More failed redesigns: Mojo and 24Seven

I spotted Hope Technology’s new website a while back and branded it a failure. Alas that seems to be something that’s spreading throughout the UK mountain bike industry.

Mattmagic pointed out that both Mojo and 24Seven have recently launched redesigns. He’s left it to me to point out exactly what’s wrong though. Let’s take them in turn:

24Seven Bikes

  • That’s possibly the most pointless splash page in the world, ever. What’s more, it’s completely inaccessible. Where a normal link would have worked, they’ve gone with an image map. They’ve used obstructive javascript instead of the href attribute. Best of all, they’ve forgotten to include any alt text. Search engines? Screen readers? No, I didn’t think so.
  • Oh, I see, it’s supposed to open in a perfectly sized popup window isn’t it? It doesn’t though, because I’ve told Firefox to open links in the same window unless I say otherwise. Someone needs to read Veen’s Give Up Control.
  • Frames? In this day and age? Are you quite mad?
  • Great use of the title element. A nice helping of UNTITLED DOCUMENT across the top of the browser window looks really professional.
  • Those are some nice navigation buttons you have there. I can’t read them though. Is there any chance you might choose a legible font next time?
  • Whenever you use a graphic to create a navigation element, you must supply alt text. It’s not an optional extra.
  • Speaking of navigational elements, using select elements to jump between pages is just plain daft, especially when they cease to work without Javascript.

Oh I give up. I could carry on for hours about this one.

Mojo Suspension Hoodoo

  • Oh man, another great splash page. Why do people still bother with these? This one looks great if you’re browsing maximised at 1280 x 1024. Anything less and I start to get horizontal scrollbars. Even better is the fact that there are no obvious navigational elements. It takes a good few seconds before you realise those three words down on the bottom left are buttons.
  • What the hell is an M-CYCLE anyway? Just write motorcycle and be done with it.
  • We’re currently greeted with the message “THE WEBSITE IS CURRENTLY BEING UPDATED (20/03/06), SO SOME IMAGES & LINKS MAY NOT WORK. PLEASE BARE WITH US, AS IT WILL BE SORTED OUT VERY SOON, THANK YOU.” Firstly, you might want to spell “bear” correctly. Secondly, why did you launch if the site was going to be full of broken links? That looks professional, doesn’t it?
  • Once we get inside we find great use of frames once again. I don’t tend to keep my browser maximised, and I quite often have a sidebar open. Thanks to the brilliant design of this site, half of the navigation disappears off the side of the page. Now, I know I ranted about unecessary horizontal scrollbars up there, but here’s somewhere I actually need one. Unfortunately, one isn’t forthcoming. Just fantastic.
  • Clearly I’m going to have to shout it this time. ALT TEXT, ALT TEXT, ALT TEXT and not just when you feel like it, either.
  • The bottom frame and the flash animation that sits within it: That really is completely pointless guff isn’t it?

Again, I could go on.

In conclusion

These sites are both great examples of work by someone who’s got themselves a copy of Dreamweaver but has virtually no idea how to use it, let alone an understanding of exactly what it does or what it outputs. “As long as it looks OK on my PC that’s good enough”.

As for semantic markup and standards compliant code, there’s no point even showing it to the validator. It’s awful. Not quite as bad as Hope’s code, but I suspect that’s simply because Dreamweaver has cleaned up it’s act a bit over the years.

Don’t get me wrong; I don’t particularly enjoy tearing someone else’s work apart like this. I know that these companies produce damn good product and have great customer service. Alas their websites are absolutely awful and someone needs to say something.

So well done. Congratulations on your . Joe Clark would be proud. For your sakes I hope you got them dead cheap.

16 Responses to “More failed redesigns: Mojo and 24Seven”

1. Simon

Ahh frames, how I love them so. Im glad people still make sites like this, makes me feel better about my own sites :-p At least im not that bad.

Mind you, i’d hate for you to critically review one of mine :-p

2. Olly

/me wanders off to sp303 ;-)

No, you see, you didn’t pay someone a shedload of money to build your sites, you did them yourself. Any that you’re making money from – they’re fair game :-)

3. matt

http://www.dothelocalmotion.co.uk/default.htm

click “access keys”
oh no.
:(

4. matt

sorry, that was a bit of a tangental post.
ignore me.

5. Olly

Oooh, that’s a nice 404 page isn’t it?

I’m not sure about Access Keys in general. I found a site the other day that had set an access key such that when I pressed Alt + F (to open the file menu) it just passed focus to their search box, which is thoroughly stupid.

I won’t point out that local motion is somewhat b0rk3d in Firefox either.

6. matt

You have to be careful with the access keys, for sure.

7. Sara

I’m enjoying this nasty side of you Olly. You keep it up!

8. Ched Bing

24 Seven have a bollocks website, where are the real pics? not those shitty computer generated ones. Great bikes though.

9. matt

247 are now owned by Leisure Lakes….

that says it all really.

10. Phil

get a life will you…

11. tristain cook

this is a load of bullocks u fukin weardows that got nothin better 2 do err fuk ups

12. Olly

Thanks for that beautifully thought out response, Tristain.

13. SimonB

It made me chuckle :)

14. will

get a life cos u can’t ride a bike and hu cares cos they r amazin bikes anyway, java java html blah blah just ride and get on wiv it

15. Olly

Aye, great bikes.

Pity about the web-site, not to mention your spelling.

16. Don Lapre Is Cool

Didn’t know 24/7 were owned by them, huh it does say a lot doesn’t it?

Bob
Don Lapre Is Cool
bob@earthwormproductions.com