Art Fair Insiders

Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

Have you seen Zapps new look? Essentially it contains all the old gizmos with a new look (not bad overall) plus a few more new tricks. I just reviewed an application I was holding on to and found when you go to arrange your images they have a new "drag and drop" feature. It takes some maneuvering to get the images to split if you want to drag an image in between two others. Just like the "old" Zapp, if you go back to review an application your image order is all scrambled up so check carefully!

How about check-out!

Did yah Notice 3. where it says, "click the "Checkout" button"? I challenge you to find a "checkout button" it isn't there. You have to click the "Review Cart" button which then takes you to the usual window with the Paypal option, etc. I sent off a quick note about this issue to them and they got back to me immediately saying, "We appreciate you bringing this issue to our attention. We are in the process of correcting this." I appreciate their responsiveness!

Finally, although my initial look was only superficial, when you review "My Zapplications" I don't know if it's my old eyes or just a bad choice of colors. I remember when I was in Graphic Design school one of the cardinal rules about type style and color was "if you can't read it, it isn't functional". No problem with the type style probably just Helvetica but the light green for a heading? Not my first choice for readability.

Okay, so I've started the ball rolling...any other oops or applause?

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Comment by Jim Parker on March 19, 2013 at 9:06pm
Yay! Positive change is happening. ZAPP is indeed listening to all the feedback. Leah Charney posted some comments to that effect on the NAIA FB forum. Keep the criticism positive and constructive.
Comment by Larry Berman on March 19, 2013 at 9:02pm

ZAPP just fixed drag and drop on mobile devices. You can now push images into position with your finger. I just tested it on my iPad and it works fine.

Thanks Leah.

Larry Berman

Comment by Sherry Curtis on March 18, 2013 at 7:33pm

Not sure how it happened but when I highlighted one of my pieces the whole story about that item came up.  When I tried to go  back to put the rest of the images in the piece came up previously was gone.  It is deleated from my ZAPP profile.  Since I don't know much about the computer and even less about pixels I had the photographer add them to my site (for a price)  So now that picture that I used is gone.  Not too happy with that. 


Also not fond of the new graphics.  They are very busy and don't have anything to do with signing up for a show. 

On a positive note, I like the ability to only view the shows that are still open for applications vs. having to sift through them all and finding that after you click on apply to show you find that it is already closed.

Comment by sean McDougal on March 13, 2013 at 10:22am

I am not a web designer or very skilled with the computer. But I do know that a good website should be as simple and easy to use and navigate for your customers. But Zapp nor most of the shows look at us as customers. They look at it from a " We need them" view. So chances are it won't get any easier.

Comment by Jim Parker on March 13, 2013 at 10:03am

I don't think that ZAPP thought this one through. The upgrade is largely cosmetic, and not in a good way. None of the changes really address functionality. Key issues to artists:

Image size that works on all browsers, especially for monitor jurying.

Image preview that matches what judges will see.

No image cutoff on smaller machines.

Image reorder on mobile devices. The old system was workable on mobile; the new system is not.

Readability and scalability for mobile device. The small check boxes, the green type, size of type -- all of these make it impossible to work effectively on a small screen.

Streamline the click experience on the shopping cart. It is actually more confusing than before, and it wasn't that great to start with. Now to checkout you have to click "review cart", not once, but twice. Wussup wit dat?

I could go on, but it's likely that they've shot their wad cost-wise already and we won't be seeing fixes anytime soon. At least we're nearing the end of the national show application process for this year, and maybe they'll have time to really improve it before next year's apps kick in.

Comment by Jon Walton on March 13, 2013 at 9:35am

Did anyone at Zapp actually try to read that light green type? I'm getting an eyeball hernia. I wrote them about the difficulty.  No response.

Comment by Jim Parker on March 12, 2013 at 11:32pm

Lest I sound completely negative, the monthly calendar of events is a nice addition. If you could filter this by favorite events, it would be a win. As it is, it's too full of events most of us will never participate in, and don't care about.

Comment by Jim Parker on March 12, 2013 at 11:31pm

The cart actually requires one more click than it did previously. From review cart to review cart to choosing a payment method to the payment screen.

The issue of not being able to reorder images with a mobile device is a huge oversight.

It looks to me that this is almost purely cosmetic. Most of the same features work the same way as they did before. The template has changed, and is a bit cleaner, but the light green on white is not good, even on a laptop. Moving the main user navigation to the right hand side is arguable more user friendly, but the buttons are oh-so Web 1.0.

They could have used some beta testing and some feedback from artist users. They also could have benefitted from a usability expert, an information designer and a real web designer.

Mostly a lot of ado about nothing. Were there under the hood improvements to database caching, or distributed hosting? We'll never know, as they have been strangely silent. Questions on the ZAPP forum and ZAPP's Facebook page go unanswered.

For me, the money would have been better spent had they written a requirements document before changing any code. This ideally would have included user feedback to roll the image problems they introduced earlier in the year back to the previous state; some user testing on mobile devices and a robust mobile platform: at the very least a responsive design that works well on mobile devices. Drag and drop does nothing to help those of us on iPads, iPhones and Android devices trying to apply to shows while on the road.

Generally, a step backward, yet again.

Comment by Nels Johnson on March 12, 2013 at 10:06pm

Oh please.  They upgraded the process and slow-downed everything--how does that make the process easier.  The sheer fact that they would ignore that we are quickly evolving into a "Tablet World" and they make their app unavailable on it or a smartphone--just shows they are not that smart.  They are all about grabbing the money and giving very little back in return.  Sniff some more rodent fumes, Bill.

Comment by Bill Sargent on March 12, 2013 at 9:31pm

I just did four applications and it went pretty smoothly.  I'm old and slow to adapt to changes so that says a lot for them.  

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