Monday, April 27, 2015

Rado: “About Us” Evaluation by Corporate

The Rado brand launched its first collection of watches in 1957, but the company history goes back to Schlup & Co., who had been producing watch movements in Lengnau, Switzerland, since 1917. Rado’s forte is the use of sophisticated materials such as high-tech ceramics: they produced the first scratch-proof watches. Today the company, still headquartered in Lengnau, has some 470 employees and is part of the Swatch Group. The main About Us page appears when you click “About Rado” in the top menu.


Products/Services: D
The big problem with the Rado About Us page is obvious from its opening lines: “2010s. 2013 - Rado further develops its use of ultra-light high-tech ceramic, presenting the DiaMaster RHW1 in ‘old bronze’ coloured Si3N4 TiN. ...” This is the page that appears when you click “About Rado” in the top menu, but there’s no summary of the company: what it produces, where it’s located (if you’re a Swiss company making watches, surely location matters!), what market its products are aimed at. Our Commandment 1 of About Us pages is, “Know thy audience.” The first About Us page ought to be self-sufficient. Rado’s is not.

Rado has excellent photos ... on two completely different timelines, one of which counts backward, the other forward. The one on the main About Us page is, as we said above, so abstruse that a layman is unlikely to understand it. The Design Milestones timeline (under About Rado / Rado & Design) works forward from 1958, describing specific watches and what made each innovative. Its text is easier to grasp, but needs work. For example, we’re told that the 1981 Anatom was the first Rado watch “that exhibits a curved ergonomic form in order to “[this quotation is never closed] embrace the wrist with anatomical perfection. The design of the Anatom dial is reduced to keep its minimalism ...”

For a Swiss watchmaker not to be precise plays havoc with our preconceptions. Our Commandment 9 of About Us pages is, “Worship clarity.” If you’re translating web pages for an international audience, have them proofed by someone fluent in the language.

Personality: D
The Rado People page is elegantly laid out. But we expected it to list the company’s management; instead, it talks about the celebrities who wear Rado watches. There’s precious little elsewhere on the site about Rado’s corporate history. Although the timeline on the main About Us page goes back to 1917 (the founding of Schlup & Co. clockwork factory in Lengnau), we’ve been unable to discover on the Rado site what the relationship is between Schlup & Co. and Rado.

Accessibility: C
The Contact Us page (reached via a link at the end of the footer, under “Keep in Touch”) has a mailing address, phone number, and an online form. This is minimal but acceptable.

Always start your About Us page with a brief summary of your company, geared to your target audience. If you’re going to mention your history (and you should!), be sure to give some details that make it impressive.

Does your Web site’s “About Us” section accurately convey your organization’s history and capabilities? Every two weeks we evaluate one example, grading it in three areas that are key to potential customers: Personality (Who are you?), Products/Services (What can you do for us?), and Accessibility (How can we reach you?). To talk about your About Us page, contact us!
Today’s example was chosen at random; has no ties to this company.