Once a week, usually on Friday, I write a website review for a randomly chosen retail jewelry store. This week the review is being moved to Wednesday.
For this week's review, I'm searching for "jewelers in Sedona, AZ" using Google Chrome in incognito mode. The results I saw during last week's review were formatted for a smartphone. This week the results are formatted for a desktop browser again. Oddities like that are usually because of random Google usability testing.
Here's the search results I saw this time:
Normally, I would choose the first jewelry store in the organic list or the Google+ Local Pack. I'll skip the first organic listings from YellowPages and Yelp and go to Grant Custom Jewelers LLC.
Here's the homepage I saw when visiting their site:
(click to enlarge)
Before I go any further, I would like to say that I write these reviews as honestly as possible, attempting to document my first reactions when looking at these sites.
That said, I'm shocked, and I didn't plan this at all. You see, Grant Custom Jewelers lost their domain name because they didn't renew it. It just so happens that I explained how you could lose your domain name in the Monday Nugget from this week. I can't believe the coincidence of finding a perfect example today. According to the domain ownership records, Grant Custom Jewelers lost their domain back on November 4, 2014. Today is July 15, 2015. Apparently they never changed their Google My Business account and they never set up a new website... Amazing.
Is This For Real?
My second choice is My Jeweler and their website:
This is what the home page looked like when I visited them:
(click to enlarge)
Once again, I have the feeling that something here is strange. The first impression I have here is that this is a spam website. The name "My Jeweler" confused me because it seemed like typical keyword stuffing of a website. I had to look at the About Us page real quick, and watch a few videos to convince myself that this was a legitimate store.
When My Jeweler opened for business in 2005, it was common to have a business and a domain name that matched an internet keyword phrase. Even I renamed my business to be "Jeweler Websites" back then. The name "My Jeweler" along with their website setup and content simply make it look bogus.
I'd love to look at their Google Analytics and Google Search Console to see how this is working out for them. But since I can't I'll just continue with the review...
Confusing Home Page
The home page has 3 boxes across the center and 4 logos that further added to my confusion.
The background of the box on the left side looks like a medieval soldier in a battle. Clicking that image brings you to an ad that was posted back on May 9, 2013... That's more than 2 years ago and certainly not appropriate to have linked from the home page. What's with the medieval soldier anyway?
The middle box links to the website lifesourcefusion.com. I can't figure out any connection between My Jeweler and Life Source other than that both websites were programmed by the same agency. Could the agency have made a deal to include a random ad on My Jeweler's home page? Strange.
The box on the right links to a different e-commerce website that My Jeweler set up for themselves. This is the only reasonable link of the 3 boxes.
The 4 logos at the bottom link to other local businesses in the Sedona area. The headline above the logos says "We Have Been Featured In The Following Publications." I'm assuming they paid for ads in those 4 publications at some point. However, if editorial features do exist then I would link right to those online articles instead of the home pages like they are now.
Jewelry Repair Page
I'd like to end this review on a positive note so let's look at this page:
Which looks like this:
(click to enlarge)
Most of the jewelry services or jewelry repair pages I see on other websites are nothing more than a bulleted list of what they do. Sometimes I find descriptions of the services.
I like what My Jeweler is doing on this page because they've included a photo and a decent length description for each of their repair services. This is a good model for every jewelry store to follow.
That's it for this review, I'll see you next week back on the normal Friday schedule...
FTC Notice: I randomly choose this website and won't be telling the retailer jeweler that I'm doing a review. Unless someone else tells them, they will only find out about this review if they examine their Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools. I'm not doing this to solicit business from them, but rather as an educational exercise for everyone. This review is completely impartial and all my comments are listed in the order that I discovered them.