One complaint I have against NPD; The newer website does not seem to be as easy to navigate as the older version. I really liked the version where I could virtually flip through the catalog, click on a part number and it would take me to the latest description/price/availability... I don't see that option any longer, and the search doesn't help much (brings up too many incompatible choices)... I also liked when NPD had the actual manufacturer and part number listed, but seeing less of that...
The "Virtual Catalog" option on the old site was actually my idea, because I've always been of the opinion that a logically laid-out traditional print catalog is STILL superior for finding stuff quickly (and being able to find all related components and fasteners and whatnot) than search windows and drill-downs. The latter are limited by what terminology you might be using (we follow the original GM text, but often there's multiple terms to describe a single part), and with drill-downs there's often 3 or 4 different areas that could be deemed as "logical" to locate an item. It's TOUGH.
That said, as we tracked behavior and page visits on our website, the sad truth was that hardly ANYONE was using our Virtual Catalog feature. 98+% of customers were insisting on going the search-window/drill-down route. Rightly or wrongly, it's how people want to shop. And indeed, they miss a ton of content by shopping that way, because they only tend see what they're looking for. They do NOT see what they've forgotten, or are unaware of.
The amount of labor (expense) we had to invest in maintaining those virtual flip-catalogs was immense, because we're publishing 13 brand-new books per-year. It was almost a full-time job, for a section of our site that hardly anyone was using.
So it got the axe when we went to the new platform. And in the 1 1/2 years that we've been on the new platform, our percentage of internet sales has increased 10%, which is a considerable 20% swing from traditional phone/counter to the web.
To all who preferred our Virtual Catalogs, I would suggest simply using the paper, and then for ordering online, we have a "Quick-Order" feature where you can type NPD part #'s directly into a form, and bingo, your shopping cart is loaded.
We are constantly working on improving our search window. But it's 125,000 parts in there, so lots of alternative terms to load to anticipate all possible queries. It's a tall mountain of data-entry to climb.
Man do I miss the days when it was just print catalogs, clubs, and marketing meant placing an ad in Super Chevy! It was easier then!! LOL!