Six years ago, Apple redesigned its website to, among other things, remove the dedicated “Store” section and integrate buying into each product section. Since my entire professional career has centred around web design, this intrigued me. The thinking behind this, presumably, was that the entire website could function as a store because that was basically how many visitors used it anyway: they wanted to buy a product, or they wanted information about a product they were thinking about buying. I thought it was ingenious.
But this direct approach compromised the presentation of some of the secondary and tertiary products. While every section of the then-new site featured an “Accessories” page, it often felt cumbersome to find some of Apple’s oddball products, which became particularly noticeable when HomePods and AirTags were launched. There was a lot more hunting around than was required in the iOS Apple Store app.
The Store page, launched yesterday, seems to fix the clunkiness of that previous redesign. You can tell it is important because it is the first menu item after the Apple logo. It also, unfortunately, makes liberal use of horizontal scrolling. It feels like a page that was laid out before the designer knew what would be in it. At least it again exists.