Fleet News

Webwatch: we review what's hot on the 'net

FORD'S easily-navigated site is packed with options, from a 'build your own' section which allows users to choose a selection of Ford models and build them, virtually, from the ground up, to a shareholders' section which provides the user with useful investor information.

All the features you would expect to see on a car manufacturer's site are here on www.ford.co.uk – a dealer locator, search engine, site map, model line-up, used car section and finance section among other options.

There is nothing flashy or particularly eye-catching about Ford's site, but it doesn't need to be as the simple design allows the user to navigate through the site with smooth load times and subtle use of images, as befits a brand monolith such as Ford.

The company doesn't need to make a big song and dance about how important it is – the expanse of content makes it plain.

This is one of the drawbacks of the site. The web is brilliant at presenting a small amount of information succinctly, but anyone who has ever tried to make sense of the Inland Revenue's online self assessment form will know it can be very different if you are having to map a course across a number of sections.

Ford's site is similar, while the home page presents users with a small choice of entry options: Vehicles, Finance and Services and Company.

Each has a number of sub- menus – for example, the car and LCV ranges and finance options lead users into more convoluted paths to the point where they will begin to wonder if their travels deep into the site will ever end.

A site map has never been such an essential feature on a site as this one. The fleet-dedicated section is found tucked away in the 'finance and services' menu, where Ford champions its Talkback offering, which it claims is Britain's most popular drivers' club.

I registered for access to this site and on trying to enter it got a 'page cannot be displayed' message. You have no choice, as a fleet driver/manager, but to use Talkback if you want dedicated fleet information. Jeremy Bennett

The lowdown

The site: www.ford.co.uk

For

  • A beautifully designed site encompassing all Ford has to offer the UK

    Against

  • The fleet area is marginalised and access to TalkBack thwarted by a fault
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