JAFA-centred design?

I have been researching garden centre websites to see what they do well, badly and the kinds of approaches that are taken. The first one I checked didn’t have its opening hours anywhere so I though I’d check out a bigger chain expecting that they would get it right.

Here’s their Store Locator page – a classic, especially if you live south of the Bombays or north of the Brynderwyns. An example perhaps not so much of customer-centred design but JAFA-centred design?

Store Directory - all Auckland stores listed first then all the rest

Why are Rotorua and Taupo in grey rather than black? No apparent reason. And, at Palmers L comes before K in the alphabet.

Let’s say you were looking to see if there is a Palmers in Wellington – if you zoom down the left hand side of the list no Wellington there so you might persist and zoom down the right hand side and bingo you see Wellington – but it’s Plimmerton, too far out from central Wellington so might easily conclude no Palmers in Wellington Central. Astute readers will have seen “Miramar” and know that’s in Wellington – except that when someone’s quickly scanning for Wellington they might easily miss Miramar and if they’re not familiar with Wellington (newly moved there) they may not know Miramar is in Wellington. Yes, these are picky little details but they make the difference between really serving the customer and not.

What’s the point? If you have a business that requires people to go to a physical location then it’s critical that your website unerringly gets them there – or lose them to the competition.

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