• About Us
  • Blog
  • Basket
  • Account
  • Sign In


Mobile Web Review: crabtree-evelyn.co.uk -  From Selling Soap to Mobile Holistic Care

Published on Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Mobile Web Review: crabtree-evelyn.co.uk - From Selling Soap to Mobile Holistic Care

Crabtree & Evelyn have recently launched a new mobile website. Upon visiting their main website it will detect mobile device users and automatically redirect them to the new mobile version. Today I take a look at this new mobile web offering.

Crabtree & Evelyn are an American retailer of body and home products with a range of stores across the globe. Originally founded in 1972, their first retail store opened five years later in 1977 selling a range of soaps. The company name is apparently inspired by the 17th Century renaissance Englishman John Evelyn. They claim over 160 natural botanical ingredients are used in their skin care products.


Having now tried the website on a variety of devices I can say that it has been an enjoyable experience. Included in the header is a good sized search bar and three interface controls; sign in, find a store and the shopping basket. Unfortunately these being textual links rather than icons, combined with being situated closely above the search bar means it's not so easy to operate these interface elements via thumb touch.

Crabtree & Evelyn headerCrabtree & Evelyn product list


Situated directly below the main header are two further links for the account and contact us. I feel these links are nicely positioned, highly visible and easy to operate. Underneath this is a series of four product advertisements which scroll natively and can be manually manipulated via a sliding touch. These pictures look nice and the scrolling is smooth even on devices with lower processing power.

I really didn’t experience any issues with the usability of the site beyond some minor niggles with a few of the text based links being too close to other interface elements. All in all I was happy with the mobile usability experience they offered and I would recommend the site to a friend .

Score: 4.4/5


Upon inspection the page weight of the Crabtree & Evelyn mobile website isn’t too bad at 598KB. Testing with the Chrome developer tools on a desktop gave it a loading speed of 1.03 seconds, this is almost spot on the #goldensecond. Although it does still have a sizeable page weight, more than twice what we would consider excellent.  In monetary cost it would equate to a little over 2.3p for a single page view on Vodafones tarrifs.

Score: 4.2/5

Learn How To Test Your Website


My first impression is that the company name takes up a large amount of screen real estate; this is ok on larger phones and tablets but uses precious space on smaller screens. Aside from this I thought the design looks smooth, it differs quite extensively from its desktop counterpart but is consistent with other mobile retail sites. Existing users will adapt easily and it’s also intuitive for new users. I personally prefer the desktop version due to the images and icon based links which are healthy for any site selling aesthetic products.

Crabtree & Evelyn product typesCrabtree & Evelyn product details

Negative aspects I found include a distinct lack of icons throughout the site; instead they have opted for text links which I think is perhaps a little lazy. The colours are sharp and bright and kept mostly to the blue and white theme of the company; unfortunately this doesn't lend itself well to battery consumption. I don’t have any hard and fast numbers other than to say browsing the site consumed half of my phone battery in less than an hour.

In comparison to the desktop version the horizontal product menu has been converted to a vertical display now positioned under the scrolling image. Although this approach is nothing original it does work well for smaller screens, which is why many other sites have opted for this method. Under each product heading is a breakdown of categories. These lead to a list of products which are nicely presented, accompanied with well-spaced filter and sorting options. A further touch will take you to a detailed product page with most of the functionality of the desktop version intact.

Score 4/5


The site looks best on average size phones of around 4-4.5” or so, as screen size deviates further away from this middle ground the design begins to lose some appeal. My favourite area of the design is the individual product pages, the layout of information and purchase options were very pleasant to view. My least favourite part is its unoriginal design, although this isn't necessarily a bad thing as it does performs its intended job admirably.

Crabtree & Evelyn product typesCrabtree & Evelyn product details

Performance was decent, almost breaking into the #goldensecond. The site serves only 28 element requests which is good, the main source of page weight comes from the rotating banner. I think with a few minor tweaks in this area they could gain an excellent score.

What Crabtree & Evelyn gained in usability and performance they lost in an average design. I understand that for a retail site the performance and usability are going to be paramount so I don’t begrudge their choices. On a personal level I feel that the site just lacked a spark of imagination, I don’t think I would be enticed to visit for any other reason than a functional purchase.

Final Score: 4.2/5

Request Free Trial

of 51Degrees.mobi Device Detection

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 51Degrees.mobi.

Comments (0)

Author: Edward

Categories: Opinion

Tags: Mobile , Web , Review



Other posts by Edward
Contact author



.NET 4G 51Degrees 5G Acer Adform Adtech Advertising Afilias Alcatel Amazon AMP Analysis Analytics Android Apache API Apple Asian Market ASP.NET Asus Blackberry Browser C C# Centro Chrome chromium Client hints Cloud CMS CPU CSS3 Data Data Blog Data File Daydream Design Detection Developers Device Device Data Device Detection Device Intelligence Device Models Device property DeviceAtlas Disney dmexco DotNetNuke Download ebay Ericsson Event Facebook Firefox Foundation Framework Galaxy git repositories Google Google Analytics Google Daydream GPU GSMA Guess HAProxy Hash Trie HTC HTML5 HTTP HTTP Headers Huawei Infinix Ingeniux Internet usage iOS iOS 13 ipad iPadOS iPhone iPhone 11 Java Javascript Kentico LG Liferay LTE m.dot Memory Memory leak Meta Data Microsoft Mobile Mobile Analysis Mobile Analytics Mobile Devices Mobile Marketing Mixer Motorola Mozilla MWC MWC 2017 MWC16 Native Apps NET New Release News Nexus NFC NGINX Nokia OnePlus 5 Opera Operating System Oppo Optimisation OS Patent Performance PHP Press Release Price Band programmatic Publishers Python Redirection Research Responsive Images Responsive web design RESS Review RTB RWD Safari Samsung Scala ScientiaMobile SEO Server Server-side optimisation Seznam.cz Sitecore Smart TV Smartphone Smartwatches Sony Swedish Beers Tablet Tencent Testing Tips Tutorial Umbraco Update User Agent User-Agent Valgrind Varnish Varnish Cache Video Vodafone VoLTE Web Web Apps Web content management Webtrekk White Paper Widgets WiFi Windows WURFL Xiaomi Xperia ZTE