Category: Volvo

So What About Volvo? Does Your Site Suck Too? — Blog of Ronnestam

Yesterday I wrote a blog post about SAAB. It obviously created some sort of attention since I almost had a new unique visitor record. Among the commenters were official SAAB representatives, positive even though I had quite a strong tone in my post. Another commenter, a bit surprising, was David Holecek, Interactive Marketing Manager at Volvo Cars. In his comment he wrote – “Sticking my neck out a bit, it would be interesting if you would do a similar exercise on our site (or rather, as we do not have all the shopping tools on our international site). We may be asking for a potentially harsh treatment :-) , but feedback is always important.”

I was planning to do a video on the Volvo site as well, but due to kids at home I’ve not gotten the possibility to record something yet. It’s just to noisy! But, David, I decided to give you some feedback anyway.

I only walked through the XC60 part of the site since I’m more or less looking at buying exactly that kind of car right now. (Probably the new BWM X3, but I do like the XC60)

It’s sort of two-faced but here we go.

  1. You’ve done your lesson when it comes to usability. Most things work the way they should part from minor things when I’ve already chosen a car and then have to re-choose it once I wanna testdrive for example. I like that I can have a PDF mailed with my built car.
  2. The ‘closed’ interface forces me to navigate to much. Create less pages with more content instead. People don’t care about scrolling if they’ve come to the right place. Especially not in iPads and iPhones.
  3. Drop the link structure and implement a more SEO friendly structure and taxonomy.
  4. I’d implement a lot more links between the sections. Such as moving people from the ‘What XC60 should I choose’ into the configuration tool for example.
  5. It’s all built in Flash. That sucks from several known reasons.

Volvo Cars on iPad

How Volvo Cars look on the fastest growing internet platform in the world…not good.

And probably lots of more things. But…time…kids…

What if it looked like Apples website?

So, how should it look then? That’s of course a big thing to give feedback on and it would take some time, on the other hand, it’s sort of interesting to have a look at Apple, then swap all the content for Volvo Car content and see what happen. Hmm, why not try it? Said and done. I sat down for an hour and overlaid Apples Macbook Air section with XC60 content just to see what would happen. Here’s the result.

XC60 First page in an Apple Costume.

I’ve more or less just swapped content except for some copy that I quickly wrote to convey the right feeling. Don’t mind the top nav, it’s just there to get that Volvo feeling into the site. Click here to get the full view

An alternative XC60 Volvo website based on apple


Note. The design above is only produced for teaching purposes. Not to be used commercially

Volvo XC60 – The Design in an Apple Costume (excuse the mega long image)

By building the entire design experience, with designer videos, galleries and more, into one single page, you’ll award the visitor by letting him explore everything about the design without having to open new pages. You’ll also ensure that every link to the new Volvo XC60 design section delivers the exact same experience. You’ll have seconds to get people to stay, dont waste them on endles menus. Click here to get the full view.


Note. The design above is only produced for teaching purposes. Not to be used commercially

So, with that said (or designed…copied… in an hour). I think the Volvo Cars site features some sweet content and nice functionalites, but I’d repackage them into HTML5 based websites, lesser menu options and a bolder feeling to it. Obviously I’d spend more time than this to really work out how it should look in the future. Cars are beautiful objects made to be used by people so their sites should be too.

Thanks David for reaching out and I hope I’ve give you something to think about!

Related posts you might like:

  1. Dear Saab. Your Site Sucks
  2. Why SAAB, Volvo, Ford, BMW, Volkswagen, Mercedes, Peugeot, AUDI, Chevrolet, Buick and the rest of the car industry should the adopt the iPhone model and develop the InCar OS

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10Best Surprise: The S60 is a Red-Meat Volvo

We spent last week driving 60-plus new cars in order to decide our 2011 10Best list. When that many cars are gathered in one place, many of which we haven’t driven before, there are bound to be some unexpected discoveries. Be sure to check out more 10Best surprises, and look for our annual 10Best issue to hit newsstands on December 7.

The name Volvo brings a lot of things to mind: safety, Scandinavian design, and perhaps flat-pack furniture. But words like “excitement” or “performance” are probably filed somewhere behind “Hey, why does the logo look like Austin Powers’s necklace?”

Hot-rod Volvos of the recent past received power and suspension upgrades that looked good on paper, but the resulting cars were slower than the competition and delivered a stiffer ride that did little to enhance real-world sportiness. The new S60, however, is a different kind of Volvo. On a pre-10Best outing to our test track, the S60 T6 AWD (the only version coming to the U.S.) went from 0 to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds and cracked the quarter-mile in 14.1 seconds at 102 mph. That’s almost a second quicker to 60 mph than the last-generation S60R. And those numbers are right in line with other luxury cars in the $40,000 realm (the S60’s base price is $38,550).

The S60 is still a Volvo; you can’t completely turn off stability control, and the nanny-esque safety functions like lane-departure warning make themselves known with annoyingly shrill chimes. But the fact that the newest Volvo has some cojones is not only a surprise, but another reason why 10Best time is the best week of the year at Car and Driver.

Volvo Launches New Site Designed For Speed

by Karl Greenberg, February 10, 2010: 4:17 PM

Volvo has launched a new Web site in the U.S. that it hopes will benefit from a consumer trend: while people are spending more time online, they are visiting fewer and fewer sites.

Volvo hopes its new Web site, designed for speed and customization based on visitor behavior, attracts people who are looking to get more done at one place and want an emotionally satisfying experience. The site extends the Volvo theme, “There’s more to life than a Volvo. That’s why you drive one.”

The company said the old site wasn’t allowing consumers to connect with the car on an emotional level, wasn’t integrating brand stories and campaigns and offered no platform to allow consumers to have share of voice. Those latter elements were on separate sites. Now all ad elements including research are intertwined with brand messaging; and the site embeds social media elements on Twitter, YouTube and elsewhere. (more…)

Volvo Backs Star Turn With ‘Twilight: New Moon’

by Karl Greenberg, Tuesday, October 27, 2009, 3:39 PM

Volvo is launching an international promotion around “Twilight: New Moon,” the second installment of Summit Entertainment’s “Twilight” motion picture series, premiering on Nov. 20.

In the romance film, vampire Edward Cullen drives Volvo’s XC60 crossover. Volvo’s C30 3-door coupe was featured in the first movie, but this is the first of the films in which Volvo is actually marketing around the car’s star turn.

“It was a missed opportunity in the first film because the car had actually four minutes in the film, which is unheard of in product placement,” says Linda Gangeri, Volvo’s national advertising manager. “It did really well without us doing anything, so with the second film we worked with the studio to develop a global program.” (more…)

Twilight’s ‘New Moon’ Rises for Volvo


The contest plays off of a product placement deal with Summit Entertainment, under which Edward Cullen drives the XC60

Oct 30, 2009 – Kenneth Hein

Can vampires sell cars? Volvo certainly thinks so. The Swedish carmaker has launched On the site, consumers can win the chance to attend the premiere of The Twilight Saga: New Moon on Nov. 16, meet members of the cast and receive their own Volvo XC60.

The contest plays off of Volvo’s product placement deal with Summit Entertainment, under which Edward Cullen drives the new crossover vehicle. “Volvo is central to Edward’s character in the Twilight saga,” said Doug Speck, president and CEO of Volvo Cars of North America, in a statement.

The chance to win the car begins Nov. 1. Fans are challenged to answer a series of questions. Participants are encouraged to exchange hints through Twitter, Facebook and MySpace. The first one to solve the puzzle wins. The site also features a trailers, a variety of photo downloads and wallpapers. (more…)