FOCUS: RESTAURANT SUPPLIES – economy paper and restaurant supply

Reviewed March 15, 10:30 a.m., Explorer 4.5 (www.economysupply.com)

i don’t understand the significance of the company’s logo, a strange-looking man with a grimace, but otherwise the home page of Economy is crisp and clean, with a shaded box of navigational links on the left. In fact, the overall design of the Website is excellent. You can’t really get lost, because every page includes directions and links to other parts of the site. (Every page also includes that strange grimacing logo man at the top.)

The Cybercritic also appreciates that the customer service page addresses such common inquiries as how the company calculates shipping fees and how to return merchandise. While many sites provide this sort of information, often you can’t access all of it until you place an order. Economy arms the browser with its policies first.

This site is so user-friendly that it is disheartening to have to report on the areas where it not only falls short, but also completely misses the mark. For one, there is no attempt to convert browsers into buyers with e-mail notification of new products and sales, since the site doesn’t even try to collect data from nonbuyers. And while the tag line promises to “help you `economize,'” does that mean Economy had to skimp on photos of its Internet specials?

Economy is so good at easing you through its site that you want it to inject some value-added features (for instance, links to industry groups) and more graphics to create a truly satisfying experience. For while image isn’t everything, in the competitive world of e-commerce, it counts for an awful lot.

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