If It Ain’t Broke . . .
Whenever there’s an upgrade for my computer or my smart phone, they often tell you not to worry because the new graphics or design or procedures are “very intuitive”.
I really hate that because, if I get stuck and can’t get the device or program to perform for me, the obvious inference is that I am a hopeless dunce with no aptitude for this stuff.
And that brings me to Amtrak’s new web site.
It was launched several weeks ago without warning—at any rate it appeared as a complete surprise to me—and, of course, they screwed it all up. That’s not just my opinion, by the way. It was certainly the unanimous view of the folks at NARP’s big Fall meeting in Chicago earlier this month.
Actually, I thought the old Amtrak’s web site was pretty good. Very good, in fact. There were a few little quirks that took some getting used to—the button to click if you wanted to use points to pay for a ticket was small and hard to spot—but it was mostly easy to use. That’s important for me because I’m on the site a lot.
Anyway, I’m not sure why, but I find the new site hard to navigate. All I can tell you is that I just can’t seem to progress smoothly through whatever task I’m there for. Since I zipped around the old site with no problems, I choose to believe that must mean the new site is just not intuitive!
There! How does it feel, geeks?
I agree completely. On the EB to Chicago now. To get this ticket I gave up on the Web site and called Amtrak Rewards.I got a wonderful lady who was a real pleasure to work with and talk to. She even asked me about travel on the EB. You cannot EVER lose the human element.
I agree. I definitely liked the old site better.
I completely agree with you, both on the overall concept and on Amtrak’s site in particular. I booked several future trips earlier this month, and it took about twice as long as it would have on the old site. The new site probably does look nicer, but no actual user cares much about the appearance. They care about how easy it is to get things done. Far too often companies seem to change their websites because they think that will keep things fresh. That’s not what customers want, though. They want to get things done efficiently.
The same thing happened to the iOS app!