If you’re going to go to the expense of creating a Website, you
need to do a brilliant one - otherwise there’s not much point. The
monthly women’s magazine, Cosmopolitan, clearly does not share this view
as it has got a computer studies student to come in on work experience
to create its Website.
Despite the fact that it took me 20 minutes to download it, I was still
optimistic. Considering the magazine is viewed by most women as a
’must-have’ every month, its Website has little chance of attracting
those readers to the Internet.
The graphics were fairly standard and the picture desk must have been on
overtime to dig out recent stock pictures of designer shows. Even when I
pressed my nose to the screen I couldn’t see whether the belt on one of
the models was brown or black - and these things certainly do
But it wasn’t all bad. I did laugh at the feature on outfits for Cherie
Booth QC and Norma Major. Especially when Red or Dead suggested a little
flimsy dress with big knickers for Norma. Worth a look.
Another nice touch was the search engine that enables you to type in
your postcode and find out the nearest stockists. Cosmo could go one
better, though, and include phone numbers. It should expand the range of
shops covered and include bigger designers who are stocked in smaller
One thing in the site’s favour is that its design is identical to the
magazine. If that’s the idea, they should give the work experience kid
the job. However, I’d also like to see real-time video being used,
perhaps some footage from catwalk shows.
A Website should offer magazines a chance to showcase their product in a
TV-like format. Cosmo’s site is a nice attempt at embracing the
technical revolution, but I really don’t think a site telling you the
nearest store stocking Gucci belts is going to go down a storm.