Reflection Point: Dominos
Usability, Accessibility, and Ethics
After being stuck in the house for a few days due to hurricane Harvey (thank God we’re okay) my family and I had a craving for some Dominos pizza. The location we normally buy from is easy to order from, but this time things were not exactly as easy.
This brings me to the issue of usability. In general the online ordering process is fairly simple to learn, showing which step you are on with a clear list of options to choose from. It is also memorable, in that the order of the process is the same every time allowing the user to know what to expect.
Where things break down is in the efficiency department. I find myself having to click more than necessary to cancel an upsell promotion or to find a coupon.
The worst is that on the mobile version, the “add to cart” button is only on the top of the page and does not scroll to the bottom. So when you’re done picking toppings, there is no “add to cart” button at the bottom of the page, only a “back” button causing the user to scroll all the way back up.
In terms of errors, I don’t usually have problems with the site, but due to the hurricane, I wasn’t able to order online. The store was open and online ordering was available, but for some reason it didn’t work. The error message also didn’t give any information except to call the store. So then I called and asked if I could order for pick up and they said that I would have to pay by credit card on the phone. Instead I tried to do the same online by paying with a credit card but it still didn’t work. So I just called again and paid by phone. It turns out that they only had certain crusts and toppings available. If only the error message would have said that…
I’ve learned a lot from the lesson on accessibility, but sadly I’ve never been mindful of these issues up until now or didn’t think it was absolutely necessary. One of the main points was that a website needed to be used by only the keyboard, so I decided to test the Dominos site.
At first glance the homepage worked well, but I noticed that the top two buttons for “Delivery” and “Carryout” would never get selected, which seems odd since the main point of the site is to order pizza online.
Using the keyboard is actually impossible on the pizza builder since tabbing through the page will go through all the links on the hidden page underneath and never go through the options of the pizza builder.
The pizza builder also has multiple columns which would make the user experience of someone using a screen magnifier much more difficult to navigate, especially with the “next step” button being on the top right of the options instead of at the bottom of the section.
In general Dominos doesn’t really do anything overtly unethical, but there are some things that make me scratch my head. One example is that Parmesan Bread Bites don’t come included with a little cup of sauce, while Parmesan Bread Twists come with one. An extra cup of sauce costs $0.46. There were a couple times where I paid for the sauce, but they forgot to give it to me when I picked it up. By the time I got home and checked I was stuck without sauce. It is also not worth going all the way back to the store to get a cup of sauce. It’s not the end of the world or the crime of the century, it may just be negligence or poor process. Either way a customer should receive what they pay for.
Although what I wrote is mostly negative, oddly enough I still buy Dominos pizza. I still enjoy the pizza, even if the entire experience isn’t always amazing, and I’ll most likely continue being a customer in the future.