The homepage, although neat and tidy, isn’t the most aesthetically pleasing, but that isn’t particularly important in the world of remarketing websites.
Links on the right-hand side of the homepage take visitors straight to heart of the online auction action – the stock locator.
This is the section that holds all the cars for sale, including special deals and fixed price stock. The vehicles are shown in year order with the newest offerings on top.
Some people might be a bit wary about not attending an auction in person, but as well as being able to see individual cars online (there are photos from four angles) detailed information on each car is provided. Before anyone can bid (auctions are held three times a week), users need to register by filling in an online form. Once registered they can bid whatever amount they consider to be a reasonable price before 1pm on the day of sale.
Customers can also use a feature called ‘robo-bid’ which ensures users remain the highest bidder even when they’re away from the computer. The system bids in £50 increments up to a maximum limit, which can be set beforehand.
Site visitors who do manage to bag themselves a de-fleeted car can get it delivered for an additional fee. This can be worked out online by using a nifty delivery calculator: just type in your postcode and it works out how much the drop-off should cost.
Some areas of the site weren’t simple to navigate, though. In the Stock Listing area it was difficult to find the way back to the home page with ease.
But simple features do work to great effect at cars-direct. There isn’t much emphasis on design but most of the site’s interactive features work well – it’s admirably practical.
The site: www.cars-direct.ltd.uk
We like: Viewing of cars, and detailed information on stock
We don't like: Navigation is clunky in places