January 2022 Newsletter

Does Your Website Meet the Specifier's Needs?

**** The 4specs Perspective

How is your website organized?

Architects and specifiers have different information needs and different search strategies. Few specified product websites are designed for both types of users. Here is an older article about why home pages are dead and why website visits are primarily from search:


As an example of a websites not working, I was ready to purchase a new 17" laptop computer to become my main 4specs computer. When I went to Amazon I could easily find all the 17" laptop computers by clicking one box in the laptop computer section. Amazon shows the CPU chip, memory, drive size and price. When went to Acer.com (my personal smaller portable), my Acer choices were gaming, ultra-thin, convertable, Chromebook, classic and rugged. To find the 17" I have to click and visit multiple options and search. When I went to the HP website, they gave me a screen size choice and then did not show price or configuration to make selection easy. I purchased a HP computer on Amazon.

I am sure that HP would have made more money if I had purchased the computer on the HP website. That was HP's cost for a web design that did not meet my needs.

Are you supporting a specifer's needs on your website?

Architects are generally looking to solve a problem. Most likely they will use Google to search and land on a page near what they need.

The specifier is most likely updating a specific specification section and has that section open on his computer or on paper nearby. When landing on a manufacturer's website they are confronted with a choice of unfamiliar terms and probably will need to search around to find the appropriate products to evaluate and the specs and data sheets they require.

Some companies have a simple product range, and most products are in the same specification sections. Other companies have a range of products that can be specified in 10 or 15 different sections and divisions. Other companies (such as the lock companies) may own or have purchased multiple companies in the same spec sections with no clear way to select which company best meets their project's needs.

I recommend having a separate page for specifiers that is classified by spec section with links to product data sheets, specs and CAD and BIM info. This makes it easy for the specifier to find what they need.

If you email me, I'll send you links to examples you can review and perhaps use on your website.

Questions and suggestions always appreciated.



Colin Gilboy
Publisher - 4specs
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