tea with dried cranberries, freeze-dried strawberries and organic flavors. See everything we currently have in stock at http://www.zoomdweebies.com/Available-NOW_c_32.html
Hey, Frank, just visited the site and it looks GREAT! :)
Agreed, the site is looking good! Much more professional! (Not that I had an issue with it before, but I think it’s likely to appeal to more customers now!) Love the look/layout of the recent blends in particular!
I’m not sure if you’re open to comments or not, but I just wanted to mention that on the home page, where the first banner says ‘award winning teas’, I’m finding the font size to be a bit difficult on the eyes – perhaps it could be a bit smaller? The text to the right is great, but it wouldn’t have to be that small.
Thanks. I am definitely open to comments, and particularly happy to receive comments regarding aspects of the design (like individual elements of the slide images I created) which I can actually do something about. LOL. Not all of it is within my realm of fixability. I’ll have to see if I can adjust that slide at some point. Now if I could just make my “In Stock” page look less like I’m trying to herd feral cats into a chorus line…
I am glad to see that you are open to comments regarding the new site. When I first looked at the new site, I had thought of a few things I wanted to say (I can’t help it – I’m a web developer, so I just notice things…), but was wondering if it was my place to mention them or not. It seems there are many 52teas fans here on Steepster (including me), and we all want your site to be the best it can be, so I’m putting in my 2 cents, if it will help.
First of all congratulations on the new site. It is well done and looks very nice! (So don’t get the wrong impression by the following list of comments, I really do think the site looks amazing! )
Now the comments :)
When designing a web page, one of the first things we ask is what are your strengths and what message do you want to pass to those that come upon your site. In my opinion, you are missing some of that. You make tea. Wonderful, unique, surprising flavors of tea. That is your strength and what you want people to know. So while you have the rotating banner that says “New creation every week”, it is not enough to quickly educate someone that is not familiar with you, your teas and your system. Or to how utterly delicious the teas are.
My suggestions (and you can completely ignore me if you like, I’m just giving my professional – but still only my – opinion):
1) The rotating banner (the 3 images front center of the page):
a) The whole thing is a big large, I think. I’d make it a little smaller
b) As Krystaleyn mentioned the font size on the “Award Winning Teas” banner is way too big. It feels like you are yelling at me
c) The secure payments banner is important, but – no offence – a little out of place on a home page, especially not front center of a homepage. It is important information, of course, but better suited to it’s own, separate, page or on the payment page. I’d like to know what it is you are offering me to buy before I am given information about payment methods. In place of the payment banner, I’d put something that better showcases your various teas. Maybe small images with some of the funny comments you’ve received on them (I think I saw something like that on the “MySweetHoneybush” site?), or just images of various flavors…
2) The “Recent Blends” section is gorgeous! I love the big images, the links on mouse over. That is exactly the showcase I mean. I think the “About / Email Newsletter / Contact” section with it’s various links, should be moved to after “Recent Blends” section. For the same reason I mentioned above. The teas are the main content. They are your strength. Give them center stage.
3) The In Stock page is a little messy. The images seem to not be the same size (or maybe it seems that way because some are portrait and some landscape). If you can make them the same size it’s better. If not, then they need to at least be aligned at the top with the labels below the images also aligned at the top. So the the top of the images are one the same line, and the top of the labels are one the same line. It will make it look less messy. Also, maybe a bit more space between the rows of products and maybe also a thin dividing line between the rows? More space between the different sections of stock? Just throwing out some ideas…
4) The product page and the Permanent Collection pages are off center, while all the rest of the pages are centered. Looks a bit odd.
5) And lastly, there is a blank space above the menu. The logo is small and there is blank space. How about a bigger logo and less blank space?
I hope I have not overstepped my bounds here, I am only trying to help.
If you have any questions, or need any help, let me know. Honestly. It’s what I do for a living, so if I can help, I’d be happy to.
Thank you for the thorough critique and suggestions. I am in the process of hiring someone from one of the barter networks I’m involved with who can help me get it up to snuff. Several of your comments are on things I already intended to fix. Thanks again.
I just had to add my two cents here as well. ssajami has some really great advice! I agree with everything he/she said. I didn’t even realize that the images on the In Stock page are different sizes and not aligned, but now that ssajami pointed it out, that is definitely contributing to why it looks so messy.
I also really agree with ssajami about the rotating banner on the main page. Showcase your teas! Showcase your talents! I’d cut the payment options thing entirely and just make it a small footnote on the bottom of the page. I’d also put the Third Place Award thing as the 2nd or 3rd photo, not the first. If I’m viewing your website for the first time, I want to know what you offer, not that you’ve won an award for it.
Don’t misunderstand me. It’s great that you’ve won that award! But that shouldn’t be the first thing I see (which from a buyer standpoint makes me think that’s the most important thing). The fact that you’ve won an award might be the final factor that makes me go ahead and purchase a tea. But that means I should already understand your product and be inclined to purchase it. “Wow, a new tea every week! Wow, really interesting unique blends I can’t get anywhere else! Wow, only $9 AND free shipping! And he’s won an award?! Okay, I’m definitely going to try this!” Be proud, but also make sure the product takes center stage, not the award.
Maybe it would also help the In Stock page not look so cluttered if you were to change the way they’re grouped? I mean, it’s fine to keep them in the order they were released. But maybe that could be one page option (like Recent Blends) and then the In Stock page could have the teas grouped by base type. Then I could quickly see how many white tea blends you have vs. black tea blends, without having to read every single image.
From a buyer standpoint, I think that’d be really helpful. I visit your site every week, so it’s usually not too hard for me to navigate it. But if I were visiting it for the first time, I’d definitely prefer to have them grouped by tea type. That also seems to be a common trend with most tea sites.
Finally, and this is just a personal pet peeve of mine, is there a better way to keep the In Stock page updated so that it doesn’t show out of stock teas? It’s kind of annoying to see the same teas listed on the In Stock page with the “out of stock” banner next to them week after week. I would understand a 24-hour delay thing, but having the same tea listed out of stock on the In Stock page for several weeks? That’s pushing it.
Okay, that’s all I have to say. Overall, I think you’re definitely headed in the right direction, and I really like the new site! Keep up the great work!! Also, I absolutely love your new black tea base. It really complements your flavorings. Whatever you’ve done to it, it’s like magic in a cup!!
HAHAHAHAHA! I wants me some of that. :D
This one sounds like a real winner, Frank. ;P
Mmmm….even better than the Tuna Melt!!! ;)
Oh dear….I actually believed it was real :)
Luckily I ran across the Tuna Melt tea the other day, so I’m not fooled! But I enjoyed it nevertheless :D
This was truly a suggestion from a customer, who happens to HATE April Fool’s Day. She’s now vowing to never do business with us again now. She’s a bit furious. But I told her we could use this as a test market to see if there would actually be some interest in such a blend. I’m thinking if we have enough people that would be genuinely interested in such a blend, we could try to make it for real. (Apparently Torani has already come up with a similarly flavored coffee syrup).
Eesh. It’s not like April Fool’s Jokes don’t become actual things. Like AdBlock today has replaced all ads with cats, and people really want that feature to stick around. The guy who created it is going to make a CatBlock version for people who donate. So why not chicken and waffle tea?
Seems far like a far better flavor for tea than as a syrup. I would so definitely get some if you made it.
@LiberTeas – yeah, I’m pretty sure I know who the person in question is as well. ;)
I don’t think it was mean. I thought it was funny. I still do. Some people have no sense of humor. shrug
PS: Just an FYI: I’m not genuinely interested in a chicken and waffle tea. Now… a tomato and waffle tea might be good. (cackle)
LOL! I was totally thinking of her when I saw this. That reaction with the Rickroll a few years ago, that was EPIC!
To me, the funniest part of the joke was the realization that I believed it because it isn’t actually inconceivable that 52teas would make such a tea. :)
@ssajami: that’s true. When I first saw the post of this week’s tea had been updated I thought “oh… Frank’s on the ball this week” and I was pleased for him, especially since this is a really busy time of year for him (tax time). Then when I really read the description I knew it had to be one of his April Fool’s jokes.
And yes, you’re right … it isn’t entirely inconceivable that he’d make that tea. I don’t know that I’d be all excited to try it … but, if anyone could pull it off, it’d be Frank.
I definitely thought that this one was more likely than Tuna Melt tea! I mean, he’s done multiple breakfast teas before (toast, pancakes), so waffles isn’t exactly a stretch, and perhaps he chose chicken as the accompanying meat instead of bacon? (Actually, if he had put up a bacon & waffles tea, I probably would have fallen for it…)
Ok you don’t have to tell me who but is it someone that used to cause a bit of a fury on Steepster and is no longer here? I would check Facebook myself but I don’t have an account. Thanks, you know how curiousity can be. :)
@Angrboda Thanks, I figured. So I guess not much has changed. ;)
Apart from the fact that she doesn’t seem interested in doing it here anymore, nope I guess not. ;)
I feel like there are certain kinds of people in the world who just aren’t happy unless their lives are full of drama.
For me, it’s the peace I enjoy more than the chaos. I will raise my cup to that. All are welcome to join. :)
There seriously are. I have a friend who is a completely great person to be around, but then I see her posts online on tumblr or Twitter and she seems to live to complain and in turn, attract drama. I don’t get it. I’ll be joining Rachel!
“Clink” Amanda :) I do hope you are sipping something delicious :)