HotUKDeals Redesign Nightmare

Leading UK “deal anarchist” website, HotUKDeals has launched it’s redesign website to mixed reaction.

The site which Quidco-founder Paul Nikkel had a hand in running, is a community driven website discussing the latest and greatest deals, special offers and mispriced items for sale online and on the High Street.

I’m not convinced the move was a particularly good one for a number of reasons:

  1. hukd_offline.gifHotUKDeals is possibly the largest dedicated deal / voucher community website in UK and any major change to the website look and feel will upset many users. They should at least have offered users the chance to use a beta version ala Youtube or eBay in advance of any rollout decision.
  2. The new website doesn’t work in Firefox. Well, ok it does, but there are issues with the stylesheet which HUKD put down as being a problem with the browser, not the website!
    I’m sorry to all the developers at HUKD but Firefox was around a lot longer than your new website! To blame the browser is quite a pathetic statement, maybe if it was an out of date and unsupported browser such as IE 5.5 then it would be acceptable but not Firefox.
  3. Timing. What a bizarre and reckless time to unleash your new website. This is the busiest time of the year for retail oriented sites like HotUKDeals and any changes like this are without a doubt going to damage their userbase. People don’t like change and the site revamp has rendered existing tools like their bookmarks and RSS feed useless, forcing people to now remove the old feed and add the new one.
    HotUKDeals isn’t the only website out there to offer this kind of service (a service which generates a lot of affiliate revenue for them) with the likes of MoneySavingExpert being a serious threat.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not all anti-HUKD, in fact I quite like their new website and can see why they’ve done it. I just think it’s been poorly implemented.

17 Responses to HotUKDeals Redesign Nightmare
  1. Joff

    “Sorry guys! HotUKDeals is down…”

    Just as I post this entry, the HotUKDeals website has been updated to a blank white page that simply says “HUKD is down”.

    Oops.

  2. Faiza

    i agre with evereything u have said…its a nightmare t navigate around and i hate it!

  3. Joff

    Turns out there was a beta site… trying to log in takes you to the domain http://beta.hotukdeals.com. Still with errors galore though.

  4. David Fiske

    I understand that sites need to adapt to suit the changing markets but I logged onto the site today and was horrified with what’s been put in it’s place.

    They seem to now be playing with words like “anarchist” which seems risky to me.

    I agree with your point that the timing isn’t perfect but I’m not sure a beta site test would have been truly possible as HUKD is based around a forum.

    Time will tell but my initial reaction is I don’t like it :-)

  5. HUKD

    Hi

    As I’m sure you know any site redesign always introduces controversy. We’d be happy to talk through the rationale later as we’re pretty busy right now!

    On your points. We did have a beta that members helped with. The site is fully compatible with Firefox and that is the main browser our developers use on a day to day basis. The issue is if you have Firefox set to cache and not update. Force refresh and you should be ok.

    Timing – fair point.

  6. Joff

    Thanks for the comment HUKD.
    I guess hindsight is a wonderful thing and I admit I’ve been guilty of some dodgy updates in the past too.

    I suppose if the new stylesheet was a different name/path to the old one it would have forced it to load.. but like I’ve said, hindsight. It’s not something I’d given any thought to before today!

    My comment re. beta testers was more that the site as a whole should have been made available to users (btw, I’m registered on the forum but haven’t been able to post for months..) as a preview of things to come.

    I think the new platform will give you a lot more control over how the site is run and in time people will come to find their way around.

    Maybe I’m being a bit selfish, but if the redesign puts off people from using HUKD, then it would be better for me as I’ll be able to take advantage of the deals before they sell out! :)

  7. bob

    “Any site redesign always introduces controversy?”

    This isn’t just controversy. It’s been panned by virtualy all HUKD users. It’s terrible! The original design was one of the major reasons for the site’s success.

    The beta was announced in a single thread two days before going live. So much for consultation with its valuable members! It’s the web sites members that have made the site the success it is and to completely ignore their opinion is nothing short of disgraceful.

    Timing? Why??

    Shame, shame, shame.

  8. harry

    Not sure if I’m the first to think of this, but has anyone considered that the site might have been hacked?

    The site is clearly dreadful and it seems like it’s all been done on purpose, including the timing of it happening. No prior warning to the change.

    Funny thing is I can’t even find the button to create a new thread in their forums (if they exist anymore)?

  9. [...] now been 24 hours since the redesigned HotUKDeals website was launched and now I’ve had time to ge... blog.jofftastic.co.uk/2007/12/hotukdeals-one-day-on
  10. Brett

    I thought it was a popup ad the first time I saw it! The new logo and “deal anarchy from the masses” is truly awful.

    I won’t stop using HUKD, because I like the service they provide. The only difference with the redesogn is that I don’t LOOK FORWARD to using the site any more.

  11. Luigi

    Hi Joff.

    Good post. I enjoy reading stuffs you write.

    Peace and Love

  12. Chris

    I was a user of HUKD before they designed their website. Now it is awful to use and amazingly difficult to navigate and find anything useful. I was so annoyed in fact that I have decided to launch my own site that goes back to basics.

    The website address is http://www.cheapukbargains.com/ and if anyone has any constructive comments on how I could improve it further it would be greatly received.

  13. erika

    Loved hotukdeals before the redesign but hate it now. What on earth were they thinking of? I’ve gone from a daily user to a once a month user. Cant get my head around the crappy navigation and customisation. Its crap

  14. Matthew

    http://MagicFreebies.co.cc update their website with 8 Freebies every day.. Thats right.. 8 new freebies a day. Become a member there and you could get a new item in the post every day!

  15. Joff

    I tried to visit MagicFreebies but it wouldn’t load. Not very magic…

  16. Bargain Hunte

    you can have a look at http://www.topukbargains.com, much better than any of these and easy to use

  17. Miss Voucher code

    The site looks much better now,