Category Archives: Website Improvements

Making It Simple

We have a goal here at buyakilt.com to be the best place to buy a kilt. That’s a big, scary goal, but then that’s what goals should be! Something to challenge you and make you do better.

Big goals are achieved through small steps. Today, we made some small steps to achieve that. We simplified our top navigation.

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We’ve spaced out the items a little bit, and we’ve used fewer words for each product group. For example just ‘Hose’ instead of ‘Kilt Hose’. We think this makes it easier to scan the list and find what you’re looking for.

Product Organisation

We’ve also grouped products into simpler categories. For example, previously in the Sporrans category, we had sub-categories for ‘Full Dress Sporrans’, ‘Semi Dress Sporrans’ and ‘Leather Sporrans’. Now, we show you all our sporrans, and you can filter down to the specific style if you want to. It brings the products closer to you, and therefore should make it simpler to find the product you’re looking for.

Reduced Shipping Rates

We work with a number of carriers to be able to offer our customers the fastest and the cheapest delivery options, at times five or six different shipping methods were offered for shipping, you can see how this may have been confusing.

We’ve simplified shipping into no more than three methods, now offering Economy, Standard or Express delivery.

What do these shipping methods mean?

Economy  may be the slowest method, usually 2nd class. It’s untracked so no signature will be required upon delivery.

Standard is a 1st class service. Depending on the size and value of the parcel it may go untracked.Delivery in the UK is usually 1-2 working days but as a standard service is not guaranteed.

Express If you’re in a hurry, this is the option to go for. We’ll use Interlink Express for next working day delivery in the UK and FedEx or Interlink Express for worldwide deliveries. Express service will often be next day for USA and Canada.

Cost of shipping reduced by up to 30%

In reducing these options we have found that the cost of shipping to the customer is now reduced by between twenty and thirty percent.

We’ve combined a few of our shipping options to get our new shipping rates, this has led to a reduction in many of the shipping charges, we’ve passed this directly back to the customer.

New Site Design Makes Shopping Easier

A few changes have been made to the buyakilt.com site over the last few weeks. These changes should make browsing the site easier.

We’ve moved the search bar and contact information into the middle so it’s now even easier to find what you’re looking for. Our opening hours are also clearly displayed so if you need any help you can contact us during these times. After hours, you can email or leave us a voice mail.

On the right hand side you’ll see a currency converter. This is the flag and £GBP. Just click on this and you’ll be able to view the currency in Euros, Australian, Canadian and American Dollars.

newsletter redesign

The red header bar now displays our main categories, by clicking on any of these, you’ll easily find your way to the subcategories with links to our sister sites and our information centre.

Watch this space for more updates over the coming weeks as we continue to improve your shopping experience at buyakilt.com.

 

 

Results from our latest photo shoot now online

Have you spotted these yet? Nice clean, slick images showing our outfits from various angles and allowing you a full view of what you’re buying.

We took extra time to take pictures from many angles so that you can see the full outfit. You can also now view close ups of individual items. This is particularly useful where detail is key. For example the fly plaid and brooch shown in our Gold Prince Charlie Outfit.

All of the new images can be seen on the site. The majority of these are in outfits, but you’ll see examples across the whole site.

We thought you might like to see a few behind the scenes pictures from our shoot. I hope you like.

2013-10-02

 

 

New Info Centre Launched

We hinted in our last post that we had a new Info Centre on the way, and I’m pleased to say that it’s now fully live and ready for use!

Our Info Centre brings together all our information articles across the site, into a single place where they can be browsed and navigated more easily. Not just that, but we think it looks pretty good too!

buyakilt Info Centre Homepage

You can check out our new Info Centre here, and as always, we’d love to heard your thoughts on what you think about it.

New Addition to Info Centre: Tartan Day

We’ve been busy updating our information centre on buyakilt.com. Our latest article gives a little back ground on Tartan Day.

Held on April 6th, this relatively unknown event (in Scotland) is growing in popularity, especially in the USA and Canada. As far as we’re concerned another day to celebrate our Scottish Heritage is never a bad thing.

You can view the Tartan Day article by clicking here.

Let us know via Facebook or Twitter how you’ll be celebrating.

All Our Kilts – In One Place

When made a small change to our kilts category today that makes it easier to find the kilt you’re looking for.

Previously, our range of kilts were split between 4 sub-categories, so you could only view one range of kilts at a time.

Today, we’ve put all of our kilts into a single category, so that you can compare them side by side. We’ve also added a couple of filters so that you can narrow down the list a little.

We’ve been trialling this change for a few weeks and the feedback has been that having all the kilts together is much better, so we’ve rolled it out for everyone today.

View our full range of kilts at buyakilt.com/kilts.

Improved Search Functionality

We’ve introduced 3 new features in our site search functionality today.

Tartan Results

The first new feature is the inclusion of tartan results into the regular site search.

Searching our tartan database can be done through the dedicated tartan page. However, the tartan search box is not on every page, and a few people try searching for tartans in the product search box.

To help people find what they’re looking for, we’ve introduced a link before the product results, linking to any tartans which match the keywords you’ve searched for.

For example, if you search for ‘Royal Stewart’, the product search will return all the products with the words ‘royal + stewart’ in them, but now there’s also a link to Royal Stewart tartans right at the top of the page.

More Relevant Results

The second new feature relates solely to product search results. We’ve spent some time working on the relevancy of our search results to make all the results returned, and particularly the first few, more relevant to the search query.

For example, a search for ‘Royal Stewart’ used to return our Diana Memorial tartan rug as the number 1 result. This is a “royal” tartan and pattern is based on the ‘Royal Stewart’ tartan, but it’s not the most relevant result for the search term in question.

The updated search results feature the same items, but the order is tweaked to be more relevant with Royal Stewart tartan products appearing first.

Did You Mean?

The third feature we’ve introduced also relates to product search results. We’ve introduced a ‘did you mean’ feature which attempts to correct mis-spellings in search queries. The good thing about it is that it will only suggest products that are actually in our store so shouldn’t give you non-relevant suggestions.

We’ve also got this feature in our tartan search for tartan mis-spellings.

The Easy Way to Buy a Kilt

Finding your perfect kilt can be a tricky process and can daunt even the most seasoned shopper!

Thankfully, we know lots about kilts, so we can help you along that path. However, it’s important that we try to do that without confusing you with the plethora of options available!

One such confusing option is tartan cloth width. The width of a cloth is literally how wide the fabric comes off the loom. If the mill has very wide loom, you get a very wide cloth, if it has a narrow loom, you get a narrow cloth. The wider the cloth, the bigger you can make garments, without having to stitch two or more pieces together.

In reality there are very few products we sell that need a wide cloth. The most common item which needs a wide cloth is a plaid.

Traditionally, most mills used a wide loom to make cloths about 60″ wide. When making an 8 yard kilt, a kilt maker would purchase only 4 yards of this cloth and cut it down the middle to create two lengths of 4 yards, stitch them end to end and conceal the seam in one of the pleats at the rear of the kilt.

However, one of the largest mills, House of Edgar, switched to making most cloths in single width – around 30″ wide. This is fine for kilts as you just order 8 yards of fabric, but doesn’t suit anything that needs cloth wider than 30″.

We thought it was important for customers to let customers know about this when they were choosing a tartan so on our cloth selection page, we showed a swatch, the mill, the price and the width of the cloth. We also showed the actual price per metre, so single width cloths appeared to be half the price of double width cloths.

We found that this confused more customers than it helped, so have changed the layout of this page to make the width of each cloth less prominent, and have altered the price of single width cloths to display as an effective double width price.

We’ve spoken with some customers about this and we feel the new change makes the step of choosing your cloth that little bit easier. What do you think? Do you need to see the width while you’re choosing a cloth?

The change is now live on our site: check out the Macdonald Modern (my favourite… helps that I’m a Macdonald as well!) and the rest of our tartans and let us know what you think.