Thumbnail Let-down



This seems to be happening to me a lot lately.

I find an item on an online catalog that looks fairly groovy, but the photo isn't large enough to show all the detail I crave. I point at the picture, and yippee, the pointer turns to a little hand, which communicates to me that a larger view is just one click away.

But no! Clicking on the image loads a new page featuring the same image! What good is that?

There is an age-old convention (well, 8-years old, anyway) that clicking on a thumbnail will take you to a larger view of the same image. Delivering the exact same image is an annoying bait-n-switch. You can see this peeve in action above and in the real world on the Mabef French Style Sketch Box Easel catalog page at (To their credit, the designers put the thumbnail convention to proper use on most of the site.)

Here's a little tip for you web designers out there: if you don't have a larger view, don't make the image a link. Simple as that! Or even better, maybe the Jen-rule should be this: if you are running on online store, make sure you have a juicy, detail-laden image of everything you sell. Multiple views earn bonus points!