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design critque please

Discussion in 'Web Development' started by findtim, Sep 13, 2014.

  1. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    blatant opinions please for this homepage

    http://screencast.com/t/fVYSaaGXD4

    this is "above the fold", seo crap will go below

    what i want to know is if you were looking for balustrading does this layout make you want to search or BOUNCE ?

    the drop downs are auto fillers for common types like stainless steel, marine, glass, stair and the location is auto feed by every town in australia so type in "mel" and it prompts to melbourne, melings, melba,mella etccccccc

    tim
     
  2. geodomains

    geodomains Membership: VIP

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    Looks good Tim

    Don
     
  3. chris

    chris Administrator

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    I like it Tim, I wouldn't bounce if that's what I was looking for.
     
  4. Horshack

    Horshack Membership: Community

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    It seems to be a bit too busy for me. I had to look twice to see the search box at first.
     
  5. zhenjie

    zhenjie Membership: VIP

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    Would prefer one nice picture over a puzzle of them
     
  6. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    thanks guys, i agree horshack "to busy" but i did that for diversity of the whole balustrading market, i agree with zhenjie that maybe 1 image would be better but once again i wanted to display the diversity.

    but your comments have helped me rethink the design and i'll present another one SOON.

    anyone else PLEASE post your comments

    its a GREAT way to " see the forest past the trees " and being able to post and take criticism i find is a truly growing experience and not a negative.

    thanks

    tim
     
  7. FirstPageResults

    FirstPageResults Membership: VIP

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    Not doing it for me. Where is the mobile first design?!

    I'm guessing if I didn't bounce on that page, I'd exit on the next.

    BTW I'm actually looking for balustrading, and the online experience in general has been poor.
     
  8. Horshack

    Horshack Membership: Community

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    Maybe 3 larger images side by side will show the diversity and make it look less busy.
     
  9. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    yes you are correct, i'm struggling to find anything "inspiring" across the world let alone australia which is one reason we are putting some effort into this vertical.

    we do have some GREAT balustrading in australia, hotels, resorts, high end homes, pools, the list just goes on and on but from a internet/website it seems in the dark ages with most being still html and tacky images.

    its so bad right now i can't even give you a link to a site i would recommend fro your project!!!! even my clients suppliers site SUCKS

    as for mobile version i am not doing it for this website, its not to bad on ipad as is, iphone it works but it does need redoing, my target market i don't think is someone searching balustrading on their phone so i think i have at least a year to make some money and bring the site up to speed.

    all to often people wait for EVERYTHING to be correct before selling into directories and thats never been how i work, i create them with " known faults" and then use revenue to fix them.

    thus i am constantly fixing sites :D , i know people cringe at what i do but it works for me.

    we are going to do up a few more mockups for client approval so i'll post them as well.

    thanks for the honest feedback, anyone else say whatever you want as i like the feedback and can handle the criticism, also i'm finalising the internal pages.

    tim
     
  10. FirstPageResults

    FirstPageResults Membership: VIP

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    You're making assumptions :). People do a lot of research of their phones, and the limited real estate forces you to really think about what the user should see - therefore you end up with a better user experience following through the the desktop as well.

    If you don't go responsive (big mistake imho), at least bootstrap it now and turn off the responsive break points to make it a breeze later.

    To me it feels like you a building a website just because it's a generic domain, rather than fulfilling a need. I think the website you are building could be really useful if you standardised the way in which information is provided. Needs to be more than just a directory. Why do I need a directory when I have Google? You need to value add, i.e. suck in all the products and build some usefull tools, then generate the leads/sales.

    There also seems to be a lot companies doing high-end and commerical, and not as much for smaller jobs like mine (even though it will cost mid $X,XXX easy). I mean they are probably there, but finding the information hasn't been straight forward.

    No one puts prices up either. All seems to be fill out this form for a quote shite. I'm still in the research phase, so I'm not ready to do that. I've spent two lunch breaks researching and I'm no better off.

    A lot of the websites provide photos of multimullion dollar properties as product pictures. But I'd much rather see this style first:

    [​IMG]

    My first logical step is to work out how much balustrading I need, and then filter through the styles available to see how much it's roughly going to cost. I would then expect to make enquries from there.

    Users at the higher end of the market would probably expect a different user experience, so I think budget would be another determining factor.
     
  11. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    all great feedback FPR , thanks, i'm working with a guy who is part of a buying group of 60 members across australia so i have been given a limited budget until "proof of concept" so i'm at the mercy of the budget even though i agree with almost everything you say.

    no responsive, i agree i don't see it as an issue right now
    building a directory because we have a generic name: yes, and i'd do the same if i owned "weddings"

    generic name: totally true, that is why we bought it, as for filling a need we feel the need is access to retail suppliers of balustrading products across a wide range of areas from house, units, highrise, boats, pools etcccccccccc and google doesn't do that very well IMHO. if it did you wouldn't be having problems finding what you want.

    why a directory when you have google ? because of the reasons you are having trouble finding balustrading ! you can't be the only one.

    useful tools: i've been down that path on MANY other sites and have found NO return value in my effort to provide them for visitors, visitors are just takers and i now dev these sites to create leads and give nothing else and i find that works. The feedback from my clients who list on the sites also agree, all they want is a phone call, a call to action, verbal contact to make the sale.

    we are not in the private forum so i'm holding back on my comments sorry, i'm presently also doing a site for a cladding company and the same issues arise, most show highrise big developments and not the humble house balcony because these companies want the big end jobs when in fact there is LOADSSSS of $$ in the humble house.

    prices: just to many variables is why, we looked at it and ended up with over 100K++ items, it would soon go out of date and drop shipping data feeds are not possible as the industry is just not in tune with that.

    balustrading is often like LEGO, in the end you have the bits but need to build it yourself, thats why you will be able to search for stainless, glass, wire, hinges etccc in your area.

    i agree an image of a section of balcony balustrading would be great for the user but its never going to happen cost effectively on a website with the amount of potential products. back to LEGO theory, its components that create the end result.

    back to the story: its the second click i want, the non bounce, presenting the homepage as an authority for balustrading.

    thanks for your reviews

    tim
     
  12. FirstPageResults

    FirstPageResults Membership: VIP

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    Ah well if there is no budget, not much you can do about it. Hopefully the concept works for you.

    BTW when I say "tools" I mean something that helps you work out what you need, which is infact part of the lead generation process.
     
  13. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    i TOTALLY get what you mean, just this week i have been involved in "wedding table planner software" " wedding seating arrangement software" so this is all very CURRENT for me , and it has NEVER made me money.

    ++++ clients want it but do not want to pay for it !

    comments like " ohh don't you just..... so why does it cost $xxxxx ? "

    i created a planner for myself , to then on sell, it cost me @ $25K , thankfully i managed to get my money back but ONLY JUST !!!

    stupidly i am about to do it all over again !!!!! but with the knowledge i learnt from last time, but now we are off track from this thread so i will stop.

    bottom line is this website is about to happen so i will bring updates for it.

    the sad thing is i think i am going to move my comments to the private forum because i do not really now want to detail the strategies in a google or public space, my client would not like it

    tim
     
  14. FirstPageResults

    FirstPageResults Membership: VIP

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    Those examples are pretty hard sells! Probably more suited to content/inbound marketing. Generally I'm talking more about comparison engines, calculators and things like "digital decorator". But yeah, they can be time consuming and therefore pricey to build.

    Indeed :)
     
  15. DnEbook

    DnEbook Membership: VIP

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    Whilst the term 'busy' does apply i didn't mind it too much, i thought there was some seeds planted via the front page, they are a visual design item, so to see some examples is a good thing in my view. I wonder if the pics were reduced with a white border around them? Overall a decent representation of the different types of balustrades so i thought it was an ok frontpage
     
  16. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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  17. Bacon Farmer

    Bacon Farmer Membership: VIP

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    The things that annoy me with that design are:

    1. the drop down group is not centred top to bottom in the main viewing area (below the menu).
    2. the drop down group border is transparent and your eyes are distracted by what's behind that border.
    3. the images at the ends are covered up by the drop down group so are pretty much pointless.

    Suggested improvements:

    1. make the drop down group border a solid colour.
    2. with the drop down group centre it, top to bottom.
    3. consider removing the 3rd row of pictures (bottom row) and stick the drop down group there.
    4. don't partially cover up photos.
    5. choose some hero pictures and make them bigger.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2014
  18. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    thanks BF, i made some changes
    i actually like the semi transparent but i made it slightly darker
    i increased the search size and quickly changed the images left and right which i will fix later.
    the "centering" is probably a trick of mind and i should put in images that are equal widths to stop that.
    i'm pretty settled on these sized images
    i'm pretty settled on not having the search area lower

    thanks for the feedback and interested to know if you think i have improved it now ?

    tim
     
  19. Bacon Farmer

    Bacon Farmer Membership: VIP

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    There's 3 rows of pictures in the body and the drop down group runs over the top 2 of them. If it was centred top to bottom (of the body) it'd cover only the middle row. The trick of the mind is that you are taking into account the whole page not the body.

    The drop down group obscures 9 pictures. I reckon those obscured pictures are annoying.
     
  20. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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