Let me start the review by saying I am getting paid to do it. This only motivates me to do the review, the opinions in the review are indeed my own. Like most of the sites I review I will pick apart the various things I hate or like about it more so than some fluffy this is what the site is aboutâ€¦on that note Halloween Express is about costumes, Halloween and otherwise.
The first mistake I see is some poor use of flash. Their logo uses flash, and does not link to the home page. I would swap the animation for a static image and a link home any day of the week.
Flash strike #2 â€“ on the right column they have a flash animation which looks pretty niceâ€¦it grabs my attention but does not allow for any action. Let me click this thing.
The next thing that pops out at me is the bunny costumeâ€¦the image looks like crapâ€¦it grainy. The funny thing I actually had to show for a bunny costume last week. If I click on the â€œshop for Easterâ€ text looking part of the image it takes me to a poorly optimized page the order of the page makes very little or no sense to me. I am sure the â€œcrown of thornsâ€ is a top notch itemâ€¦ seriously, I would display things based upon either what sells the best within a category or allow for some featured items on the top. The order seems somewhat random.
Another thing to note is the ridiculously long left hand navigation going on. They display 20 items by default which still leaves room for another 20 below with the length of that crazy ass navigation menu. Based upon the default 20 item display I would also allow me to sort by price, popularity, featured, and also allow to display all within a page.
Once I get into an item I like the cross/up selling going on with the you "might also like" on the bottom.
Back to the homepageâ€¦ the Easter graphic links me to kids costumerâ€¦ and there is only one costumeâ€¦ something is not right. I would think the main Easter graphic should relate to Easter COSTUMES! After looking a bit further the landing page for kids costumes is a mess, and needs to be looked at. It only has one item in the main category, sub categories seem to be fine.
Other then these errors I think the site is somewhat solid. I would write custom descriptions for all the costumes and maybe work on my product names/titles. Also I would get the category ordering looked at and figure out if you really need that many categories with duplicate content such as these 2 pet categories (one, two), especially when the root category is only a link to the previous 2.
Lastly I only added one item to my cart which was straight forward, but they force me into creating a new account at the beginning of the process which is a pretty long form with some scary red dialog in the middle.
Instead of telling people to fuck off, if they do not understand the paragraph you may want to offer phone ordering or an 800 help number. Either that or let me just order the stuff I want and not be forced into an account.