I'm Just Going To Come Right Out And Say It...

Discussion in 'Suggestions & Feedback' started by DoctorOctoroc, Aug 6, 2018.

  1. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    I generally like steering away from design contests as it cheapens the industry - as a comparison, how often are there contests for auto repair, plumbing, electronics, medicine, management positions, etc in which a company asks a few dozen people to all work for free and one person gets a prize (usually not even an amount appropriate for the work being done by that person, let alone everyone involved) and the rest get nothing for their time and skill? This only happens in the design world because people think designing is as easy as running a few Photoshop filters or learning to use the line tool in Illustrator when it takes years of experience and immense skill to be a good, professional designer (as it does in any profession). This stigma lends itself to designs like the one we have now - a design contest would just have people hammering in submissions and putting minimal time into the concept behind it and leave Shapeways forced to choose one of them. I'm not sure how they came to the current design and the thought behind it but something tells me they weren't thinking of hobbyists and the consumer when they decided upon it.

    I certainly don't meant to imply that someone among us designers couldn't come up with something good (most of us would surely come up with something better than this new one) but what Shapeways should do (should have done) is pay an experienced and talented logo and web designer to work, through multiple revisions and meetings, to create a coherent brand and style that fits the company and a seamless UI experience that puts all the right information in all the right places. I don't see them having accomplished any of that with this overhaul.
  2. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    To be honest, I don't mind changes in workflow - what irks me is the complete lack of direction on the home page for buyers of our products. This is the bread and butter of Shapeways, I don't see how putting all the eggs in the 'attracting designers' basket is helping them make sales of 3d printed items. Are they hoping to draw in such a massive slew of designers who will purchase their own designs that they no longer need sales coming in from the marketplace?

    Again, I think they're shrugging off hobbyists who stock the shops (essentially, we all work for them for free and on top of that pay them to test print our own designs when we see fit) and trying to draw in more startups who will use Shapeways as a 3d printing service for their own prototyping and products. The future of 3d printing is going to be market-ready prints and Shapeways is jumping on that train early to set themselves up as the go to service for companies who will order large quantities of 3d printed parts for their own businesses, shutting out all of the hobby-driven designers that have been with them for the past decade.

    At least, that's my theory.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2018
  3. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    There, I fixed it...mostly.

  4. MrNibbles
    MrNibbles Well-Known Member
    I'm going to use this if I ever need to put a SW reference on a design in some hidden area. I don't see that SW in a circle being a viable alternative since it's not very 3D print compatible and SHAPEWAYS has similar issues and is very long. A continuous curved line like this should be more design rule friendly for both embossing and engraving. It's handy if you have prints from various services and need to be able to ID them. Feel free to use it yourself if you so desire.

    continuous SW.png
    Malwen likes this.
  5. Malwen
    Malwen Well-Known Member
    Please could someone change the colour of the number spot in the shopping cart so that it is the same shade of red as the logo? It really doesn't look good having two different shades of red at the top of the page! Screenshot_20180809-212237.png
  6. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    If they're going to change anything, they should change that horrendous logo. I get having the red 'push icon' that mimics smart phones for familiarity's sake but the logo makes no sense for the brand they've been building for the last decade.
  7. MrNibbles
    MrNibbles Well-Known Member
    Instead of the circle they could at least use the old star pattern or something close to that.
  8. MitchellJetten
    MitchellJetten Shapeways Employee CS Team
    Ha, i've forwarded the feedback regarding the color difference between the new brand colors and the shopping cart :D
  9. LoveAndShapes
    LoveAndShapes Well-Known Member
    Never saw that.. What is it, all models recently offered for sale?
  10. ianm42
    ianm42 Member
    The Feed used to show all broadcast messages from designers you are 'Following', but now it looks like it is just everything, which is not much use.

    skyfire likes this.
  11. bluelinegecko
    bluelinegecko Well-Known Member
    I'm not a fan at all of the new logo, but honestly that is the company's prerogative and I don't really care about it that deeply.

    The new site design is terrible though. The font, layout, etc. One of the things I loved the most about Shapeways in the early days was the these forums, and the community that developed on this site around the relatively new industry of 3D printing. Myself and others actually considered the Shapeways forums to be a primary destination to visit. The "Feature This", "3D modelers needed" and "My order arrived" forums were great daily visits to connect with clients, or see exciting designs users were coming up with. The latest unwelcome site change pretty much shows how little Shapeways values the community forums. As like many have already pointed out there is no direct link to find the forums on the main page except for a tiny indiscreet link under the "Support" heading at the bottom of the page. Or by clicking on the small and not that readily apparent "explore" link on the top right of the screen. No new users are going to find that easily. If you ask me the main page ought to have 4 headings instead of 3; Design, Make, Sell, and one for a link to the forums and/or tutorials. It could be titled Explore/Learn More/Connect/Forums/Community/or whatever.

    Shapeways has been criticized more times than I can remember for their unnecessary and unwelcome site changes, questionable priorities, lack of user appreciation, and refusal to solicit or accommodate user feedback. Constant changes that result in such poor feedback from one's users is a sure sign that the company lacks any real direction or vision. Flat out refusal to reverse course also shows your users you don't value their feedback. "New Coke" sucked. Coca-Cola admitted it in the mid-80s and history shows reversing course was the right thing to do. The weren't the first company to do it and wont be the last.

    Honestly I wish Shapeways would revert a lot of the site organization back to how it appeared in the early days (2011ish). Someday a real competitor is going to appear and Shapeways is going to get crushed overnight if they don't start listening to their community. Kind of like what Facebook did to Myspace.
  12. bluelinegecko
    bluelinegecko Well-Known Member
    ThatRobHuman likes this.
  13. Echoco
    Echoco Well-Known Member
    Had a while to think as well as read other comments on here and I think the problem with the logo is it's too different to the old one. It hold no relation to the old Shapeways brand. Maybe Shapeways is trying to rebrand itself, I don't know.

    The comment about using the old star instead of the circle really hit it spot on how the new has no continuity to the old.
  14. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    That's the primary complaint - aesthetics may be subjective but the rebrand (that's what it is) shows the company going in a completely new direction (and by new, I mean the same direction as every other online 3d printing service) - one that seems to prioritize firms, businesses and startups over the marketplace and community interaction that built this company up over the past decade. This is the real reason that the new logo and layout of the site are such a sore spot, especially for long time users. It hails a new era in which we're being cast aside for a new target demographic is being drawn in to replace us.

    To reiterate, this isn't a reaction to a different way to conduct business as usual - it's a reaction to the clear sign that these changes are going to run our shops into the ground, phase out the marketplace, and render years (a decade, for some of us) of modeling, shopkeeping, networking, marketing and customer interaction completely moot.

    If that's really the direction that Shapeways wants to go, then they're doing it right, but the majority of the current designers, shop owners and customers on here won't be around long if this is the case.
  15. crashtestdummy
    crashtestdummy Well-Known Member
    Also a key in business is not to get rid of your old customers before you get new ones, otherwise you have nether.
  16. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    Indeed. I suspect that the silence from SW on the topic is due in part to trying to avoid the former.
    czhunter and FerretDesigns like this.
  17. Model_Monkey
    Model_Monkey Well-Known Member
    Received this message from a customer today:

    "I love your products but your website is awful...Can t even edit my cart or check out....its probably me, but I don t find it very user friendly.

    FerretDesigns likes this.
  18. sirenwerks
    sirenwerks Member
    As a customer, I can't use the feed anymore. It used to be my wire to designers I liked, now it seems to be a backwater for everything SW thinks I might want. And, believe me, SW's logarithm wealth of crap I don't care about is annoying. Large scale model car parts, military miniatures, and fantasy gaming junk; when all I search for is models related to 1:160 model railroading. I'm not the sort of consumer that will branch out because stuff exists, I'll just stop shopping SW and its shops when the annoyance becomes to, well, annoying. Sooner rather than later, it's looking like.
  19. FerretDesigns
    FerretDesigns Well-Known Member
    I found even with the old SW set up, if I was ordering anything on the mobile you could not edit cart unless you had your phone in a landscape orientation. It doesn't have an option for removing items or changing quantities in portrait!
    Model_Monkey likes this.
  20. crashtestdummy
    crashtestdummy Well-Known Member
    Yet the same crowd that is most likely to see the pricing and figure out they can do the printing themselves at lower cost if they need to do lots of prints so in the end they are chasing a market that doen't really want or need their product. Finally customers don't want pricing volatility, particularly with sudden increases and without a long term contract they are more likely to bail than a shop owner for lower prices should another company offer them.