Review – Busy Bees Website

Today I will be reviewing the Busy Bees Child Care Centre website, which can be found HERE.

BB home page

Screenshot of the Busy Bees home page (“Busy bees”)

This website is designed to give parents and potential customers an overview of what Busy Bees is all about. The page is laid out in a very straight-forward manner, and the navigational toolbar on the left-hand side of the screen outlines the content of the website.

The textual content of the site is very professional, and provides information about the use of play-based learning in the centre, as well as the attempts that the centre is making to stimulate children in various aspects of their development (“Busy bees”).

BB navigation tool

Screenshot of navigation tool (“Busy bees”)

 

Navigating the website is actually quite easy, thanks to the clear navigational toolbar at the left of the screen. This is what Tuck (2003) would describe as a traditional way of presenting screen navigation, which is functional and serves its purpose. The pages that are linked to include services provided, a calendar of events, and potential employment opportunities. Navigating through the site was easy enough, although it was difficult to ascertain who I could specifically contact for information, though a phone number and email contact information was presented.

 

A number of images border the site, though many of them are stretched or squished in a way that distorts them and makes them seem less professional. The presence of the images, though squished, do still add a visual component that is a welcome break to a text-only site. There is also a slideshow that contains images of the play areas in the centre, and provides both parents and potential consumers the ability to visualize where their children will be spending their day.

bb squished pics

Sample squished images from the Busy Bees website (“Busy bees”)

Unfortunately, this site does contain an image far more irritating than some squished images. On one of the pages, outlining the services which the centre provides, an image of what appears to be a bee flying backwards with one eye half open that constantly scrolls across the screen from left to right, and when it reaches the right side, disappears ad reappears on the left side to begin its migration anew. This bee is annoying, and I have yet discovered a way to make it cease it’s incessant voyage to the right side of my screen. As it travels, it blocks the text which makes it difficult for the viewer to read, which is the purpose for the page to exist in the first place. Tuck (2003) advises web designers to keep things simple, and not over-complicate a site with unnecessary and irritating distractions.

BB annoying bee

The annoying bee mid flight, blocking the text (“Busy bees”)

Ultimately, this site does a good job of not only making necessary information available, but also being user friendly regarding the navigation of the site, as well as the ability to contact the centre wither by phone or email. I would recommend that the next update of the site remove the annoying bee, or at least provide viewer with the choice to view the bee or not, as well as improving the formatting of the images used throughout the site, ensuring that the professionalism is not compromised by said images.

References:

Busy bees child care centre. (n.d.). Retrieved on December 11th from http://www.busybeesbrampton.com/index.htm

Tuck, M. (2003). Practical web design – fundamentals of web design. Retrieved on December 11th from http://articles.sitepoint.com/print/fundamentals-web-design

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