Site Name and Description
- This is the official home page for Microsoft Store, and the successor of Windows Marketplace, also owned and operated by the company. The online store sells Microsoft software and hardware, as well as Microsoft Signature PCs and selects third-party software, games, Xbox 360 consoles, and more. Microsoft Signature PCs are computers from various manufacturers pre-loaded with Windows Live Essentials, Zune software, Adobe Reader & Flash, Microsoft Security Essentials, and Silverlight.
- Besides the online storefront, items can be ordered by phone.
- The website has 13 international variations for Australia, Canada, the European Union, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, South Korea, the Netherlands, Spain, United Kingdom, and United States. The stores in Europe are able to accept orders from, and ship to other European countries as well the stores and online shopping page.
Mission Statement: Aim to “improve the PC and Microsoft retail purchase experience for consumers worldwide and help consumers make more informed decisions about their PC and software purchases.”
- The design is open, professional and unintimidating. The uncluttered white background is inviting and the font type (Segoe) and size (rather large) used throughout is both friendly and easy to read.
- It is clear the order of priorities here, and what this site is expected to do. For example, products and services are neatly categorized and listed to the left (Notice Windows being on the very top of that list) with pop out menus as you hover over each category for quick browsing and navigation.
- The site is also structured to feature 4 heroes at all times, to show case the hottest and latest products, and sometimes even offers. A brief message and image is called out with a clear call-to-action button such as: “Shop now”, or “Pre-order now” listed for each of those heroes, and a “Checkout” button with the shipping card symbol that is remains displayed on the screen.
- A search box, support button (with a cute hand set symbol), and checkout button are included.
Audience (Team’s deduction)
- The approachable look and feel, as well as absence of tech jargon and site organization throughout appears to be targeting the average everyday consumer both male and female, our guess would be all ages really but primarily ages 15-55!
- Also, the site clearly targets more tech savvy customers by dividing them into 3 buckets: Students, Small Businesses, and Developers, allowing an easy filtering system and a clever way to suggest products and services. Moreover, the PRODUCTS, DOWNLOADS and SUPPORT tabs take the consumer straight to the “Microsoft” all up website for far more detailed info and larger variety of features and capabilities as well as products and trials that are unavailable on the online store.
Business/Site Goals (Team’s deduction)
- Although, the objective is summarized in the mission statement: Aim to “improve the PC and Microsoft retail purchase experience for consumers worldwide and help consumers make more informed decisions about their PC and software purchases.” , our take on the overall site/business objectives are:
- Support the Microsoft Retail Stores by extending the retail experience to an online environment.
- Inform and create awareness about the different products the store has to offer online (and naturally offline but that’s the center of our analysis)
- Help visitors make informed decisions and learn which products or services are best suited for their needs by offering info, online support (Live chat), and product trials.
- Finally, and most important, motivate visitors to make a purchase
Social Media Integration:
- Social Media integration is non-existent on this site, and that’s simply because if Microsoft wanted to create a Facebook page for each of its groups, it will need to create tens if not hundreds of pages. Our team isn’t really sure how to feel about this right now.
Technologies Used (Team’s deduction)
- There is no blog associated with the site, and no RSS feed, but there is a shopping cart, search box, live chat and products/downloads and support feature tabs that will direct the customer automatically to the all up Microsoft website. It also has the capability to run transactions for purchases.
- Another cool thing (unless it was a total coincidence) is that when our team member Ruba was in Chicago, the site suggested she visits the OakBrook store in IL. Suggesting that perhaps there is some sort of feature which recognized her hotel’s wifi network and registered in the system that Ruba was accessing the site locally!
- Joanna Mullally, Ruba Hashem, Marina Ferrer López
Reviews or Analyses of the Site