By BUILDING PRODUCTS Magazine Staff
Lots of detailed specs and easy-to-use searches are the main features our contractor-reviewers love about their favorite tool manufacturer Web sites. And unlike most other product Web sites, many tool manufacturer sites link to retailers? sites where tools and equipment can be purchased online.
While the top tool manufacturer Web sites are among the best across all product categories, Porter-Cable?s is the standout, according to our reviewers. It offers extensive specs, easy navigation, and quick searches for products, dealers, and service centers.
Favorite Tools & Equipment Sites
Delta Machinery N Y N N N 3 — 3 2 3 Simple, straightforward site; can search for tools by model number or by keyword; easy to find dealer and service center lists; contains links to online retailers. DeWalt N Y N N N 3 — 3 3 3 Great specs and photos; well organized; easy-to-use service center list; helpful toolbar on every page; contains links to sites that sell its tools; includes member section; busy home page. Hitachi N Y N N N 3 — 2 3 3 Well organized; detailed specs; nifty toolbar on every page; can download owner?s manual, safety information, and service parts guides; contains links to online retailers that sell its products. Milwaukee Y Y N Y N 3 — 3 3 3 Detailed specs; easy-to-use product catalog; FAQs discuss specifics, like cutting roof jacks and using cut-off wheels; contains links to online retailers; product search a bit cumbersome. Porter-Cable N Y N N N 3 — 3 2 3 Detailed specs; useful toolbars on every page; easy to navigate and to search; contains links to online retailers that sell its products. Vermont American N Y N N N 3 — 2 3 3 Helpful toolbars on every page; contains links to online retailers that sell its products; limited specs. As compared with the other favorite sites. 1=below average; 2=average; 3=above average; N=no; Y=yes
[This article is a reprint from BUILDING PRODUCTS Magazine, November/December 2001 issue.]