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DN Trade upgrade

Discussion in 'DNTrade Updates & News' started by soj, Jan 17, 2012.

  1. soj

    soj Founder

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    Well it's been a long time coming, and a few obstacles to overcome along the way, but we're getting there with the new look DN Trade. :)

    The purpose of doing a redesign was to cater for the future.

    We don't just want to be a simple domain forum - we want to expand our offerings to cater for internet marketing generally. Our domain market
    in Australia is growing fast, and we want to be part of it.

    (But for those of you who simply want the forum and nothing else, that will still be an option).

    Some of the new features will include:

    • Guest articles
    • Regular blog
    • Job marketplace (matching domain owners with Aussie service providers)
    • Tools and resources for domain owners
    • Improved Forum offerings
    • RSS feeds

    But we'd really appreciate your help please ..........

    We have a live demo running at the moment here: http://thevbninja.com/dntrade/

    Feel free to click around.

    It's right at draft design stage, so there are obviously a lot of things still to be done and added (and some stuff we definitely don't like!), but we'd
    really appreciate your input on the site generally. Better to get it now than later. ;)

    Constructive suggestions and critiques on design / colours / layout etc would be most welcomed please. 20 heads are better than two!

    Cheers, Ned
     
  2. geodomains

    geodomains Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    My suggestion is to get rid of the dark blue header background and same for footer, just go with white background you have atm.
    Other than that looks good so far.

    Don
     
  3. soj

    soj Founder

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    Hey Don - thanks for that, it is a good suggestion.

    What do you think of the use of a bit of colour elsewhere in the site? We're trying to make it bright and cheerful.
     
  4. geodomains

    geodomains Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    I reckon you'll have plenty of colour with the advertisers banners mixed in, maybe the menu bar background could stay, but would need to see, it's a bit hard to visualize atm.

    Don
     
  5. BenWalker

    BenWalker Membership: Community

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    Well you know how they say a Women takes just three seconds after meeting you to decide whether they will sleep with you or not. (Or something to that effect), as soon as site loaded, it lost credibility for me. Mainly because of the number of advertisements near the fold.

    I think instead of having 2 add units under the fold, you should have one 728x90 which aligns right. And the remainder space on the left could be like a “breaking news” kind of section.

    I also think you should get rid of the darker gray area. And bring the white area right up to fold. So its a bit more free flowing.

    Other than that, everything else looks pretty great. Looks like a big future ahead for the forum. Keep up the good work!
     
  6. Mark

    Mark Membership: VIP

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    Like the new look! I would agree that the header and footer could be lighter - it's tricky to see the footer links for one

    Apart from that - good stuff!
     
  7. soj

    soj Founder

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    I can't remember back that far ............ :D

    But all good points - thanks Ben. The designers put those ads there - not us. So please correct me if I'm wrong, but are you suggesting we do something
    like we currently have? CrazyDomains up top (big); DomainSponsor below aligned right?
     
  8. segator

    segator Membership: Trader

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    Hi Ned

    Our tester viewed the page width in the browser's Firefox , Chrome & IE on a 15' monitor with 1024x768 resolution and it seems too wide having to scroll to view data, perhaps due to margins within the layout. Although most persons nowadays have larger monitors.

    Cheers
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2012
  9. Ash

    Ash Membership: Trader

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    As long as it's easy to navigate, has good contrast between text and background colours and the font size is easy to read then I'll be happy... all of which the new design seems to be at this stage.

    Ironic for it being a .com.au site, I can barely see Australia in your header graphic hidden behind the crazy domains banner.
     
  10. djuqa

    djuqa Membership: Trader

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    When r u upgrading to latest version of VB
     
  11. aus11

    aus11 Membership: VIP

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    Would love the ability to give people 'rep'. I've seen a couple of forums do this and think it is a great idea of saying things without clogging up the forum threads with 1 word posts.

    I quite like the design aesthetically, the only thing that I noticed is that the real content is pushed down the page pretty far.
     
  12. soj

    soj Founder

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    Good question Djuqa! I have paid for upgrade to vB Suite, so will ask the designers.

    Thanks Tom - the "rep" / "trader" thing is definitely going to happen.

    As for the content etc; that's also a good point.

    One of the sites we got inspiration from was FlyingSolo - I like a lot of their layout, but they have a combo between vB and a WordPress bridge.

    We decided to simplify matters and just run with vB Publishing Suite.

    --------------------------

    General comment

    At the moment, the demo site is almost in its rawest state. It's like a "rough diamond" that's just had a bit of a clean, and a couple of initial "cuts" and polishes.

    So I thought I'd put it up here, and with the help of member's, we would improve the draft version day by day over the next week.

    So thanks in advance for your help and suggestions.

    Cheers, Ned
     
  13. Webfunk

    Webfunk Membership: Community

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    Hey Ned,

    I think you're doing great work on the new site, so well done! Can't wait to see the final thing...

    There is 2 things that I wasn't particularly fond of...

    1. On the home page, under latest articles, I don't think the thumbnail or the paragraph are essential - possibly just a catchy title would do the trick. To me, that would be a bit easier on the eyes. My first impression was 'whoa! so much going on!'.

    2. In the forum section of the site, I notice it then stretches to the width of the monitor (same as it does now). For someone like me with a 1920x1080 monitor, that's quite wide! And as we all know, wide paragraphs are a little harder to read. Maybe fix the width of the forum area to the same width as the home page.

    Other than that, I like it :)
     
  14. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    hi, considering its at "draft design stage" then it looks good, my designs are ALOT rawer then this at this stage.

    I call it "realestate" , the top of the page, i think you are using to much realestate, who's your target market? if its guys like me then i already know crazydomains as i think most of us do, so the next 2 adverts below the nav just mean i have to scroll down every new page which bugs me.

    in the forum, the padding between the 2 adverts and the forum icon needs reducing at the very least, squeeze it all up if you are goign to have these adverts.

    as for colours , in general i like them, but you are in "draft" so i'm not going to go throught the css as that can all be changed once functionality is complete.

    so in conclusion, i feel you are wasting the top of the page, what it looks like to me is your programmer hasn't seperate the homepage from the internal pages thus you are getting that same top bit everytime, this means you can't tailor your ads to different areas, eg: when the forum is on hosting it should have hosting ads, on drops, have drop ads etccc. taking a guess that this is not happening, not sure if thats the next plan??

    but you did ask for a review :)

    I'm more for "get the user involved, THEN flog to them" mode, i think you might loose alot of people beofre they look further.

    Just got off the phone to a business friend and we were talking about "stickyness" of websites, i don't think your homepage top "sticks"

    the 2 things i'd change are, get rid of the 2 pack ads on the homepage and move everything up, this way you are giving me more to "bite" at, once i am "involved" then you can bring them back in the internal pages. the next thing is get rid of that yellow instructions area and the breadcrumb, once again poor use of realestate, a breadcrumb on the homepage is not giving you any SEO benefit, it only works on internals, i'd create a page that has a link on the main menu NEXT to the homepage button, named SIGN UP or something but at least it will free up the realestate.

    i hope that helps?

    i really like the article idea i think that will be a plus for everyone especially newbies to the domain game like me.


    tim



    i didn't like the dark blue at first but its growing on me now.

    slider is great, sidebar widgets are great ( and internal pages) , tabbed homepage under slieder great, recent articles great

    have a look at the bottom of this website and its facebook inclusion and youtube channel:
    http://www.wickedcampers.com.au/ ( not a promo i have nothing to do with it)
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2012
  15. BenWalker

    BenWalker Membership: Community

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    I think findtim (above) explained it better than I did.

    Since you guys are in the early stage, hopefully there is still time to consider something like this.

    Basically Im always wanting to find web designers, graphic designers, SEO!!!!!!!!!! people. But its so hard to find the good once. Perhaps like an industry directory with a feed back system. Where trusted members can leave genuine reviews of the services. And the actual product has a rating like you do with ebay sellers.
     
  16. soj

    soj Founder

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    Tha'ts exactly what we're doing Ben. Already started in fact.

    http://www.dntrade.com.au/seo-challenge-t4428.html

    I'm putting up a web design challenge tomorrow - and hopefully this will be the start of a good "job marketplace". Matching Aussie domain owners with Aussie service providers. Bugger oDesk! ;)

    Cheers, Ned
     
  17. soj

    soj Founder

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    Ok - please have another look.

    We have done a revision based on a number of your comments.

    Little by little we will get there. Thanks for your help and comments - really appreciate them.

    Cheers, Ned
     
  18. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    can you post the link again as its about 103 emails down now !
     
  19. soj

    soj Founder

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  20. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    lighter header MUCH better

    OK, so if you're gonna stick with that 2 pack adverts then at least put your intro above it, give them a chance to love you before selling to them.

    I came to this site on invitation from ned, if i had found it otherwise i would NOT have joined, and the same goes for this new one.

    get rid of that silly house and the word "forum" they just CLICKED on forum , it looks like a forum, so if they are to dumb to know its a forum then you don't want them !

    attached is a quick jpg of what i would do.

    tim
     

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