Amazon.com redesign: clean, modern design = tablet?

The word this week from the Wall Street Journal (of all places) that Amazon.com is redesigning – for the tablet age. And while there may be some truth to that, I think it’s funny how modern, clean design – automatically equals designing for a tablet. Design trends are always informed by the dominate devices in its time, and mobile is where our trends for today are starting. And since I’m now in the e-commerce space, I’m obviously interested, and took the new design for a test drive.

Amazon did the right thing, unlike Target – that shot out recently with a BIG BANG – so big there are instructions all over the site on how to use the site (nice design BTW) – amazon is modernizing in pieces, a little at a time. Here’s what’s new:


Header:
The header we’ve all come to know and love, looks, well… modern! Not major structural changes, just some rearranging, and a sleek modern “tablet” look.


Search Ads:
One feature I’m not sure about, as soon as you click into the search box (as I’m sure a majority do) you get some features links/ads. Not really sure what they’re going for here. But they disappear quickly as you start to type.


Shop by:
Something that was once considered radical (hiding something so important!), but now standard across most sites, the shop now get some visual tweeks, and some branded style.


Your Amazon:
Something new! These are your account options and services Amazon provides: movies, movies, games, etc… Also includes the cloud services.


Updated cart
Yea! A dynamic cart, with a quick view. Something I think all carts should have.


Promotions
No longer are we limited to just one promotion at a time, no. We can now have 12! Yes 12! Promotions at our fingertips. I’m sure this was the most requested feature!


Sub-categories
Now when you dive down, you see some sub-categories across the top, just under the header.


Buy buttons
The Prime messaging has moved from the top, under the header, to a standardized location on the right. The shipping options have also moved to this location. I find it easier to click the 1-click button, which I’m sure is what they’re looking for.

All your buy options are now in one single location.


Search
Search is getting some new filters to highlight all the different formats amazon books are available in, including HTML (?).

Overall – it’s a very minor redesign, and they’ve gone in the right direction – modernize what they can, when they can, keep moving forwards towards a new, updated, clean design. While not as sexy as target’s big band redesign, you also won’t need an instruction manual.

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