The Usability Blog
A Practical Guide to User Experience Insights

A 30 Second Analysis of PineSol.com – The Cluttered Homepage

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One short visit to Pine-Sol’s homepage will leave you with a bigger headache than inhaling the cleaning solution. Several words come to mind, including overwhelming, confusing, and even garish. The site seems to embrace the idea that if one eye-catching advertisement is good, wouldn’t an entire page of them be even better? Thus, everything on the homepage, including helpful links to product reviews, cleaning tips, value propositions, takes on the appearance of an ad. Unfortunately, the execution is just as bad as it sounds. On their own, none of the advertisement-like options are particularly problematic. But by cramming them all on the page, everything gets lost. The average user would likely have a lot of trouble with this page, as it’s difficult to know where to go. We’ve become fairly accustomed to browsing various websites, but this takes all our expectations and throws them away. Because everything is fighting for our focus, nothing actually manages to grab it. Even the top navigation links are lost to the overwhelming options below. This page needs a drastic change. The content needs to be grouped and organized, and presented in a much clearer manner. In countless tests, we’ve found that participants rarely engage with large advertisements, but are actually fairly likely to engage in targeted, informative advertisements that are not overwhelming or attention-grabbing. Therefore, content needs to look more like, well, content. If you’ll pardon the pun, this cleaning company really needs to clean up their homepage. What do you think? Have you seen any similar instances of content being presented as advertisements? If so, did it work?


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