PayPal is the 500 lb gorilla in the online payment world. Some people love them. Some hate them. However, one thing almost everyone who visited their site would tell you is that it looked like it was designed in the early 2000′s, which is Internet equivalent of a movie that was created in the 1950′s.
Here’s what it used to look like:
Today they’ve brought their home page and a couple other pages of their site into 2012. Here’s the new look:
A couple things you should notice about their new design:
- They have adopted the billboard layout that we’ve been touting for a while. This consists of a logo & navigation at the top, billboard with action item in the middle, interest areas that take you to the most important parts of your site right below it and ends with a thin or fat footer. See examples at StratoCommunications.com, Tricision.com and others.
- In addition to adopting the billboard website layout, their billboard accommodates wide screen monitors. The key rational for this is that monitor sizes and resolutions are climbing. Instead of wasting real estate on the left and right of a site, you can use it appropriately with a larger billboard that gives you a wow feeling when you see the beautiful photograph in all it’s glory.
There are a few things about the site that I would have done differently:
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- The call to action is outside the normal flow of the eye. I would have moved that box to be right underneath the headline and subheadline.
- The Personal / Business tabs at the very top are sort of getting lost up there. I would have added an icon or a color or something to bring a bit more attention to it.
- As beautiful as the photograph is in the billboard, it doesn’t quiet communicate much. Your billboard should overtly communicate a message that is directly related to your unique value proposition. I’m going to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume PayPal’s team will be updating the billboard to be more on message in the near future.
Overall, it’s a very welcome redesign. I hope they don’t stop with just the home page but instead will roll out the design to their entire application.