I recently tried out the @verynetwork web store to get a feel for what retailers are up to these days. This store is run by the same company that redeployed Woollies as a digital pure-play but doesn’t have the brand equity that Woolworths does. Incidentally, the fact they’ve launched a party-specific url suggests they’ve done a lot to understand the needs of the average Woollies customer.
One thing I find intriguing about very.co.uk is they sell high-street fashion and electricals from the same interface. Nothing wrong with this, just that traditionally, we all felt the electricals customer expected a certain level of specialisation and expertise from her vendor.
Anyways, I just wanted to mention that my test went well and my new jumper arrived swiftly and was entirely as described including the sizing which is often a problem for me.
On the down side, as a test to see how Very went about selling tellies, I did a search from the home page (search bar in an unusual position, I’d be curious to see their test data on that) for a 32 inch Sonia Bravia and got the error message above.
My guess is that the client-side validation script was written by a PHP jockey (because PHP is vulnerable to POSTed code, often included in double-quotes). By trapping the double quote, the browser robbed the ecommerce system of an opportunity to parse my query and sell me a TV.
I’d much prefer the browser to send the garbage to the server and let the server do the heavy lifting, that way I increase the chance of returning an engaging search result.
Come on Very, you’ve got it mostly right, why not let your customer search for a 48” chest or a 50” television or a 19” monitor?