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Bad Site -- Low Information

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    Bad Site -- Low Information

    This is feedback for the TB folks. I finally gave up after spending over an hour on the web site and not feeling comfortable I knew what I was getting. There has been a lot of positive review on your bags, but your web site is poor. Despite all the words, the site offers little in terms of meaningful information, such that I went to a brand where I can SEE exactly what I am getting.

    I appreciate the J. Peterman style descriptions -- but a picture is worth a thousand words. Moreover, I could not figure out which brain cell size was right for my lap top or even a lousy color reference chart for the straps.

    I would urge you to steer your site so as a customer can be more sure-footed in knowing exactly what they are getting when they decide to buy your product.

    Thank you for your consideration of my thoughts.


    Perhaps the browser you are using doesn't show links or pictures because all of the information is readily available. Go to brain cell page for example and about halfway down you'll find a link called "laptop fit guide" That link takes you to Tom Bihn: Find the most suitable case for your laptop which is the laptop fit guide. Select your computer and it will tell you which brain cell to use.

    I don't see many "J.Peterman style descriptions" as most are prety factual - are you sure that you aren't reading customer reviews?
    When in trouble, obfuscate.


      I think the website is extremely well- designed and customer friendly. There are clear factual descriptions. There are videos. There are real customer photos to check out how the product can be used in everyday life. Moreover, there is an easy to follow laptop fitguide on the brain cell page like @ceb mentioned. If you are ever unsure if a product is right for you then I urge you to contact customer service (they have a toll free number and an email address if you are out of the country). A real human being that works for TB in Seattle answers the phone during business hours (they will respond to voicemails too) and they answer emails very quickly. In fact, my experience is that TB is more customer friendly (from website design, to free forums, to shipping notifications, to listening to customer input on bag design) than any company I have ever encountered.


        I think TB's site offers very good descriptions and plenty of pictures. If they're low information then I don't know what you'd call some other makers' product pages. As mentioned above, why not call or write if you can't find what you need?


          My professional opinion about this site

          Originally posted by sheeko View Post
          ...but your web site is poor.
          Although I doubt the original poster is still around, I'll put in my $0.02.

          Let me first qualify by saying that several years ago, I was the "webmaster" for a major pharmaceutical company in Delaware, so I've done quite a bit in the area of visitor experience and website usability.

          I have found TomBihn.com to be very well designed and easy to navigate with an engaging community and responsive customer service. All the web pages are quite comfortable to the aging eye – at a time when websites are very difficult to read, what with the propensity of having so many sites displaying small, light text on light backgrounds, annoying animations, obtrusive sounds and music, hard-to-decipher navigation elements, and more...

          Having worked in the tech industry for many years, believe me, if I access a site that annoys me within five seconds for usability issues... I'm gone, never to return again.

          The TB site is one of a handful of sites that I have frequented ON A DAILY BASIS for a long time. Perhaps it's due to my affliction with Bihn Acquisition Syndrome, but I actually enjoy – and appreciate – all the interesting information about travel and details of TB products available on the site.

          Oh... and I have no idea what "J. Peterman style descriptions" means.

          Someone please help me!
          I have BAS (Bihn Acquisition Syndrome)!!


            Likewise, I was pulled in by the very useful, colorful, easy to navigate website and blog, and posted about it at EDCForums. The website was a huge draw for me, along with the customer service and - you know - variety of bags.

            I also remember (fondly) the old J Peterman catalogs - the descriptions were interesting mini- travel stories with some product measurement / info and a painted picture. While I dug many things in the catalog, they would often be a little different on arrival ... I don't find Tom Bihn's product descriptions to be the same - while narrative, there's a wealth of information, data, etc.

            I've done professional web design, including User Acceptance Testing (UAT), so I'm aware that everyone has different preferences with web browsing, accessing information, etc. I don't get where the OP is coming from at all (nor have I ever been so angry as to create a forum ID for a company I won't buy from in order to "send a message" ...), but to each their own.

            Have I mentioned how much I love my Citizen Canine lately ... ?


              Thanks, guys -- all of this feedback is great. I can see how the link to the Laptop Bag Fit Guide and Brain Cell interior/exterior dimensions was a bit hard to find, so I've added that link to a few more places.

              And sheeko, to chime in with everyone else here -- give us a call (1-206-652-4123 or 1-800-729-9607) or send us an email and we'd be glad to help you answer any questions.
              Have a question? @Darcy (to make sure I see it)

              Current carry: testing new potential materials in the form of Original Large Shop Bags.


                I agree with the others who've chimed in about the far-above-average site design here, but -- and I am definitely not putting myself in this category because I'm horrible about remembering to post pictures -- the helpfulness of the forum posters has surpassed the excellent main site, for me. I'm not a 'normal' sized human (5'0" since age 12) and the ability to get pre-purchase-feedback & advice from people close to my size has been so valuable to me.

                Years ago, someone posted a link to sizeasy.com & I've used that site countless times, not just to compare Tom Bihn bags, but to makes many purchasing decisions.


                  I am sorry sheeko but I can't see the truth in any of your comments. If I click on "laptop bag" I see a page dominated by pictures of each item with small text below it. If I think click on "horizontal brain cell" I see one large picture with a slide show just to the right saying there are 9 more pictures - all right at the top of the screen staring me straight in the face. Then just to the right where I would select the "size" there is a hyperlink on the word "size" which pops up the most useful chart in any bag website where I can actually select my laptop to see what size is best.

                  All of what I just said above was found with no searching or scrolling on my average 22" computer screen. However if I just take a second to scroll down through the text (which also contains some size information) I quickly see a section that lists more photos and even a video. I also don't know what "J Peterman style description" means but it barely took me a flick of the mouse wheel for me to go beyond that text to find more pictures. Plus it seems a bit hypocritical to imply the text is too bothersome all the while complaining you can't find information you need (which is in that very text). Finally if I scroll just a bit more I also see some links to external reviews. This of course gives you access to even more information and pictures.

                  I can only think that you have something wrong with your computer. If you do come back please post as much detail you can on the computer you are using including the operating system and browser name and version. If you can't "SEE exactly what I am getting" then you have a computer issue. If you do come back I would be happy to send a screen print of what I just posted so you can tell me if it is different than what you see.
                  Owner of : Imago, Aeronaut, Brain Bag, Smart Alec, Synapse, Co-Pilot


                    Just goes to prove that no matter how hard you try, "you can't please all of the people all of the time!"

                    Skeeko, I'm sorry you're not happy here. We are. I hope you'll find somewhere that suits you better. Have a good day!


                      Interesting... This TB site is the best I've seen for the type of products that are sold. I can easily navigate it on my old iPhone 3GS, my iPod Touch, an iPod, and my ancient Sony VAIO laptop. The search feature works well, and having the individual product pages link to other internal and external descriptions, photos, and related information is excellent. If there ever is a question, Beau and the others at customer service are wonderful with their support. When the Synapse and Co-pilot come back with more colors, I'll be ordering again.


                        Most everything about the site looks fine to me, however the laptop listing in the "fit guide" does not appear to have been updated for a couple of years (except for Apple products, which may reflect an Apple-centric TB user base).


                          i have found youtube and flickr very very useful for researching on tom bihn bags. then again, there are people out there that are lazy and don't want to do any research at all.
                          aeronaut[black/solar]tristar[black/red iberian]western flyer[black/steel]synapse[black/steel]side effect[black/wasabi]medium cafe bag[black/wasabi]large cafe bag[black/wasabi]shopping bag[steel].


                            The Apple-centric sizing discouraged me from placing an order for a laptop bag for a while (my company supplies us with Lenovo). However, when I called Customer Service they were extraordinarily helpful, took 15-20 minutes with me to talk through the options, and even measured the interiors of a few bags to help me decide what might fit. The combination of easily navigable and informative website, excellent phone support, and easy returns process is what makes TB stand out. In contrast, I've dealt with a number of 'cottage manufacturers' in the outdoor industry (tents, backpacks and the like), and none of them come close to TB in terms of service.
                            Enlightened traveller since 2009


                              I'm with the crowd on this one too! As an Australian customer, I try to choose very carefully when I shop online because I don't want the hassle or expense of international returns. TB has one of the best sites around for this - really detailed information, plenty of photos, especially of bag interiors (frequently missing on other sites), lots of links to external reviews, a great customer team and this fantastically helpful community to boot! What more could one need? Perhaps Tom or Darcy or Katy could fly over here to Melbourne with a selection of bags for me to make a personal choice!