Toyota : Indexing downloads

Toyotapdfreport click to view

A breakdown aids recovery of documents.

The Site

Toyota, a Japan-based vehicle maker, provides an intermediate HTML page for a PDF-based report.

Toyota publishes its full annual sustainability report in a PDF version that can be downloaded from all pages within the summary web (HTML) version on its site. Clicking the ‘PDF File Download’ link opens an index page that follows the chapter headings in the full report. Beneath each heading are the chapter’s topic headings; for example, Vision and Structure covers Corporate Philosophy and Corporate Governance and Legal Compliance. Next to each topic is the red Adobe PDF icon and a note of file size. Topics under Environmental Aspects also have a short résumé of subject matter. Downloading the whole report is an option.

The same index page appears if the ‘download’ link on the report landing page is clicked. This is the page visitors are taken to if they follow prompts for the report around the site.

The Takeaway

Rare is the organisation that does not make its major reports and reviews available in downloadable form from its website. Many follow Toyota’s example in making the PDF version the ‘proper’ or full-strength one and providing a summary for online readers. Few, though, go to the lengths Toyota does with its index page to help oil the download process.

The first thing the index page provides is a preview of the publication; if it hasn’t got what you’re looking for or anything of interest, you don’t have to download and navigate the document before you find that out. In other words, it does what index pages were designed to do but which it seldom seems to occur to PDF publishers to provide at the point of download. Breaking the report into chapters is a great help to anyone wanting only selected information, partly for the saving in download time (the full Toyota report is 9.7MB), partly for the convenience, not least where firewall limits are an issue.

First published on 24 March, 2009