Piece Brewery & Pizzeria Analysis

URL: http://www.piecechicago.com/flash/index.html

Piece Brewery's website is relatively small (12 pages only, plus 2 outside sites for ordering pizza and ordering gear), and so does not include elements like a search, an index, or pathway pages.


This page’s organization scheme relies mostly on topical divisions, namely those reflected in the primary top navigation: events, daily specials, pizza, beer, photo gallery, about us, parties. Most of the website’s content fits naturally within this hierarchy and these topics. Additional topics on the homepage include the feature links at the very top-right of the page (home, contact, directions, links), and in a few of the portal images on the home pages (the rotating feature flash block, Piece gift cards, The Piece Online Store). Events, both on the homepage and their own page, are listed chronologically – intuitive, but notably ordered to not only feature most popular events. The two task-based organization structures used on the homepage are “Order Online Here” and “Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.”

Labeling Systems

Piece Brewery & Pizzeria does not use a great deal of contextual links in their site. Primarily, the labeling can be seen in their navigation systems. The pizzeria has chosen a very straight-forward approach on their navigation labels: opting for the basic “pizza” label over the common “menu” label prevalent in many restaurants. There are, however, three links that may give users pause when determining what information lies behind them. “Events” could refer to live musical acts brought into piece brewery, or to events in the community that Piece Brewery participates in (such as a beer festival or brewing competition), or even to menu specials and drink items. “Daily Specials” is similarly vague, not apparently referring to food or drinks or other types of specials. The last term that may cause some confusion is “Parties,” which could refer to Piece Brewery’s willingness to host / contribute to parties, or that Piece Brewery throws its own parties.

Navigation Systems

The navigation for the site largely relies on the primary global system as mentioned in the Organization portion of this overview. There exists one local navigation structure under the "pizza" navigation label, including "pizza, appetizers, salad, dessert, and lunch." Piece Brewery's website is small enough that it doesn't utilize several embedded navigation structures. There is also neither a sitemap nor a site index.

Homepage Functions Test

1 Identifying the site

Piece Brewery establishes its brand quickly and in multiple locations on the homepage. The main logo is in the standard left-top portion of the homepage, but it also appears in four other places on the site. On the top right-hand corner, the words "Piece Brewery & Pizzeria" identify immediately what the purpose of the business is.

2 Setting the tone

The primarily-black appearance of this website appropriately places the business as a night-life type of restaurant. The website is professional to show that the business isn't a hole-in-the-wall bar, but balances this tone with its use of a more nontraditional font to show that it is still casual and fun.

3 Getting a sense

  • Instantly clear? Yes. The text "Piece Brewery & Pizzeria" establishes immediately what type of business the website is for.
  • Mostly links & short descriptions? Yes. Links go to most tasks that users would want out of a restaurant / bar: contact information, directions, events, menu. There are a few short descriptions, mostly occurring on the rotating flash block (e.g. "Karaoke every Thursday 10 p.m.").

4 Starting key tasks

Related to the links on the homepage are the tasks that users would like to complete. Perhaps they are looking for what menu options there are ("Pizza" on the main navigation), whether there are any events going down that night (listed directly on the homepage), or just trying to figure out how to get there ("Directions" on the top-right global navigation): all of these tasks are accessible in one or less click from the homepage.

There is no search option on the website, but users likely do not need one because of its small size.

5 Sending on the right way

  • Using visitors' words? Yes. "Pizza" and "Beer" are pretty straightforward vocabulary for the type of users interested in this site.
  • No hesitation about which words to click on? Mostly. The two links that may give a user pause would be "Daily Specials" and "Parties." If a user was looking for food specials, s/he may not know whether to click on "Pizza" or "Daily Specials." Similarly, drink specials could be listed under "Drinks" or "Daily Specials." The term "Parties" is mildly confusing as well, because you don't know if they mean making reservations for large parties of people, hosting parties at Piece Brewery, or parties that Piece Brewery throws. Users may attempt to search the site a bit longer to determine whether these navigation items suite their needs or not.