It is important that a website fulfills the need to complete tasks by the target user. There are many elements that must be considered in order to create and sustain a successful and beneficial website. Freud Communications is a large public relations company with large, world famous clients such as Nike and Pepsi.
Assuming the main purpose of their website is to provide information to potential clients, the usability and effectiveness of the site has been analysed.
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) means maximising the use of key terms the target user of the website is likely to enter in a search engine.
- Searching ‘Freud Communications’ in Google produces the website as the first result, ‘Freud public relations’ and ‘Freud London’ shows the website third. This proves successful in SEO for users searching for the particular company.
- Similar searches with more information regarding the type of company, but without the word ‘Freud’ gathered no results on the first page.
- SEO is only present for users already knowing the name of the company, not for potential new clients looking for public relations and marketing companies.
- Most of the text on the website is displayed as images, meaning there is less opportunity for keywords to be picked up by search engines.
- Information is easy to find under a straightforward list of links: ‘Our Services’, ‘Our Clients’, ‘Our Beliefs’, ‘Our People’, ‘Contact Us’. All links work well and take the user to the anticipated section of the site.
- Sections are colour coded which may help in increasing memorability
- The whole website is on one page, with the links changing the text and image on that same page rather than directing to a new one. This causes problems with the way that people are used to moving around the web – the browser’s ‘back’ and ‘forward’ buttons to not function within the site.
- The Freud Communications website is attractive and looks sophisticated, mainly due to the simplicity of it. The light colours on the black background enable the site to stand out from the majority of other pages on the web.
- Most of the text on the site is clear, although some sections contain grey, red, purple and green text on the black background which is more difficult to read.
- A good feature of the site is that it uses a “liquid layout” where the frame and the text size changes according to the size of the window.
- Web-users aim to complete a task as quickly as possible, meaning pages are more likely to be scanned for keywords rather than read.
- Text on the Freud site is minimal and words are sometimes highlighted using size and colour. However, it can sometimes be difficult to tell what is aimed to be highlighted when the text on a page is in three different colours.
- There is little information about current or previous clients. The homepages of some major competitors to Freud Communications PHA Media, Splendid and Shine Communications highlight recent news and events – Freud would benefit from including this. Video and audio examples of work would also benefit the company.
Interactivity/User Generated Content (UGC)
- The website offers no UGC or opportunities for users to interact with the company or other visitors. The only way to communicate with the company is the provided telephone number or email address (which is only found under ‘Job Opportunities’).
- Another way companies successfully use interactivity and UGC is through social media. Freud Communications currently do not have active Twitter or Facebook accounts (the Twitter account is protected and has zero following and followers).