Anton Paar GmbH produces high quality measuring and instruments for industry and research. The company is big with many branches worldwide. Their official website looks professional as well with lots of technical content.
Form and Function
The homepage looked simple enough when I first saw it. Mouse hovering the top and middle menu implied that the website itself must be very rich in content. For example, there were so many links when I mouse over the “product” link. All the links worked (the web team must be doing their job well). However, the top and middle menu wasn’t that attractive. I was drawn to the media gallery link on the right side.
The “Product highlights” and “News” sub sections in the homepage looked quite plain. I suggest using some thumbnails beside the text to make the homepage more lively.
The videos in the media gallery looked pretty impressive. The 3d animations were fantastic. There were even games to be played. The only complain I had was that the video streaming was too slow for me. Perhaps they should give users an option to choose between different video quality. Popups can be annoying. Having one separate media section within the main site might be another possibility.
The product pages had the “products”, “industries” and “service/support” menu moved to the top as secondary navigation. Take three products for example, the Refractometer, Rheometer and Oxygen Meter, one could see that these pages were pretty consistent in terms of design and layout. The right column looked a bit empty though. If the idea was to promote certain cutting-edge equipment such as the MCR rheometer, oxygen meter or any other high end R & D instruments, then having them as banners on the right side might help. I also noticed the news section occasionally appeared on the right side – There should be thumbnails accompanying the news to lure more clicks.
What actually impressed me most was that the website actually supports different languages. Users can click on the language link on the top right to chose their preferred language (and it wasn’t using a translation software).
The site was professional in terms of design and content but looked a bit “robotic” to me. Even though the company could be producing measuring instruments, their website could be more lively. Perhaps having more human in pictures might bring more life to the site. Adding a bit of social media buzz might also help to engage users a bit more. A company like Anton Paar should have their own Facebook and Twitter page?