A small enhancement to our images on some landing pages was rolled out quietly a few weeks ago. On some of our larger images if you move your mouse over the image, the seemingly still image will start to play a video. Laurie Williams, the video product manager, and Daniel Lopez, a front-end developer, we're involved in this project and we hope they wow'ed you with this feature.
We've got videos! In fact we have over 50,000 product videos and continuing to shoot more. We've always had them but we've made it even more obvious that we do and made it even easier for you to access them. For products that currently have a video description on them, we've identified by a small play icon in the top corner of the product image. If you click the icon, it'll popup to the playing video but you can also access the typical multiview still shots of the product.
We create these short videos using real Zappos employees as models to give you an up close and personal look at our shoes, clothes and bags. If you haven't checked one out, you can see a typical example here:
Michael Gagliano, User Experience Practioner, and Dave Stevens, Front-End Developer, worked on this project and Laurie Williams, Video Product Manager, helped drive this project.
We've got videos! In fact we have over 50,000 product videos and continuing to shoot more. We've always had them but we've made it even more obvious that we do and made it even easier for you to access them. For products that currently have a video description on them, we've identified them by a small play icon in the top corner of the product image. If you click the icon, it'll popup to the playing video but you can still access the typical multiview still shots of the product.
We create these short videos using real Zappos employees as models to give you an up close and personal look at our shoes, clothes and bags. If you haven't checked one out, you can see a typical example here.
Michael Gagliano, User Experience Practitioner, and Dave Stevens, Front-End Developer, worked on this project and Laurie Williams, Video Product Manager, helped drive this project.
Here's a photo of Laurie, Michael and Dave (from left to right), our fearless video description icon trio!
The Scoop: Open bar, open bar, appetizers… Oh! And did we mention OPEN BAR!
Vegas Baby: Can you code at a bar? If yes, then you can code at Zappos!
We will be having 2 coding challenges – 30 minutes each – 25 people max in each challenge. You can only do one of the challenges. If you need headphones, bring ‘em. Oh, and a laptop - that’s kinda important! 1st coding challenge at 6:30pm 2nd coding challenge at 7:30pm
The coding challenge is the first screening step in our interview process for hiring software engineers at Zappos. The person who gets the correct answer first from each round will be fast-tracked to VEGAS BABY! Yep, the second step in our screening process is an in-person interview in Las Vegas at our offices. And as always when we fly folks in to spend the night in Vegas, tour our offices, and interview - expenses are on us! Sorry, any gambling is on you. ;)
You don’t have to do a coding challenge or be a software engineer to hang with us!! We love all you tech peeps indiscriminately. Come on down and have a drink already! And our CEO, Tony Hsieh, will be at the event! If you participate in the challenge and would like one, he’s happy to sign a copy of his book, “Delivering Happiness” for you.
Check out the new share widget on Zappos.com! The share widget allows you to share your favorite products on Zappos.com via Facebook, Twitter, and email. You can even post them on your blog! Jen from Zappos IP, Inc explains the new share widget. Check it out and comment below!
Rapid Order Lookie Lou is a great new feature on Zappos.com that allows you to quickly view the items from your orders on your account page. Brandon from Zappos IP, Inc. explains this awesome new feature. Take a look!
One of our biggest focuses this year is improving the findability and browseability of our site. With breadcrumb navigation links on the product page, we're re-introducing a navigation tool we had on our site for many years until we moved to the new Zeta* site a few years back. The basic idea is that when you hit a product page you'll have hierarchical navigation links to allow you to "back out" into broader related searches and categories. This is especially useful if the product page is the first page on your visit to Zappos and you would like to view the higher level category or brand that this product is part of.
Here's some screenshots and photos showing our breadcrumbs in action.
As you can see you'll now have a hierarchical view of how the product is classified with links to those departments. This also includes a link to the brand page of the product and the product name.
Stacey Eddy, Sr User Experience Architect and Dave Stevens, Front-End Developer, who both worked on this project are spotted here doting on the feature like proud parents.
Let us know what you think!
* Zappos terminology for "beta". Also, the Zeta site hasn't been in beta for a while now but internally we still call it that.
As we embark on another ambitious year for Zappos Technology, let's remember to play our part in moving forward one of the company's most powerful assets and competitive differentiators - OUR CULTURE. Moving our culture forward entails engaging with departments outside technology as much as engaging with teams inside the technology department. Our culture provides the platform for friendships across teams and departments which then enables seamless communication without the bureaucracy found in larger companies. I'm happy to share how Zappos Tech will be owning and driving various cultural events and projects in 2011 – your participation and engagement in these events would be welcomed!
1. The 8000M challenge – I made the mistake of telling Brent that I would actually do the 8000M challenge if he agreed to lead it – well, he's leading it and I will be doing the 8000M challenge. Hope to see many of you participate!
2. The Rube Goldberg Machine – Dave Fong will lead getting the company involved in the creation of a very fun Rube Goldberg machine!
3. The Pinewood Derby – Frank Zaffino and team are leading this and we expect this to be a fun event in March!
This is in addition to various cultural events like Hackathons, Tech Lunch n Learns, Minute to Win-its, the donut eating contests, the breakfast club for Finance, and more…
Additionally, tech will be enabling and/or driving various cultural projects including the evolution of the face game, the next versions of Wishez and moving the zepic hackathon project forward.
Let's continue to solidify technology's reputation as an incredible innovation, execution and operational team by leveraging our technical skills and our cultural platform to WOW and deliver happiness to everyone around us!!
Hurdling buildings and halting speeding locomotives is an average day in the life of SYS… the team is always “on point” when needed to handle incidents that arise through the normal course of business.
One such event developed on a normal, wintry day in Kentucky… slight breeze, chill in the air, and all systems were “go.” Out of nowhere, Verizon went down and the company was unable to produce shipping labels for cartons. Verizon, you see, provides the internet connection between Zappos and GTS (Amazon’s shipping solution). Bert Hooper, caped-crusader extraordinaire sprang into action, suggesting the team switch to the backup internet connection for SiteManager (Windstream). In an amazing feat that would have only been described by an ex-president as “Thwartin’ the evildoer’s doin’,” SYS worked simultaneously with Verizon to resolve the problem, and with Amazon, to setup a tunnel through Windstream to connect to GTS - in the event that Verizon couldn’t come back online. As was the case, Verizon didn’t come back up, and SYS moved forward with the Windstream workaround once the tunnel had been established.
Kudos and props go out to Sys and KYFC Ops for their collaboration in bringing a thoughtful and rapid solution to this dastardly situation. Not only was the team able to re-establish peace to the Kentucky quadrant, they saved the system from sure ruin. Though manual shipping stations and automated shipping lanes were affected, the efforts of all involved resulted in no missed paid or VIP orders - quite amazing given the outage. Additionally, the team has already established a redundant solution to avoid an extended outage should this sort of thing happen again.
So the next time you see SYS wandering the halls, give ‘em a high-five, thumbs-up, or blow up the rock… ‘cuz there are superheroes among us.