I am really enjoying reviewing Zazzle Stores and learning a lot myself in the process.
Previous reviews (check out the tips as they apply to us all)
It is definitely the case that it is much easier to be objective when looking at other designers stores and impossible to be anything like it when looking at ones own. As such, it should come as no surprise that along with those of you who have tweaked your stores based on the TIPS given in each Zazzle Store review I have completed , that I have been doing the same to my own store. 🙂
I am constantly mindful of being a warty toad selling acne cream. I do feel that I need to be ‘on point’ in order to have some credibility re this review process. It is though far more enjoyable to be writing and designing than tweaking Zazzle store layouts – especially when one has been royally bitten on the Butt by Zazzle’s store changes.
If like me a couple of years ago you spent a hundred plus hrs fine tuning multiple store designs and layout only to have Zazzle overnight remove everything you’ve done as they’ve changed the store format – you know of what I speak! Ouch, were we bitten by that one. I was a NOT a happy bunny at the time, but I can appreciate the benefits of the changes now. I bear the scars though .. 😉
Moving on – This Third Review is about the Store of Sir (yes, he commands that title I feel) Reginald P Hart Jesterful.
This store is multi-purpose as oppose to niche and caters to main stream tastes and has the added bonus of the items being customizable, hence their popularity.
Store About Page
Sir Reggie is hiding his light under a bushel, there is a lot more to be said about him, his accomplishments than are revealed here. I expect he doesn’t consider it relevant. However, if customers are taking the time to look at an about page, they do quite like to see a little something by way of a bio re the designer. It also helps make a connection, all important if you’re aiming to create a following.
TIP: If you have a blog or website do add the full URL (*no tiny URLS) to your about page for customers to copy and paste into browsers should they want to know more. You can add a live link to your descriptions of individual products as html code is allowed. *I say no tiny URL’s as people feel safer using a link which clearly states where it leads. Tiny URL’s tend not be trusted so much.
Also do add a few details about yourself by way of a bio for those who took the time to visit your about page. Note to self – update your about page!
Sir Reginald P Hart is The Thrifty Painter, an accomplished writer, poet and educator. Born in Canada he now resides in Korea.
I am greeted by the store banner that I feel does not accurately describe the store content as the products which are the first thing we see do not have those features. If I page down past the products which are unrelated in terms of theme and topic I find some very pleasing (to the eye and mind) collections. I would move these to the top of the page. They’re nicely categorized given the topic variety of the store and show off more aptly the products.
TIP: Think ‘Food Menu’ when laying out the Home Page and Product Page. How does a restaurant lay out a menu with their many meals so that you the customer can easily find the meal you want? They have sections and subsections with the main things people will want to look for as the headliners.
Zazzle DO have product drop down menus and drop down categories – I am uncertain how often customers new to Zazzle use those drop down menus. Something for future review
Where are Sir Reggie’s ‘The Thrifty Painter’ paintings? These need a niche store of their own. Ahh here they are The Thrifty Painter. They DO have a niche store all of their own.
TIP: This store’s URL ideally should be in the store description of the Jesterful for those who seek a different flavor.
As you can see Reggie is a VERY talented painter. His artwork is stunning!!
Original paintings on decor and accessories have great appeal. Same applies re poetry. Quite often people want to buy a sentimental gift with a nice verse. So hard to find original verses on printed items.
TIP: Time constraints however make managing multiple stores difficult and so a clearly laid out category page re a one-Stop-Shop type store is all important to show the diversity of what is available. Categories in this case might be ‘Paintings’ ‘Verse’ ‘Photographic Prints’ ‘Humor’ and so on. This layout would clearly guide the shopper to the niche they came to see.
It is possible to have a ‘general store’ and it be profitable, how do I know? Reggie has one 🙂 His items have mainstream appeal and their customizable features makes them very popular. I would however advise greater clarity re categorizing niches.
This concludes my review of the Jesterful store and now I present the products
I want to see more Thrifty Painter don’t you!
Please do leave your feedback re this review in comments and share with fellow Zazzlers who may benefit from the TIPS here-in.
Note: I have an ever growing list of Zazzle stores to review – subscribe to the blog (you will only receive a new blog post notice via email) via the left column, so you don’t miss one.