Final Grade

B
Mobile Responsiveness 95%
Page Speed 70%
Design Aesthetics 92%
Do you have experience working with Charles Communications? Do they deserve to be on the top of the Best Web Design Companies list? What do you think of Charles Communications? Leave a comment below.

Since it initially launched over two years ago, Kazzit has quickly become the most comprehensive wine tourism database in the world. It allows wine drinkers to easily search for wine-tasting opportunities by region or varietal with over 10,000 locations worldwide. Recently, Charles Communications helped Kazzit with launching its redesigned website to take their service to the next level. The result is a fresh coat of paint, a unique online experience, and a transformation that makes an already user-friendly experience even easier.

Charles Communications specializes in providing marketing and public relations services to the wine industry. Their experience made them the natural choice to revamp Kazzit’s online presence. They handled the transition admirably, using a simple color scheme and easy navigation to let the function of the service stand tall. Above the fold on the front page, a simple 4-image slider goes through a basic list of offerings from Kazzit, while an elegant top menu and search bar site directly above. You have the option to search in general terms or by region specifically – a feature welcomed to those who already know where they will be vacationing.

The rest of the front page plainly lays out events, testimonials, and featured wineries – a bit of welcome promotional material that gives the user a feel for important aspects of the database. While the various elements are organized well, there is a distinct lack of visual polish one might expect from such a well-regarded company. There is nothing glaringly wrong here, but nothing really blows you away either. In general the site is void of subtle experiential flairs that have become commonplace in the modern web.

I did a test search for “Napa Valley,” which took me to a page with a wealth of information regarding the top wineries in that area. Clicking into a specific winery opened up even more content including events and services provided, as well as a note from the winemaker about the uniqueness of their product. Charles Communications has done well to show relevant content with crisp clarity and hierarchy, making viewing aesthetically pleasing as well as informative.

Mobile-Friendly Test

In general, the site is mobile-friendly in every way you’d expect from a modern website redesign. There are a few funny font issues, like heading text wrapping where it probably should be shrinking. Searching and finding wineries is just as easy as using the web version, and should once again be commended for clarity and organization.

Speed Test

Not the best performance from Kazzit. The speed test showed particularly bad results for optimization of images. We did notice a bit of slow down as we viewed the site, but it was nothing to bark home about. In general, for a site with this much content and this large a database, things ran rather smoothly. That said, not great results.

Verdict

Even with poor speed test scores, this redesign from Charles Communications did everything it set out to do. The wine-tourism service is easier to use than ever, and with a slick new coat of paint to go with an already stellar customer oriented experience, people will continue to come back to Kazzit. The site is a delight to navigate and has all the information wine tourists crave and it’s all in a single, tight, beautiful package.

kazzit_commentary

Final Grade

B
Mobile Responsiveness 95%
Page Speed 70%
Design Aesthetics 92%
Do you have experience working with Charles Communications? Do they deserve to be on the top of the Best Web Design Companies list? What do you think of Charles Communications? Leave a comment below.