Birdwatching
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Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:17 am

I'm sure 95% of you have noticed this: Compared to all other LCC's web sites, Ryanair's looks like it's made by a 13 year old middle school student.

Not only for their design, but also for their contents, navegability and foreign-language content. (The latter is even worse than the others: Translations are horrible)

The internet is the most important sales platform for LCCs.

1) Is it really THAT expensive to maintain a halfway decent web presence?

2) Do they do this on purpose, so that it "looks cheap" and goes in line with their marketing strategy?

Soren  santahat 
All the things you probably hate about travelling are warm reminders that I'm home
 
ehho
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:21 am

I believe there have been threads on this before... Something to do with FR management refusing an expensive offer from an established IT firm, and hiring a few IT college students to do the job for a few hundred quid...
"Get your facts first. Then you may distort them as much as you please" -- Mark Twain
 
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shamrock350
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:25 am

Quoting Birdwatching (Thread starter):
I'm sure 95% of you have noticed this: Compared to all other LCC's web sites, Ryanair's looks like it's made by a 13 year old middle school student.

Have you seen Aer Lingus' website? Big grin
Ryanair's website works and does a good job. I am not a big fan of Ryanair and I think the website is horrible but if its easy to book cheap flights on it, Im sure people dont care what it looks like.
 
Birdwatching
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:28 am

Quoting EHHO (Reply 1):
and hiring a few IT college students to do the job for a few hundred quid...

The point is: IT college students would actually make a good-looking web site. It takes an expensive web design firm to imitate the crappy early 90's web sites.

Soren  santahat 
All the things you probably hate about travelling are warm reminders that I'm home
 
CRJ900
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:31 am

I think they do it on purpose - so that a.nutters and their peers simply must visit their site and see what the fuss is about, and while they are there they spot a cheap ticket and end up making a booking - and FR makes more money...  Smile

FR know what they are doing - that's why they're so successful...
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LeonB1985
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:50 am

There was a very very similar post not long ago at all...

It might not win any design awards, but it does the job - look at how many people book online with FR! It's not the way I'd design it, but I've been able to find what I needed in the past, so...  eyepopping 
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prebennorholm
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:53 am

The critics are simply wrong. Ryanair.com is easy to use, efficient and fast.

They serve 20 languages. Who else does that? I tried Danish, and it was flawless language.

I found one bug. In the destination pull down menu the destinations are sorted by the ICAO code, not the city name. For instance Esbjerg (EBJ) is in front of Edinburgh (EDI). And St. Etienne (EBU) is in between those two. Confusing.

Few people will, however, notice that. When you select language, then the main part of the site immediately presents a menu with relevant roundtrip flights from your own country plus very neighbor airports. So few people will ever use that pull down menu.

Ryanair.com is no fancy showpiece, but an efficient and versatile tool.
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kaitak
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 5:56 am

Exactly, LeonB1985, that's the key: it does the job. It only needs to provide customers with the ability to buy its products. It does that well; I've used it many times.

When you say "sub-standard", what is the standard? To me, being able to buy tickets on it quickly and conveniently is the standard and to me, it meets that standard handsomely.
 
LeonB1985
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 6:01 am

Quoting Kaitak (Reply 7):
Exactly, LeonB1985, that's the key: it does the job. It only needs to provide customers with the ability to buy its products. It does that well; I've used it many times.

When you say "sub-standard", what is the standard? To me, being able to buy tickets on it quickly and conveniently is the standard and to me, it meets that standard handsomely.

Also, the site is no more difficult to navigate than other airline sites, in my view. People just don't like the styling - it's loud, brash, cheap and cheerful (I guess). Ryanair don't need to win design awards. If people continue to successfully book flights on their website (and people will), there is no point in changing it. In fact, I'd say it's pretty clear and easy to use, really. I can see pretty much everywhere I'd need to get to on their site when it first loads in my browser!

People general don't need to be enticed to buy a flight on FR's flight. If they are visiting the site anyway, and the price/destination is right, they'll book it, in the majority of cases.

[Edited 2006-01-25 22:02:35]
From the construction site that is better-known as London Heathrow Airport
 
Rottamo
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 6:03 am

Quoting Prebennorholm (Reply 6):
The critics are simply wrong. Ryanair.com is easy to use, efficient and fast.

I disagree. There used to be very handy 'find cheapest fares tool'. I can't find it anymore. When I want to travel I am usually quite flexible and willing to change days if I can save money. Like when doing weekend holiday I can choose another weekend if I can save £50. Ryanair's website is not very well suited for that any more. You can get price for the ticket only for one day.

Skyeurope is better. You get table of fares where there is at least 7 departure days and 7 arrival days. Changing layout should not cost more that £1000 and college student could do it. In web page design you can simply copy working solutions from other airlines -> should be cheap.


Yours,

Rottamo
 
Joost
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 6:04 am

It's all on purpose, just like companies like ALDI and Mediamarkt. They have a corporate image that must look as if it is the cheapest available. People need to see cheap cheap cheap everywhere; in Words, in images, in colors. And it works. The title of the page: Ryanair.com FLY CHEAPER. Banner ad "Fly cheaper to France" (or Italy, on the Dutch version). Cheap cheap cheap cheap cheap.

I think the story that it has been designed by some students for a few hundered quid is an urban legend. I'm running a web-developing company for a few years now, and can tell you: that website, including the whole booking and reservation system, is that complex, it is just impossible to make it for a few hundred or even a few thousand euros. Supposing their CRS as used by the phone desk would already totally accept XML (or any other comparable protocol), you're still paying a 5-digit number.

The design fits the corporate and brand image. As said, it does it perfectly.
 
Thomas_Jaeger
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 6:33 am

The res system is provided by Navitaire and does not necessarily have a lot to do with the website as such.
Swiss aviation news junkie living all over the place
 
Jaspike
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 6:50 am

I like the site. Looking at other some other sites - yes they look modern etc. but they're not always as simple to use.

Quoting Rottamo (Reply 9):
I disagree. There used to be very handy 'find cheapest fares tool'. I can't find it anymore.

This is a decent alternative:
http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/flightchecker/

Tom
 
Joost
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 6:59 am

Quoting Thomas_Jaeger (Reply 11):
The res system is provided by Navitaire and does not necessarily have a lot to do with the website as such.

I already thought something like that. I assume they have a good XML interface. Still actually connecting it is pretty complex. Not really difficult or extraordinary, but you have to think good about it before starting  Smile
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 7:10 am

My God, this is a geeky thread.  

For me, I just need something which is:

1) Easy/simple-to-use/navigate through
2) Error-fee
3) Pleasing to the eye
4) Quick to load - so not full of annoying images or graphics

For me, FR's website is fine for the purpose - I can book tickets in less than 5 minutes.

The main disavantage for me - and it never used to be a problem - is the 'select a passenger' bit. It always had a default of 1 adult. Now, I select routing, dates, etc., then get the darn 'select a passenger' box up, because the default doesn't exist now.

Overall, I'll give it 7/10 based on its expectations and my expectations.

[Edited 2006-01-25 23:12:29]
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
Rottamo
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RE: Ryanair Website: Why So Sub-Standard?

Thu Jan 26, 2006 8:19 am

I thought this issue a little bit more and I guess that it is possible that they have server load problems and because of that they have removed tool I am missing. Tool like that can generate a lot queries to database if it is not well done. Removing tool is temporary fix and gives you time to buy more servers or do changes to current system.

Or May be something related to this new web booking. This requires changes to web pages and because of that they have made short term changes.

Just guessing and hoping that tool will return to their pages.

Rottamo

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