SWOT Analysis: Beauty Edition Rachell Brown – J333
The Beauty Department vs. Total Beauty thebeautydepartment.com totalbeauty.com
STRENGTHS The Beauty Department Overall, The Beauty Department (TBD) has various advantages. Firstly, the design of the website is much cleaner and easier to navigate – I also feel that the aesthetic is more fitting to the theme. Also, the way that the articles are designed on TBD are more appealing; the use of visuals for tutorials and reviews draws in more attention. However, Total Beauty (TB) has an advantage within the community of the site because readers are able to interact with one another on a message board. • Tutorials • The design of the articles • The layout of the website Total Beauty • Community section • Total Beauty shop with items featured in articles and reviews • Beauty articles and lists comparing products
WEAKNESS The Beauty Department Total Beauty • Photos • Overall site aesthetic • Clarity of Hair Tutorials • User interaction There were a few weaknesses in each blog. First, with TBD, I found that the clarity on tutorials (specifically hair tutorials) was lacking, which makes it difficult for the tutorial to do its function. I also found that the opportunity for user interaction is seriously lacking which can limit interest and involvement. For TB I found that most of the pictures are just random fillers – a lot of articles don’t feature original pictures for that article, and a lot of pictures are used multiple times for varying topics. Additionally, the design of the site is really crowded and overwhelming – it doesn’t feel girly or welcoming like most beauty sites.
OPPORTUNITIES The Beauty Department Each site has some opportunities it is missing out on. TBD is missing out on reader interaction and contribution to the site, as well as a representation of an “average” girl. For example, the site was founded by MTV star Lauren Conrad and her makeup artist, and all of the contributors are professionals; there is no representation of an average, untrained girl. While TB is missing out on DIY and tutorials, which is what most girls visit beauty sites for. • Reader interaction • Representation of a “normal” girl Total Beauty • DIY and tutorials
THREATS The Beauty Department Total Beauty • The Beauty Department • www.martinisandmascara.com • www.pixiwoo.com • Total Beauty • www.maskcara.com • www.amodelrecommends.com Ultimately, both sites are each others biggest threats because TBD and TB cater to the same audience. However, there are still other blogs out there that offer things that TBD and TB don’t, which make them competition. For example, MaskCARAand A Model Recommends are main competitors for TBD because the authors are also professionals within the industry and feature some similar items, like tutorials and the lack of reader interaction. Martinis and Mascara and PixiWoo are threats to TB because they feature the same review-style formatting and also take users’ needs into consideration. All of these blogs are popular within the beauty community, which I feel makes them all competitors naturally.
BEAUTY SITES OVERALL Overall, both The Beauty Department and Total Beauty differ in strengths and weaknesses. Personally, I feel that TBD does a better job at meeting readers’ needs – it also has less weaknesses than strengths. TBD – This site is the best option for tutorials and DIY; it also has the best overall aesthetic. However, it is missing reader input and a voice for the “average” girl. TB – This site is more interactive and features a few different types of articles. However, the site is cluttered and is lacking well-done tutorials.