THE GLOBAL GAMES
The Global Games The Teams Penguins Online Value Proposition Arsenal Online Value Proposition McLaren Online Value Proposition Yankees Online Value Proposition Bulls Online Value Proposition Online Value Proposition Conclusions
1 2 3 4 5-8 9 10 11
Penguins Dynamic Design and Personalisation Arsenal Dynamic Design and Personalisation McLaren Dynamic Design and Personalisation Yankees Dynamic Design and Personalisation Bulls Dynamic Design and Personalisation Dynamic Design and Personalisation Conclusions
12 13 14 15 16 17
Penguins Aesthetics Arsenal Aesthetics McLaren Aesthetics Yankees Aesthetics Bulls Aesthetics Aesthetics Conclusions
18 19 20-21 22 23 24
Penguins Page Design Arsenal Page Design McLaren Page Design Yankees Page Design Bulls Page Design Page Design Conclusions
25-26 27-28 29 30 31 32
Penguins Navigation and Structure Arsenal Navigation and Structure McLaren Navigation and Structure Yankees Navigation and Structure Bulls Navigation and Structure Navigation and Structure Conclusions
33-34 35 36 37 38 39
Penguins Interaction Arsenal Interaction McLaren Interaction Yankees Interaction Bulls Interaction Interaction Conclusions
40-41 42-43 44-45 46 47 48
Penguins Copywriting Arsenal Copywriting McLaren Copywriting Yankees Copywriting Bulls Copywriting Copywriting Conclusions
49 50 51 52 53 54
Conclusions and Recommendations
THE GLOBAL GAMES
Sport is a global activity phenomenon with millions of amateurs and professionals participating in a wide variety of activities, world renowned as sport. Many are in it for the passion, others play for fun and exercise. In this issue the market chosen for analysis is leading sports teams’ websites. The reason behind selection of the global sporting industry is because here at Supernova Sport we are all avid fans of sport and the competition it brings, between clubs and players alike. We have a collective experience in and admiration of numerous different sports enabling us to chose and analyse teams from sports that aren’t necessarily prominent here in the UK. The five sporting organisations selected are The Pittsburgh Penguins of the National Hockey League (NHL), Arsenal FC of the Premierleague, McLaren Mercedes of F1, The New York Yankees of the Major League Baseball (MLB) and The Chicago Bulls of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Each aspect of these teams’ official websites will be analysed to the full using primary research to test the usability of each. This issue will close with a full conclusion and recommendations we feel would enable the websites to succeed further.
THE TEAMS The Pittsburgh Penguins are a professional ice hockey team located in Pittsburgh, PA, America. They play in the NHL that spreads across Canada and the USA. The franchise was established in 1967 and has one three Stanley Cup Championships in this time. The current captain has been declared as the best player in the world – this generates a mass media following of the club and its activities. The website has been functional for nearly 15 years, introducing multimedia and full fan interaction in the early 2000’s.
Arsenal FC were established in 1886, officially moving to North London in 1913. It is the third most successful club in the English league, that has been dubbed as the best league in the world. The club website is a valuable tool, this can be operated in different languages – very crucial as the Club currently amasses millions of fans from all 7 continents.
The McLaren F1 team is a British racing team based in Woking, GB. It was first established in 1963 and won its Grand Prix race in 1968, in Belgium. It has occupied many different drivers from a number of nationalities, resulting in many Championship successes. The official website it not like many others, as it operates its site with a ongoing scroll layout as opposed to the norm with different pages activated by tab clicking.
The New Yankees are the most famous professional baseball team in the world. The franchise moved to the Bronx borough of NY in 1903 and officially became the Yankees in 1913. It has become a global brand expanding into mainstream clothing and accessories as well as its official club merchandise clothing. The website functions as part of the MLB network, operating with a network structure but with personal Yankee content.
The Chicago Bulls of the NBA are a professional basketball team founded in 1966. Their history features one of the greatest dynasties in sports history during the 1990s, winning six championships in eight years with two three-peats, all lead by the best player to ever play the game. Michael Jordan, a global ambassador for the sport through his basketball achievement and Air Jordan brand. The Bulls’ website is also ran as part of a network, being a part of the NBA network of teams.
Online Value Proposition Similar to other sporting clubs analysed in this magazine, the Pittsburgh Penguins don’t necessarily have a distinct online value proposition . This is because sport is based upon support, which in affect means that fans of the Penguins will only go to the Penguins’ website as opposed to any other club site. However, fans will add this site to their favourites or as a bookmark for the main reason that they are a fan of the Penguins – so they will have multiple site visits.
In competition and desire to be unique and ahead of unofficial Penguins websites, player sites and fan-run unofficial sites, it is very good that this site offers freebies. Free items such as wallpaper downloads and other multimedia are available to download by fans any where in the world.
The customers of this shop are usually users of the penguins website. Therefore, the web team need to make sure they hook customers in, in order for them to change from the club site to the club shop. The official shop has many hundred products available for purchase. Explained below are the offers that the site exploits to edge out other unofficial product sites using a unique online value proposition.
This only applies to the online shop and its products, rather than the website as a whole.
Above is the homepage of the official Penguins shop. It sells numerous products, all official merchandise. Research shows that 90% of people felt that the links to the online club shop are highlighted well, with 45% of this saying it is done very well. Subsequently, 95% of people asked, said that they could access the shop feature, through the various links. The online value proposition here is evident as sales promotion only available from official stores are offered. Deals on player personalisation – buying a jersey with a certain players name, get a free t-shirt bargains occur regularly.
Online Value Proposition ‘The online value proposition is your customer value proposition, your USP online. It’s important to clearly communicate what online experiences and content your brand can offer for each site, app and social presence.’ (smartinsights.com)
The Arsenal website is quite unique as it does not really need to operate with a substantial OVP. This is, similar to some of the other sports teams analysed in this magazine issue, due to the fact that people visiting the site are doing so to gain further insight to the team they support. Therefore would not be swayed to any other teams’ website due to lack of OVP because they are a fan of Arsenal football club.
The official club shop is linked to the site OVP as it attracts all fans from the global Arsenal network as it sells only official merchandise. The wise range of products cannot be matched anywhere else online and membership features are utilised in this feature. The primary research usability survey results show that 50% felt that the links to the online shop were highlighted well with the other 50% saying it was highlighted very well. And all users said that they could access this feature easily.
In order to remain ahead of competitor sites such as unofficial websites and fan run sites, AFC have unique features only available direct from arsenal.com. Arsenal bet, Arsenal player, virtual tours and free downloadable content are some key highlights of this.
Online Value Proposition The McLaren F1 official website does not generally have an online value proposition as fans would generally not go to competing teams websites in the sporting world. However competition from unofficial websites could lead to a decline in web traffic through their website. One of the main ways McLaren combat unofficial competition is by having links to official merchandise and social media, which provides the user with live information about the racing team, and a chance to purchase official merchandise that they could not get from unofficial sites and forums.
Another way McLaren combat online competition is through live race planner, which allows users to follow the team through the season using the constantly updated season planner near the top of the page.
Online Value Proposition The shop here link on the McLaren website takes you to the online shop where various different products are available, this provides an unique proposition for the official website, as competing fan made sites would not be able to sell official merchandise.
Various products are available for purchase through the shop, and there are more links to other areas of interest for the user, such as the cartoon series for children and movies about the racing team. This provides the user with a link to the team, which is only available through the official merchandise section of the website.
Online Value Proposition
One key unique feature the McLaren Official website has it the use of an interactive race interface for users, this allows the fans to see how the practice, qualifying and the race is going for the team, and gives up to date information on the performance of the cars and the team, set within a modern design, this gives the website uniqueness and a coolness over unofficial websites and forums, this layout also gives fans the opportunity to change the language depending on where the race is taking place.
This would be attractive to fans of McLaren as it makes them feel part of the team. This also provides McLaren with a new way of providing fans with up to date information about the teams progress.
Online Value Proposition
The MacLaren website also provides users with content suitable for children, the main content is an animated series called Tooned, which is a children's animated show that allows younger fans to keep up the teams progress, and also gain new information about the team, in a fun and interesting way. The series also features the teams drivers, Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, which shows attention to detail, and provides the younger user with a direct link to the drivers they support.
By providing a way for a variety of supporters to consume very detailed and expansive media, McLaren's Online value proposition makes the website unique on many different levels.
Online Value Proposition The online value proposition (OVP) is the reason behind the website attracting its visitors. It is what the website has to offer and why its audiences are attracted to the website on a constant basis. It is worth noting that the main specifications for the audience to visit the Yankees websites are that they are fans of the New York Yankees and take an interest in baseball. The website is run under Mlb.com. Mlb.com links to different websites for different teams and each team website has relatively the same template and layout. Therefore for someone to specifically choose to visit and bookmark the Yankees website they are most likely to be a supporter of the team.
The website also sales products. You are able to get discounted clothes if you buy directly from the websites store. It also allows from the booking of season tickets so that you can go to the stadium. However in order to purchase either the clothes or a ticket you need to become a registered member.
Team news is a reason for visitors of the website. Whether they are a supporter or not, people may choose to visit the New York Yankees in order to find about the teams on goings inside and outside of baseball. The website offers any things for people to find out about such as official releases, roster, fixtures, player and team statistics etc.
The website is an official website run by major league baseball. Therefore people may choose to come to the website because it is an official website and therefore its information is more reliable than other sites such as sites run by fans.
Online Value Proposition An online value proposition is closely tied to your brand positioning which answers questions like: who we are, what we offer, which markets do we serve, what makes us different? (Smart Insights, 2012). Similar to the other basketball teams associated with the NBA the Chicago Bulls official website displays a large header at the top that welcomes and informs visitors that this is the official bulls site. The site’s colour scheme revolves around the teams traditional (home) colours red, white and black. Underneath the Chicago Bulls header there are several links that allows visitors to have more of an insight in the clubs history, season schedule and upcoming fixtures, game night action, bulls TV, latest news and a link to buy tickets.
The official site unlike unofficial bulls fan sites provides exclusive and reliable information to visitors seeking updates and current news about the clubs. Providing team news, fixtures and players & team statistics. One thing that sets and separates the Chicago bulls from other basketball teams and their website is the overwhelming history behind the club. The website has a section filled with the Chicago Stadium history, a celebration of the 20th anniversary of first NBA championship title and a hall of fame section dedicated to Chicago Bull’s legends such as Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman and Michael Jordan recapturing great historic moments. Chicago Bulls aren’t just a basketball team especially in the eyes of their supporters and the site makes sure they demonstrate this by adding off the court content such as charity work and any improvement made towards bettering consumers match day experience. Limited edition products are also sold on the website offering free giveaways such as wallpapers of the Chicago Bulls logo and star players. The website not only offers visitors the opportunity to buy tickets to go see the team play but also the opportunity to be connected with the club via social networking sites such as Facebook twitter and instagram & directly via email or mobile phone alerts. Consumers can also Buy personalised merchandise only sold on the official site (New arrivals, Men’s, Women’s and Kid’s apparel, Memorabilia, Jersey and NBA Store/Redeem gift cards)
ON THE GO CONCLUSION Online Value Proposition As an official website the Penguins make themselves unique by having fan features that cannot be accessed anywhere else, this includes unofficial site and fan run sites. These feature include free wallpapers and free live match commentary. This is a good approach as fans are able to interact for free via the online membership. Player bios and match photos are also available and these official versions are not posted anywhere else; print nor digital. OVP is in affect an online USP that any business has in order to be unique and attract custom. In relation to the club shop, fans has access to best and most value for money promotion offers on official merchandise. Jerseys are printed, foam fingers are sold and vintage memorabilia is all available online at the club store. Having unique sales promotions entices fans to buy their Penguins gear from the official store only as this is where they will receive the best financial satisfaction. In order to attract fans to the store there are promotional offer ads placed strategically around the main website pages. This is good marketing as users browsing the site for interactive features, game highlights are new information, will see the banner ads that contain direct sales promotions. Upon click these links take the user straight to the store where they are able to browse everything there is on offer. Jersey personalisation is also available, and this too has an unique element as the print letters and numbers are identical to the ones used on the players official jerseys. This means that fans can only get the actual Penguins shirt text font from this store.
The Arsenal FC website is similar as it has Arsenal themed features available to fans that enable it to be completely different to all other Arsenal websites anywhere in the world. The web team keep the site unique by updating the Arsenal Player regularly, creating new downloadable content such as screen savers and photos, all free to all fans. This is a good approach as the club want to welcome fans and freebies are a good way to do this. Value like this cannot be matched from any other unofficial sites as creators there would not have the right to offer such features that are solely endorsed to the official Arsenal website. Arsenalâ€™s site also has a sub site that is the online shop that sells many thousand products all Arsenal themed. Fans are able to gain insight into everything available on the shop homepage and have access to the best sales promotion offers on brand new official Arsenal gear. Having links to the shop is very good as fans may be reminded of something this wish to buy through ads displayed around each page of the main site. This technique is common because the AIDA process can begin through banner ads and end through purchasing goods from the online shop. The uniqueness of the McLaren website enables McLaren to reach its target audience, with the use of unique features and a different website design compared to the other sporting websites, which can be seen with the scroll down feature and the fact almost all media is on one page This enables McLaren to appeal to the target audience on a different level compared to the other sporting websites.
Like most sport orientated websites, the Yankees websites does not offer a clear online value proposition but through its online presence it accomplishes promotion of the team in a business concept. This is because It can generate revenue through memberships, ticket and product sales. The website also stands as a official representative of the team online for fans to visit.
In addition to having ease-of-use, regular updates through social media outlets & Bullstv. Bulls.com also has a strong and clear online value propositions. Being precise and effective with the content displayed and how they present merchandise sold on the site. The site also offers a variety of free & paid downloads, which helps distinguish it from competition.
Dynamic Design and Personalisation Similar to all other ice hockey sites on the NHL network, Pittsburgh Penguins offer an official membership. The package offered is actually a network registration that links users to the specific club membership. This service keeps fans up to date with club news, player news, industry news, downloadable media and online sales promotions.
From the primary research data gathered, question 3 results show that 45% of users say that the register/sign in tool on the homepage was good and a further 35% described it as very good.
Language selection – crucial in order to establish a global network of penguins fans.
Interested fans may look to an unofficial Penguins site for membership if there was not a language choice selection as they would not be able to understand the registration form.
Including a word verification test shows that it is an official website serious about fraud, protection, hacking and alike as these tests prove the user is human and not a worm or virus hacking robot.
It has been designed to operate with a ‘3 step’ process which is very userfriendly as this sort of process is easy to go back and edit or delete bits of data with out losing information on the current step.
Dynamic Design and Personalisation Arsenal.com gives users and fans anywhere in the world the opportunity to register to the site. This registration feature is free to all and enables members to exploit added value from the website. This includes an online shopping account and access to all Arsenal Player live match commentaries.
All new users filling in this form must already be Arsenal Members as they are required to enter their membership number.
Usersâ€™ personal data is collection through this online registration form. This must be filled in to complete the website membership.
The dynamic content will change to suit each individual user.
The user also has the option to receive numerous information and offers from both club and sponsor features.
The results from the usability survey show that 65% of users asked described the registration/sign in tool as good. This is supported by a further 25% describing the same tool as very good. This shows that the registration form utilised by the website team is very user friendly. This is emphasised by the fact that there is little jargon used, all information is written in clear, understandable language. And even more importantly, the new fan or user registering for this online membership can choose whether they wish to receive any news, updates and further information by email.
Dynamic Design and Personalisation McLaren's website does not promote registry or signing up, however the promote following the team through their various social media outlets, such as Twitter and Facebook. This means that McLaren provide everything on the website for free, however the promotion of the clothing line is current on all pages of the website, and via a twitter account specially for the clothing line.
McLaren explains in detail how you can stay connected to the team through the different social media, and also provides the links to their personalised pages through clicking on the logo of the desired company. Below are examples of the different social medias McLaren use.
Dynamic Design and Personalisation You are able to register to the site and have information personalised directly for you. This means that the website will store your customer preferences on a database and will recognise you when you sign in. This allows you to set your email subscriptions to whatever news you wish to receive. The login name that has been used will also be viewable and link to your profile to show that you have logged in. The survey revealed that website personalisation makes it easier for users to receive information and all users would like the choice to register to a website.
As well as being able to register to the site using a registration form to receive email newsletters. The Yankees shop also uses collaborative filtering to make predictions on what you may like to purchase based on items you viewed in the past. Theses recommendations become available to you at the bottom on the page once you view an item.
Dynamic Design and Personalisation
The Bulls site has a section called BullsConnect where Chicago Bulls supporters-visitors can build a personal profile to connect with other fans globally, create or join groups, create or join discussion in the Fan Forum section, create a blog, upload photos and videos and invite friends or start new friendships. BullsConnect is free for all bulls fans and an effective way for bulls fan to stay connected socially. By also registering with BullsConnect consumers can chose what type of communications they would want from the site. For example consumers could to choose to receive mobile alerts rather than weekly emails.
An organisation recognising customersâ€™ preferences and remembering registered users names is a vital step towards building long-term relationships, loyalty and trust in the brand. That alone is one of the main reasons several organisations including Bulls.com use this method of marketing. The personalisation options bulls.com offers helps the organisation understand the wants and needs of every visitor who visits the site. By having this type of data bulls.com can now alter how registered users view the site. This also enables them to send direct email of promotions, news feed and selected topics users have chosen to receive regularly.
ON THE GO CONCLUSION Dynamic Design and Personalisation The Pittsburgh Penguins website is part of the NHL network that includes all thirty NHL team sites. Therefore to online membership feature is for the network rather than the Penguins site directly. There is a register/sign in tool at the home of the Penguinsâ€™ site homepage that enables the user to access their account. The membership is active for the whole network but the user gets specific Penguins member value if they register through the Penguins site. This is the case for all the other NHL sites too. The registration form on this site features a three step process that the user can see whilst filling it in digitally. This is good because the fans entering their details can see what stage they are at easily and can go back or forward with one simple click. Clear signs highlight good usability features and this is supported by the survey research results that showed that 80% of tested users gave positive feedback on this tool.
Arsenal FC also have an online membership feature that has been perceived as a success as 90% of users from the usability survey gave affirmative feedback rating it highly. One potential downside of the online membership is that any interested user wanting to sign up actually has to be an official Arsenal member as they are required to enter their full member number upon registration to the online membership. This could potentially dismiss some fansâ€™ interest, especially abroad, as these foreign fans will not actually reap the benefits of an official Arsenal membership as the perks are things like ticket availability and membership packs but in order to become an online member they must pay and become an official member. This is weak as an online membership is digital and can be accessed from anywhere in the world but in order to complete this one has to be an official member that is widely restricted to the UK only.
McLaren does not require a membership to the website to view all media, this means all content is free to the user, and differentiates the website from other sporting sites, however the links to social media such as Facebook and twitter are similar to the other sporting websites, although McLaren have to highlight social media more as it the only way they can gain registered online followers of the team.
The Yankees website allows for the people to register to the website and subscribe to newsletters to have them sent directly to their email. Collaborative filtering is also used to make recommendations for products based on items previously viewed.
An organisation recognising customersâ€™ preferences and remembering registered users names is a vital step towards building long-term relationships, loyalty and trust in the brand. That alone is one of the main reasons several organisations including Bulls.com use this method of marketing. The personalisation options bulls.com offers helps the organisation understand the wants and needs of every visitor who visits the site. By having this type of data bulls.com can now alter how registered users view the site. This also enables them to send direct email of promotions, news feed and selected topics users have chosen to receive regularly.
The usability survey results show that 40% say that the first impression is very good. With a further 50% believing it was good.
Media selections, featuring video, podcasts and radio are clearly displayed. This is good so that the user can easily see where to click to play the chosen media.
There is a lot to take in upon first impressions but the ‘PENGUINS’ title immediately stands out.
Colour, similar to the page design analysis, is in accordance with the franchise colours. The tabs, menus, media boxes, fonts, titles and background. Players are required to have their kit in colour co-ordination with the jerseys and the logo. This is very good in relation to familiarity and generating interest as people from all around the world who watched the Penguins on TV can log onto the website and feel at home right away.
In relevance to user touch, as aesthetics is the way in which something relates to the human senses, the user survey showed that 50% of testers said that their view upon the ‘3 click rule’ as good. This is supported by a further 20% feeling that it was very good.
Advertisements are visible yet remain dim coloured so that they aren’t at the forefront of the user’s vision. This is good so that site visitors see the Penguins features straight away rather than the ads supporting the site.
Aesthetics Generically, aesthetics is how a feature, a product or anything usable works with the human body. This is relative to the five senses, sight, smell, touch, taste, and sound. Successful evidence comes from the usability survey results that show 40% consider colour, fonts, graphics, logos, pictures and format to be good.
Attracting attention immediately is crucial in order to sustain interest and potential custom from users. The sight sense is a leader here and Arsenal.com features its title as the main site header. This text is bright as it is a vibrant red on a white background. It is supported by the club logo in the main header of the page.
Arsenal FC logo which links back to homepage.
Clear photo of the most recent report and discussion, this is the focal point of the page.
The usersâ€™ touch sense is also applicable in web browsing as they control selection and clicks through the mouse. The 3 click rule in web design explains that a user should get to where they want to be within 3 clicks. The success of this feature is supported by 90% of survey users feeling that the 3 click tool is utilised in a very good manner. The remaining 10% felt it was good, which means that all users who tested the site were able to get where they wanted to be within 3 clicks of the mouse.
Banner ads feature prominently on all pages of the site. Both internal shop promotions are external sponsorship adverts appear.
The AIDA process is an important part of aesthetics. Colour attracts a users attention like nothing else. And a brightly coloured site will enable the AIDA process to develop subconsciously in a users mind.
Red and white are the main colours of Arsenal. Both are used carefully to construct the site.
Aesthetics The use of various different types of media, through video to interactive timelines means that the user has various ways to keep up to date with the team and the teams progress, which is important in motor racing. The ease of use of the interactive software means that the user is never more than 3 clicks away from information they are looking for. This follows the 3 click rule used by most mainstream websites.
Examples of using the timeline and the video feature on the website show how easy it is for the user to access media.
Aesthetics Advertisements for the teams official merchandise feature along the left hand side of the website, however they remain in the background compared to the bright pictures, which mean that the user is drawn more to the team news than the adverts.
The main colours of the website are white, silver and red. This links into the team colours, and the colour of the car, which makes the user identify more with the site being official, as it has the teams colours.
Aesthetics The colour scheme of the website stays faithful to the MLB team New York Yankees with the reoccurring theme of navy blue that runs throughout each page of the website. The main background colour theme of the website is gold. The gold is not apart of their kit or badge so a suggestion to the gold colour choice is the theme of ‘Heroes and Legends.’ The phrase ‘Heroes Remembered. Legends Born’ on the top of website in bold grabs the audience’s attention immediately. The sepia colour combined with the text creates an historic feel to the website which deep-rooted fans of the Yankees may relate to.
The New York Yankees website keeps the title of the homepage and menus and toolbars to the top left hand side of the page. This is key because usability studies show that people look at websites in an “F” shape pattern. Therefore it is imperative to keep all important or newsworthy information to the top left so that people may notice important information first. When asked “Do you keep up to date with baseball news, stats and facts?” The less hardcore baseball still revealed that their were willing the to use Yankees website because they found the aesthetics and website usability good.
Aesthetics Aesthetics is made out of a mixture of Graphics, Colour, Style Layout and Typography, combined together create the personality of a website. On the home page of the bulls site several scoreboards are on display and can be easily alter to the visitors preference. Visitors can view previous match stats, watch highlights or previews of upcoming fixtures. Just underneath the scoreboard there's a screen that displays a mixture of promotional products, match day reviews, exclusive interviews and off court content such as charity events hosted by players. This style of layout is beneficial to visitors attempting to grab information easily and sufficiently.
The typography used throughout the site is basic making it easy for any visitors to read the content on the page. The site has also limited the use of different font types only changing the style of the font to grab the attention of the viewer for important messages. Some of the typography is alter to properly represent the sponsors.
This type of layout is also helpful because visitors of the site can navigate around the site at ease. Information about features such as mobile apps and email alerts are displays throughout the site informing visitors on how they work and the benefits of having them. The colour scheme used on the site are a representation of the teams traditional colours Red, Black & White. The target audience are also familiar with the three colours and a reason why they are used consistently around the site. The adverts and sponsors blend well with the theme of the site none standing out and distracting the consumers attention.
ON THE GO CONCLUSION Aesthetics The Penguins site reacts will the users senses in different ways. Visually it is appealing to all with colourful text, images and graphics. It uses the Penguins’ club colours very effectively – black, white and gold is the trio that make up the colour scheme. This is great relativity as fans are immediately able to associate the website with the organisation and therefore brand association also. The sound features on offer are also premium, fans can hear Pens radio broadcasts, media features and downloadable podcasts, all updated very regularly. It is good to utilise more than just sight as users begin to bore from just reading and images, therefore supporting this with extensive sound capabilities is a productive idea.
Arsenal FC uses brilliant aesthetical features to enhance the user and usability experience. The colour aspect relating to the visual is very prominent here too as the famous red stands strong above anything else. The site has carefully placed banner advertising that changes to catch the users eye. This is effective as anything that moves on a page will immediately grab attention. Secondly, the way in which the site works with the user’s touch is a success as 90% of users felt that they could get to where they wanted to be within three clicks. This is good structure skills and users do not want to click through pages and pages of information to eventually arrive at their desired place. They need is instantly and this is exactly what the Arsenal site provides.
The use of colours on the website is similar to the other sporting websites, they all use the team colours so the user can relate the site back to the team, however McLaren has used other colours to make heading and points of interest stand out, whereas the other sporting sites use the same colour scheme throughout. This enables the user to easily see all aspects of the website.
Similar to all team websites, they use the team colours for the main theme on their websites. It has a large sized team logo on the top left corner of the website. The Yankees website also has a video corner for media playback. Adopting the same club colour scheme is good so that fans and users from around the world are able to establish brand recognition immediately.
Graphics, colour, style and typography are the elements used to create aesthetics. While numerous site indulge in overelaborate graphics and turn a blind eye on their audiences’ capability, and patience to looking & appreciating them. Bulls.com drifts away from overelaborate graphics and mainly focuses on using important & relevant content that the target audience would be looking forward to reading & subscribing to. Simplifying how the content is displayed on the site and filling the site with a variety of tropics for viewers to chose from.
Page Design The page design of the Penguins website is made up of three main sectors. This is a good format to adopt as it is clear and easily interpreted by the user. This is an NHL Network template and all 30 NHL teamsâ€™ websites follow a similar layout shape.
Similar to all fully functionally websites, it includes an internal search bar. The user can type a keyword or something they wish to find and this feature will search the site and display all relevant results ,if any.
A I D A
The text and font is crucial in keeping users interested and attracted to the site. The title is clear and large in silver with the penguins logo forming the background. In relation to fonts amongst other areas , the usability survey results show that a combined 80% of people felt that it was a minimum of good â€“ with 45% of this explaining this aspect as very good.
ttention nterest esire ction
The AIDA process is important to the principle of the Penguins website. This is because, the Pittsburgh franchise is fundamentally a business and in order to be a success off the ice, it needs to make money. Therefore, enticing the user to act upon what they see especially in the official club shop, is important so that they actually purchase some products.
Page Design Each area of the homepage is separated out into its own box that features such as media, news reports and promotional activities both in the community and on the ice.
The Penguins website operates with the same structure throughout in order to be familiar to the user. This certainly aids usability, that is supported by the primary research conducted that shows 55% of users tested said that it is very easy to use.
Adverts for features both internal and external are crucial for money making and networking between businesses. The official shop advert to tempt users to browse and purchase from the club shop. As well as this external adverts from sponsors or from businesses that have links to the club, also advertise . The colour scheme adopted on the website is similar to that of the Penguins club logo. Black white and gold are synonymous with the Pittsburgh Penguins branding in general. Club uniforms, player equipment, and memorabilia products. Therefore, the colours of the Penguins related analysis are also black, white and gold.
Page Design Font and text is important also as it has the power to attract instantly. AIDA is relative here as big, colourful and bold text starts this process. Once engaged, the user can then be interested, begin to desire and start to act.
The Arsenal website features a search bar that will search the whole site for user entered key words upon selection. The top also features a mini toolbar that includes login, register and help. Language/location selection is also available and this is crucial in building on the already established global fan base of the club.
Many of the website features such as Arsenal Player open in a new browsing window. The left vertical navigation of tabs all open in new windows too. This is effective as it means that arsenal.com is still open during and after the browsing process of the new window page is complete.
This is linked to the persistent ads on each page. Many are specific to the club shop; with the final step â€˜actionâ€™ of the AIDA process will be users buying products from the online store.
Arsenal.com operates with both side vertical navigation bars horizontal structures also. Using a fixed template throughout the whole browsing experience, users can become familiar with tabs, icons and links quickly. Structurally, the website is constructed via 3 main sections. These sections are the toolbars and main menus, the main media area and the Arsenal Player sector.
This is a good idea to adopt as it means that once users have finished browsing the new window opened, they can then be re-enticed to the current page left open. Meaning that the AIDA process can start once again.
Page Design Once scrolled, the homepage is still in the 3 section layout however the two side panels are now mainly advertisements, and the main content section is now the latest club news feed. Additionally, there is area called media watch that features external media reports.
Membership adverts enticing using to become official Arsenal members feature regularly on each page.
The Arsenal Player panel of site shows the 4 latest videos available on the feature.
Some are free to view to all, others are only available to registered members.
The Arsenal website operates with the same layout of text throughout the main site in order to aid user familiarity. This is fundamentally important as enables a high level of usability. The usability success has been questioned in the primary research survey, and the results show that 45% would describe the websiteâ€™s ease of use as easy. This supported by the other 55% of users describing its ease of use as very easy. This is a productive result to highlight as happy users who feel a website is very easy to use will always revisit the website regularly, especially being that of a sports team. This is also excellent and effective in relation to traffic building and getting hits on a website.
The top of the website page features the teams name, and basic links to information about the team, history and partners, it also features links to social media, which is important as this is the most looked at area of a website.
The next part down, near the middle of the website, is where the interactive timeline is, this enables users to keep up to date with the team, on an easy to use platform, and is a unique design feature, as other teams websites do not have such an interactive means of communicating progress to the user.
This next segment is the message from the sponsor of the team, and also shows a competition users could win, which would not be available on other unofficial websites. The last segment features news from the team, and also links to other social media outlets for McLaren.
Page Design The website adopts a four column layout after the first row of three columns which is clear and easy to understand for the audience. There is a lot of information on the homepage so Itâ€™s important to keep the layout clear because otherwise people may leave the website early if they cannot find what they are looking for or if information is laid out clearly.
The website contains advertisements on the right side of the page. These advertisements are both internal and external and are good ways to promote the Yankee store if users did not know about it.
The homepage includes has sections which are broken up into its own box such as standings, photos, news reports. This allows clear and easy understanding for a page with a lot of information on it. A search bar so that users of the website can quickly find precisely what they want. The search bar uses keywords to find what has been searched and the results of the search stay within the website. This is important because it means all searches will not lead to other websites or irrelevant information. The survey revealed that a small minority actually use the search bar but felt that is good to have there.
Page Design When visitors enter the Chicago Bulls home page they are welcomed by a header that reads bulls.com this same header when clicked returns the visitor to the home page. This simple feature helps visitors navigate back to the homepage easier. Below the header is a submenu which is split into ten categories, by it being split this way helps the visitors find what their looking for effectively and quick. Key messages such as “Vote Your Bulls” & “BullsEYE” are clearly displayed on the homepage as these are important messages the bulls want to communicate with visitors.
At the top right beside the submenu are links to popular social medias, these are alternative methods of staying connected with the club and keeping upto date with the latest at all times. The site also displays several adverts some external and other internal, having these adverts visible plays a vital role of building relationships between the organisations and generating income on the site.
A footer for reference to copyright and privacy information is found at the bottom of the every page of the site written in black and red text.
ON THE GO CONCLUSION Page Design The Pittsburgh Penguins website uses page structure to formulate the perfect user experience through sectional areas and a continuous layout throughout. This enables familiarity between the site pages as the structure barely differs. Upon first glance, the way in which its laid out automatically start the AIDA process in the users’ mind. This is done through a three section site which is very effective as it enables the user to interpret information easily section by section. In support, on the content pages of the site, under a unique heading each specific bit of information is separated into its own box to establish clear and easy reading. This is good so that the user doesn’t get confused as to where each bit of information belongs.
The Arsenal site has a constant page design throughout, it is also made up of three main sections with the content section being the focal point, being laid clearly and centrally to immediately interest the fans browsing. All the Arsenal online features open in a new page browser, this may be annoying to some but it is a very good and clever idea to adopt as users will always have the original site page open behind the new link feature they opened. This means there is strong chance they will carry on navigating the site as it is still left open. 100% of the users tested in the survey felt that the overall site usability was good with some of this saying it was very good. User recognition is very productive as these are the people that browse the site regularly and this in turn will enable the club to generate money through advertising and online shop sales and therefore meet financial objectives effectively.
The use of the scroll down feature on the website allows the McLaren website to be different from other sporting websites as it has everything on one page, the fact that all headings are too the left, and the stories are to the middle, this helps the user find what they want more easily. Also the use of clear headings helps the target audience find what they are looking for clearly and effectively, and follows the 3 click design plan used by most official websites.
The website has plenty of information on each page however, the Yankees website does a good job of laying the information clearly for the audience. The search bar on each page allows for quick navigation to find specific things.
Bulls.com understands by having a consistent layout can be an effective way of communicating and interacting with visitors. Key messages such as the “welcome to the bulls official homepage” & “Vote Your Bull” are writing in different and bigger fonts in order to grab the attention of the viewers. Links, page size, menus and tables vs. frames are all considered carefully in that same manner for effective web use.
Navigation and Structure The Penguins website is structured into topic boxes, each clearly separated form the next. This is good so that the user can easily see what content is related to which headlines. The primary research data from the usability survey shows that only 15% feel that the tabs and menus are not laid out well.
The main toolbar on the page is horizontal, each tab labelled with black text and a gold background. Once clicked each tab on this menu will launch a new page of the site.
Based on top of the main media forefront of the website is a appearing upon hover minimenu. This links to other video features in the Pens TV player.
The homepage structure is very favourable with users, this is supported by research that shows 40% of people claiming it is very good.
The homepage also has a revolving media reel â€“ the only page to do so - featuring the most recent mixed media reports, stories and interviews. This revolving process is automatic but the user can self select the option they would like from the small toolbar of five. This is evidently an excellent feature as the user can skip reports and click to the one they are most interested in. The data supporting this effectiveness is in the survey results that show only 10% say the homepage structure and layout is poor, meaning the other 90% have a more positive outlook opinion.
Navigation and Structure There is a smaller less significant toolbar at the top of every page. This does not change as it is formatted as part of the NHL.com network that supports each of the 30 professional teams in the league. The tabs in this bar consist of other club sites, player sites and affiliate sites.
All tabs, menus, toolbars and selections become active upon one click. This is very good to utilise so that the user can get to where they want or need to be within three clicks.
Also connected at the top of every page is the NHL.com sign /register tool. Currently this space is filled by an advert highlighting the â€˜NHL vault serviceâ€™. However this ad space changes regularly.
Most importantly, the main toolbar struck horizontally across each page features it tabs in a drop down menu format. Sub menus that stem from the primary drop downs also feature. Primary research into the navigation and structure reveals that 30% of users say these are all laid out very well as well as an additional 55% feeling that these are laid out well.
Navigation and Structure The main toolbar presented horizontally across the page beneath the headline features all sectors of the website.
Tabs with further options produce drop down menus upon mouse hover. The user is able to then move to a tab of their choice, with many featuring a further min drop down menu of selections.
The main vertical toolbar features links that open in a new window.
Usability is crucial to the success of a website and the way in which fans of Arsenal navigate their clubâ€™s site is also key. Primary research data results show that 35% of tested usersâ€™ impressions of the navigation bars, tabs and menus is that they are visible and laid out very well. The other 65% feel that navigation structures are designed well. 100% of questioned users have a positive outlook of the navigation and structure, this is a good implication as it means all of these users are able to navigate the site in a easy and comfortable manner.
This is useful so that the user can still see the main webpage whilst browsing the other navigation options available.
Users have all expressed positive feedback of the homepage structure. 80% said that from their initial first impressions, the structure is good, with the remaining 20% claiming it is very good.
Navigation and Structure The structure of the website is linear, this means that you have to scroll down the page to see more new and stories related to the team, this works well as the most sought after information is at the top, meaning users will immediately see it when they go on the website. The use of colour also promotes ease of use as different tabs are made easier to see.
As you scroll down the website the colours change to show that you are on a different feature, the 3 click rule is in clear affect on the McLaren website, as most of the content is on the first page, but there are always clear links to other tabs throughout the first page design.
Navigation and Structure
Horizontal toolbar with white texts contrasting to the blue background.
Search bar so that users can navigate straight to what they want
The logo of the New York Yankees is on every page and links back to homepage when clicked.
Video playback â€“ when clicked shows latest videos concerning the Yankees
Direct navigation that will lead to whatever is clicked.
Users felt that the website was easy to navigate through and the webpage was clear to understand.. The Horizontal toolbar that automatically turns into a dropdown box contributes in help users navigate through the page easier. Some users felt that the website was congested with information however the topic areas broken up into chunks made it easier for the user to take in.
Navigation and Structure
Ease of use = Structure + Navigation + Page Layout + Interaction Ease of use is number two of the key factors that make customers return to web sites. (Chaffey, 2010) in order for a website to achieve ease of use the structure of the website has to be easy for consumers to navigate round. The layout of Bulls.com is easy for visitors to maneuver around and find the information needed on the page. Similar to the majority of websites found in the 21st century Bulls.com also has a built-in internal search bar that aids visitors seeking information not found on the home page or sub menu.
The bulls.com site displays a number of navigational tools (Hyperlinks and Menus) throughout the page layout, spreading them apart widely around the site. Spreading them allows visitors the chance to build a mental map of the site. At the bottom left of the site the sub menu found at the top is simplified into five sections. By it being broken down in this manner visitors of the site can quickly digest the information on display and continue he/she mission first set out when going on the site.
ON THE GO CONCLUSION Navigation and Structure The navigation and structure of the Penguins site was also reasonably successful based upon the usability survey results. The homepage features a revolving media reel that rotates between the five most current headline stories, these are supported by a large image or video still , an enticing title and the first line or two of the written report. This is an excellent feature as it enables the user to click through the five stories or just watch the stories rotate themselves, giving the reader time to read between times. Additionally, the toolbars used feature dropdown menus that become active on hover instead of click. Of which, some have additional sub menus that also dropdown, this maximises visibility by opening on top of the current page being browsed but is till clearly visible for the user to see. The main toolbar is horizontal is positioned at the centre of the vision, optimising the AIDA process as it immediately attracts and stands out via its gold coloured tabs with black text. As it is a network site there is an NHL toolbar at the top featuring the sign in tool and some pages of the Penguins site show the latest NHL site videos that are available to watch. This is good affiliate and partnership marketing as these videos will link the user straight to the NHL network website.
The Arsenal website navigation and structure links well to the user experience as it firstly portrays easily visible toolbars, 2 horizontal and one vertical. The vertical menu of tabs is good because each tab activates further website features like member, shopping and stadium information. The main site toolbar however is horizontal and has tabs that produce dropdown menus of which some produce secondary dropdowns. This is good as users do not have to search round the page to get to other areas as the drop downs feature each separately. The way in which the user gets round a site and how comfortably and easily sites are to navigate are fundamentals in the overall success, specifically, the usability questionnaire recorded 100% positive feedback on the navigation bars, tabs and menus in relation to how well they are laid out.
The use of social media throughout the whole website makes it easier for the user to stay in touch with the team, the use of a scroll down website makes it easier for the target audience to navigate the page compared to the other websites, as all the content is on one page. Navigating through the website because of the simple and clear menu toolbar on the top of each page. The logo on the top left hand corner also is very efficient in helping to direct the audience back to homepage if they wish to return. Bulls.com focuses on helping visitors manoeuvring around their site as easy as possible but also adding benefits and relevant content. They do this by keeping everything on the site simple and consistent. Having a well-structured site enables the organisation to keep viewers satisfied every time they visitor the site.
Interaction The Penguins website interacts with its fans through its media offerings. These services offer media; television, recordings and interviews via the Pens TV player.
The Penguins news feed keeps fans updated with the latest news and headlines.
1,223,573 people like Pittsburgh Penguins 267,810 people follow Pittsburgh Penguins
NHL network advertisements along with the Penguins official shop merchandise adverts change regularly and provide an insight into products that are new, on sale, updated and rare. This is good interaction as users will be more enticed to a unique product rather than a product that anyone can buy or sell.
The website also has the Trib Total Media newsfeed. Trib are the Pittsburgh newspaper and media tabloid that covers all Penguins action on and off the ice. This newsfeed features an external link to Trib Total Mediaâ€™s website.
In recent years, social media has become one of the most penetrative mass media communicators. The Penguins operate through Facebook, Twitter and a YouTube channel. Links to these are displayed on the media bar that appears at the bottom of each page. Usability survey research shows that 75% of users feel that the social media connections have been conveyed well. These are effective as both will enhance brand relationship.
Interaction Pens TV online is the biggest interactive feature on the website. This is a free-toall service that shows game highlights, post match interviews, pre game analysis and other video footage. Fans can click on any of the Pens TV links and are taken to the page below.
There are multimedia features that fans can interact with through the Fan Zone tab. Fans and users can download and view kids club news, e-news bulletins, podcasts, match photos etc. This is a good way of interacting as the offerings are all free to download and utilise for personal use.
Penguins Radio feature is the second biggest interactive tool available to fans and website users. This is a good variation to have as it appeals to the older generation of fans as opposed to the social media tools that the Penguins also offer.
The side panel of the Pens TV page shows the latest feed of Penguins video. Users and fans are able to scroll and select the media they wish to view without having to watch others.
The interactive tab on the main site toolbar features a drop down menu that shows all the other interactive features fans and users can explore.
Interaction Fanzone is an integral part of Arsenal’s fan interactivity. It is designed for Arsenal supporters to air their views, interact with fellow supporters (locally or abroad) and ask the club questions. Interactive features change very regularly for example, Fanzone introduces a new poll every week that gives fans the opportunity to involve themselves with hot talking points and discussion debates.
Within the Fanzone arena there are also free membership features that registered users can download. Wallpapers, fixtures and Supporters’ Trust information can all be obtained free of charge.
Helps supporters improve the atmosphere at Arsenal games (getting supporters involved in creating new chants, banners & flags).
Supporters can join groups REDaction & ASIA.org specifically. (Arsenal. Independent Supporters Association)
Upon the website homepage social media interactivity is also featured. Fans are encouraged to ‘like’ Arsenal FC on facebook and have the opportunity to follow the Arsenal players on twitter. Arsenal currently do not have an official account on Twitter – this could be an area of growth digitally. From primary research data it is clear that conveying these techniques and links is a weak point as 10% didn’t know how well these were portrayed. Although there was a solid 70% that the social media links were highlighted well there was another 15% describing it as poor. 70% of users is a positive reflection yet all others of the arsenal usability survey were resulting in significantly higher percentages. Social media connections and the way is which these are announced on the website is an area of assessment and potential improvement for the design team.
Interaction Coldplay performed at the stadium earlier this year and there’s a gallery of photos taken that day. Other bands and artists perform gigs at the Emirate Stadium as part of stadium tours. Free to browse photos of each event are available to website members. This means that the audience is limited to registered fans only.
Interactivity is pushed further as all users have the opportunity to view virtual stadium tours. Fans are able to digitally tour different parts of the Emirates Stadium, controlling camera views and commentary personally.
As part of additional interactivity and OVP features, fans are able to book real life stadium tours online. This opportunity is part of the Emirates Stadium area of the site that cannot be found on any unofficial Arsenal website.
Arsenal Player is the official on demand online video service of Arsenal FC. It shows the latest action and interviews from behind the scenes – an insight that fans desire. Arsenal describe it is as ‘the Player every Arsenal fan deserves to watch’. There is an annual charge for this feature which means its only available to official Arsenal member who have unique numbers to enter. The success of the digital service is very much dependant on the internet quality and speed that the user owns personally. A slow or bad connection will produce little or no video whatsoever.
Gunners Gaming is another interactive feature accessible on the site. Fans are able to bet through live sport and virtual gaming such as casinos and poker. This is the official betting partner of Arsenal. A membership account is required and with this comes unique free bets that can only be exploited by registered users.
Interaction McLaren has uses its different social media platforms, the growth of social media has seen the ability to interact with fans on more than one online level, McLaren promotes its twitter and Facebook page right at the top of the site, making it seem important to a die hard fan to sign up to multiple different McLaren medias.
There are 610,000 likes on Facebook and 280,000 followers on twitter for McLaren, showing the use of multiple different medias through the website of connecting with fans.
Users can just scroll down the website to find new/more stories about the team, headers on the website are only used right at the top and are for links to the official merchandise store, Tooned and other media platforms for McLaren. The scroll feature on the website means that its easy for any fan to use as all they have to do is scroll down the page and then click on an area of interest, simplifying the user experience.
Interaction Links to foreign baseball teams in Japan and Korea affiliated with the Yankees. This is a good way to promote baseball in Asia. Automatic drop down box for when the mouse rolls over a text in the toolbar. The text becomes highlighted to indicate what point the mouse is over and further options become available to the user.
Drop down box that will direct you to other baseball teams website when clicked. The New York Yankees also capitalises on the use of social media. At the bottom of the homepage there are several types of social media that can be used in order for fans to get connected with their favourite club.
Interaction Interaction helps to engage web site visitors by giving them some two-way communications (Chaffey, 2010) and one method bulls.com attempts this is through Bulls TV. Bulls TV is a mixture of Inside the Locker Room interviews, small documentaries of the bulls star and upcoming players, Bulls TV live (live streaming & podcasts) and special access, which allows visitors chance to watch off court events hosted by players, training sessions and pre & post game highlights and analysis. This feature gives visitors an insight of the club helping build the relationship between the target audience and organisation. This type of interaction is important to the growth of the site because it not only builds traffic but boosts the likeliness of visitors purchasing merchandise sold on the site.
My Bulls E-Newsletter & Bulls Mobile Alert gives consumers the choice of what information they would like to receive and getting answers to all bulls game related questions instantly via text message or email.
Another interactive feature is Resale marketplace, this feature offers visitors the option of buying game tickets sold by fans by verified by Ticketmaster that were probably sold out. Giving consumers a possible second chance of buying tickets at bargain rates, resale marketplace also helps consumers sell unwanted tickets and make a profit or gain back the funds loss. BullsConnect is an additional feature that interacts with supporter via social media outlets and the bulls fan forum. BullsConnect allows registered bulls fans the option to create a group, view fellow bulls fans BullsConnect profiles, win merchandise and ticket to games. Visitors can also get connected with the 7Million+ Facebook friends recapturing nostalgic moments, tweeting their favourite players and stirring up interesting conversations on the fan forum..
ON THE GO CONCLUSION Interaction Interactivity features heavily throughout the Pittsburgh Penguins website as there are numerous tools and activities that fans and user can interact with. Pens TV is the biggest feature available, this is a free service made up of videos of match highlights, pregame and postgame interviews, in depth analysis, Penguins social events and moments of hockey magic from the past in the vault player. Links to this area of the site are clear and are located on every page of the website. As mentioned earlier there is also free downloadable content available to fans through the relevant tabs that can be downloaded and used for personal use. However, the second biggest interactive feature that the Penguins participate in is social media. Through Facebook and Twitter the Penguins alert their fans to new website media content, promotional offers in the store and in game and postgame scores and stats. The website includes a media toolbar at the bottom of each page, this can be closed upon click but it features all of the social media connections and both corporate and websites sponsors logos that link to their sites. 75% of users in the primary research survey felt that the social media connections were conveyed well and it is clear that they are a success, Facebook especially as it has 1,223,573 likes from fans across the Facebook network.
Arsenal’s interactive features are also of high importance as they can generate leads through social media and other online areas like FanZone and Arsenal Player. The Arsenal Player video service is available through membership and can be watched at anytime by registered fans. The FanZone area is where fans can air their opinions, this is could so that the club can hear what the fans think about club’s current activities both on and off the field. There are also areas where fans can talk to other fans and generate new chants and banners to improve matchday support at games. FanZone is very effective as feedback is always important to development and progress. In order to progress to what the fans want, the organisation need to hear what they say and FanZone is the optimum way of achieving this at Arsenal.com. The social media links are unfortunately not as strong and success generating as they could be – this begins with Arsenal Fc not actually operating an official twitter account. The website does however have links to the players’ personal twitter pages for fans to follow. Facebook is the stronger more optimised tool as it does have 12million likes. However the usability survey results showed that the links to the social media pages could and should be highlighted a lot better as some users were unable to see the links and therefore access the feature.
The users are free to comment on all the different aspects of the websites, and the ability to comment is made easy, which compared to other sites is different, as the ability the comment on stories is usually only available to website members.
Plenty of interactive features such as mouse rollover, drop down boxes and media playback in order to keep the audience engaged and to make the user experience of the website better.
Appropriate interactions add satisfaction, value and flow to the web site. Bulls.com offers several interaction services such as Bulls TV, Bulls CONNECT & My Bulls E-Newsletter just to name a few, which help customers learn about features and benefits. These services help understand users preferences and bridge the gap between the organisation and users.
Copywriting Copywriting is vital to usability and the whole success of a site. The Penguins website utilises concise and clear text to draw fans in. ‘The Official Site of the Pittsburgh Penguins’ is struck across the head of the page. The user is instantly attracted.
The topic areas are broken into separate chunks – this is great organisation as users are not confused as writing is all laid out effectively and appropriately.
All eye catching information is nearest the top. This is a good technique as many users will not bother to scroll down. They will browse and flick/click very rapidly.
Considering how a site looks in all types or internet browsers is important. Logo background fills all free space on each IE, Chrome and Firefox.
Latest news, latest media and Trib Total Media news headlines. When typing in Google search engine the Pittsburgh Penguins official site is the first result found upon searching ‘penguins’ and ‘pittsburgh penguins’. This is brilliant search engine optimisation (SEO) as users are immediately drawn to the first result that is the official site. This is good in the combat against unofficial sites and other related sites.
Copyrighting Copywriting considers a wide range of typography related features that need to be addressed and obtained effectively in order to maximise usability and ultimately website traffic.
Scannability is an essential part of web browsing and the way in which users take in information online. At Arsenal.com fans will scan the pages, skim reading, looking for ‘stand out’ information in an attractive font style. Paragraphing must be kept as minimal as possible to avoid chunks of text – this makes text reading more user friendly. Designers must write for Scannability as content as ‘reading online is 25% slower than reading from printed material’ (kerryr.net [online])
Headline text is kept to a minimum and article titles are also short and sweet. Tab names are one or two words and all advertisements aren't too wordy. All of these make the site scannable – which is a focal point of the user browsing experience.
Spacing is a key element and Arsenal.com uses white space effectively as it is used to emphasise the red text in the media archive. This is done by ultimately being a colourless background providing a neutral outlook. Alignment and line length is also key with writing as text needs to be chunky, relevant, accurate and brief. This means that only the essential information text needs to be present – this is highly appropriate to titles and tab names. The main site title ‘Arsenal.com’ is a clear graphic text using a legible font in big and vibrant colours. The feature articles are aligned strategically into the top four with a longer list below dating as far back as a week.
Copywriting Copywriting is vital to usability and the whole success of a site. The McLaren website uses the silver and red team colours in the font to let fans know that they are on the right that they are on the right website
When you search for McLaren f1 on Google the official website comes third in the list, after the official merchandise website and the car manufactures website, this allows users to see more of the other aspects of the McLaren group, the first page on Google does not feature any unofficial websites, which is good for the McLaren team.
Copywriting The website includes images that are familiar to baseball and the Yankees in order to attract users to the website.
There are topic areas to break the information up into chunks. This is good because it means that the information is easier to understand and users can navigate efficiently.
All important information is nearest the top because some users skim read and are not bothered to scroll to the bottom of the page. They browse and flick through pages quickly.
The website takes in consideration other internet browsers, however the website logo background fills all free space on each IE, Chrome and Firefox.
Searching The New York Yankees on Google brings up the official Yankees page as the first web result. This is good Search Engine Optimisation and helps to defend against unofficial websites.
Copywriting Bulls.com has also applies the second Gerry McGovern’s rule of top ten rules of copywriting. Of keeping things simple, clear and precise. By keeping things simple, clear and precise helps consumers visiting the site navigate around it at ease, understanding exactly what services the organisation provides & merchandise sold. Throughout bulls.com visitors can view examples of this. When copywriting it isn’t just for human audience, but also the search engine spiders which read the words repetitively used on a website. “Bulls.com” repetitively uses key words “Bulls” & “Chicago” throughout the site because they are the two likely words likely to be search on search engines.
It’s important when copywriting to not assume the target audience visiting the site understand the organisation and products and services provided. When writing copy for a web site to aim for Chunking, Relevance, Accuracy, Brevity and Scannability, Bulls.com has applied this concept to there site knowing most viewers scan pages in search of headlines followed by brief digestible paragraphs of five or six maximum lines with a hyperlinked for visitors seeking further information on the subject. An example of this is displayed above.
In every part of Bulls.com there is an consistency of relevant and useful information provided. Bulls.com provides visitors with information of match day statistics, game highlights, previews of upcoming fixtures and off court content. The site goes further by offering consumers the opportunity to customise the information received and alternative ways of staying connected with the Bulls.
ON THE GO CONCLUSION Copywriting The way in which the Penguins site is written is key to the success and usability also as clear and concise text will attract a user immediately. With this, the designers need to consider the format of the site and how it looks in all internet browsers. There is a black background to the whole website featuring the penguins logo, this fills all width space on each browsing brand. Firefox, Chrome and IE accommodate different sizes and this site is flexible enough to suit all. This is good so that user operating through Chrome can get the same unique user experience as someone browsing through IE and vice versa, and so on. It may sound an obvious idea to follow but the most important information needs to be located at the top of each page on the site. Users do not want to read mounds and mounds of text therefore is it crucial that key information and the most up-to-date information is at the top or as near as possible. This clearly occurs on the Penguins site enabling users to see and read the most important information first before scrolling down for further reports and text.
Arsenalâ€™s website incorporates good copywriting techniques to maximise usability. Spacing and white space usage is crucial to text reading and consumption. Arsenal use both in order to highlight the titles further and to separate each report from the next. This is good as white provides a non-distracting neutral background thus enabling the user to read text easily. Headline text is prominent and simple to read and the paragraphing style is small and concise. Alignment of text is a complicated feature as straight lines seems the obvious yet a more strategic approach is necessary in order to attract the user to read more and more each time they finish the previous. Scannability is considered whilst a website is being designed. It was considered well in this instance as users donâ€™t want to be read large chunks or text at one time, therefore at Arsenal.com we can see that until the user clicks on an actual article, report or link that text is kept to a minimum to avoid boring the reader. This is good as it means that a user will continue to read on as they are only fed the important and crucial bits of information up until they actually open the text fully.
McLarenâ€™s website is easy to find on Google, which is similar to the other sites, as they are all official. The ease to find these websites helps them gain more web traffic.
Each page on the Yankees website is accurate and filled with relevant information. Parts of the websites are broken into chunks for the reader to take it in easier.
Not everyone who visits Bulls.com may know what the site offers and bulls.com understand this and try avoid using internal jargon about services and products on offer. Bulls.com also keeps everything on the web site simple for visitors to quickly understand and navigate round, only adding relevant and useful information on the site.
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS With online value proposition, compared the other analysed websites, McLaren did this the best by using advanced software and techniques; enabling ease of use and a unique website concept. The Penguins, Yankees and Bullsâ€™ websites operate as part of sport specific network run by the league organisations. McLaren operate as its own entity, this gives designers move freedom when building a unique and effective site. Dynamic design and personalisation is key to usability and traffic building also as users have the ability to sign up and gain added value through the fan service. The Penguins site offers a free registration members to fans anywhere in the world. The other four sites memberships are also free, however fans and users gain more features through the Penguins. The registration form adopts a simple three step process, with supporting user value coming from the NHL network, as the membership is actually through the network but specific to the Penguins. This is good as it enables the Penguins to generate more likes and followers on social media sites. How a website looks, sounds and reacts to touch is crucial it a successful and easily usable site. Chicago Bulls operate with a simple layout but a times it looks too plain and unattractive. In comparison, Arsenal have an interactive homepage highlighting its main media outlet (Arsenal Player), links to the official shop and the latest news media feed; all clear and visible for the user to see. This is effective and proven by primary research data that showed that 40% consider colour, fonts, graphics, logos, pictures and format to be good. The design and layout of webpages can immediately attract or deter users as a muddled format can confuse and lose fansâ€™ attention. The Penguins site is the leader in this area as its content is categorised into specific sections and boxes as opposed to Arsenal and McLaren for example who both have written content laid out in a less strategic fashion. This is a good technique for the Penguins to adopt as it enables users to be able to see clearly and read visibly what content goes where, and what reports belong to which titles. As a result, this aids usability through clear and precise writing explained later in copywriting. Navigating a website and its structural placement is also key to a successful site. Users do not want to be clicking navigation tabs over and over again to find value information. The McLaren site struggles in this area as its structure is an ongoing scroll page. This means that users have to troll through loads of potentially useless information in order to get what they are looking for. The Arsenal site however has effective navigation and structure as the main toolbar features drop down menus with some of these featuring sub drop down menus. All become active upon mouse hover rather than click, this is good as it minimises the amount of clicks the user has to do. As a consequence, fans and users are able to feel the three click rule effects has there are minimal clicks that need doing on this site.
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Fan interactivity is the most important part of web design and usability. Interactive features are what fans and users can use, explore and utilise in order to gain further value from their favourite sports teamsâ€™ website. McLaren and Pittsburgh Penguins are extremely strong in this area as firstly, McLaren offer a completely different, unique set of interactive tools. Live interaction is the main as live race feeds, driver updates, cockpit cameras and team radio provide the user with multiple levels of interaction with the team. In comparison, the Penguins offer a wide range of interactive services, many being free downloadable content and free online video streaming. Free content available for download is good to have as fans appreciate freebies and will feel they are valued as they are able to get things for free. All five analysed websites are written well using clear, chunky fonts and titles to establish both user attention and brand/team recognition. However, the stand out is the Arsenal website as its text content is of the minimum. The others too but Arsenal operate with a media title and then the first line of the report, enticing users in. The homepage specifically is text minimal and is easily scannable. This is very good as we know that users don't fully read online they only scan text quickly in order to find what they want. Our recommendations for each website have been finalised through primary research data, personal experience and a comparable breakdown of each web design element. Pittsburgh Penguins is a solid site as a whole but it could improve upon its colour aesthetics. This could be done by introducing brighter, more vibrant colours to make the site more attractive. Current colours follow the franchise colours and bringing in more may not be relative but we feel more attractive colours will attract the attention of the user for a longer period of time. Arsenal FC need to improve upon the way in which they convey their social media connections. Facebook is the main platform used, and they do have over a million likes but the way in they highlight their Facebook page on their official website is weak. Research data confirmed this and as a result we feel that Facebook especially should figure prominently at the top of the homepage and all pages too. In order to continuously make the users aware. McLaren operates an effective website but we feel it should introduce a membership service. The reason for this is so that users can gain more personal information and feel a more personalised site experience, both will encourage the user to return to the website on a more regular basis. The New York Yankees could improve the interactive services they offer. We believe they should introduce a user recommended media feed, this adds a more personalised feel to the site thus giving the user further added value from the team he of she supports. The Chicago Bulls site is also good but does also have areas of improvement. The visual layout looks very congested therefore we suggest that a more planned approach is need in order to minimise content to the necessary text and graphics only. This will aid aesthetical success.
Smart Insights. (2012). Online Value Proposition [online] http://www.smartinsights.com/digital-marketing-strategy/online-valueproposition/ [10/12/2012] Dave Chaffey (2010). eMarketing eXcellence. 3rd edition. China: ButterworthHeinemann. 263, 272
THE GLOBAL GAMES
Josh Oberman McLaren Analyst
Craig Bennett Chief Editor
Reece Molyneux Yankees Analyst
Regis-Joseph Muloway Bulls Analyst 58