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Thread: Be gentle

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    Be gentle

    I decided it was time to stop working off of templates and a friend/teammate of mine had a website that was a joke and since he want's to make his wheel building company legitimate, I figured we each had something the other needed.

    So this is my first attempt to build a site from the ground up. Fortunately, he didn't want or need something pretty. Just simple and functional.

    http://www.psimet.com/

    (for what it's worth, I did the photography as well)
    Last edited by tspek; 11-02-2009 at 03:06 AM.

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    Supreme Master coder! abduraooft's Avatar
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    Some quick issues I've noticed are...
    • There's a horizontal scroll, when viewed in FF2(1024x768 resolution)
    • No background color applied to body element, which will show your site differently for users depending upon the default background color chosen in their browser
    • You could have made that form accessible
    The Dream is not what you see in sleep; Dream is the thing which doesn't let you sleep. --(Dr. APJ. Abdul Kalam)

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    I agree with abduraooft about the scrolling - the site could do with being a bit narrower.

    I'd suggest applying a margin around your right hand side images - at the moment the text is butted right up against them and a margin would make the site look more professional. Similarly, I'd move the caption text under the images down a bit to give a bit more space.

    The black text on white is very legible but doesn't make the site very interesting to look at. Maybe a very pale grey background on #content would fit with your colour scheme - and again make the site look a little slicker.

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    wel for a simple and functional site, we need to know where you are.

    I couldn't find an address anywhere and a friend of mine is an absolute nutter of a fanatic about cycle racing. He might find it useful if you were in his part of the world.

    bazz
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    Thanks guys.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bazz View Post
    wel for a simple and functional site, we need to know where you are.
    bazz
    May I ask...why?

    All of his business is over the web.

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    I guess because it helps people to form a positive opinion of the business. I do usually look for some background about the firm on a website if I haven't used them before - in part to make sure it isn't a scam.

    Geographical location helps on this, even if it's vague. "This business is based in Wherever, Massachusetts" just sounds like it's more real than one that doesn't mention anything. The absence in itself could make people unnecessarily suspicious.

    Also, for example, I might not want to be ordering from abroad. I'd prefer to order from someone in the UK rather than (say) China, for instance, because if everything goes horribly wrong I've got more chance of sorting it out, there's no worries about import tax, currency exchange issues, language difficulties etc etc.

    I agree that with the product being sold here it's less likely, compared to a site offering electronic gadgets, but it all helps.

    I could have sworn I saw something about Chicago when I was looking earlier, but I can't see it now....

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    I suppose if we switch the question around it may help.

    Why not show an address? Presumably, a customer will know the address once you send an item so it is no secret what the address is. So why not show it on the pages, unless there is something dodgey in which case, your client will lose customers. I'm not saying there is anything dodgey about the business but an address on the page would have prevented this discussion, which is all over the web.

    bazz
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    Quote Originally Posted by bazz View Post
    I suppose if we switch the question around it may help.

    Why not show an address? Presumably, a customer will know the address once you send an item so it is no secret what the address is. So why not show it on the pages, unless there is something dodgey in which case, your client will lose customers. I'm not saying there is anything dodgey about the business but an address on the page would have prevented this discussion, which is all over the web.

    bazz
    I'll talk to him about it, as far as content goes that's entirely up to him.

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    When I said "we need to know where you are" I didn't mean us as reviewers but, the customers.

    apologies for any confusion.

    bazz
    "The day you stop learning is the day you become obsolete"! - my late Dad.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bazz View Post
    When I said "we need to know where you are" I didn't mean us as reviewers but, the customers.

    apologies for any confusion.

    bazz
    I knew what you meant.

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    Senior Coder Rowsdower!'s Avatar
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    Ah, it validates!!!! That's always an encouraging start.

    Overall, the design is just OK. I agree that it's just a tad too wide. I would recommend no wider than 1000px, but that's just my personal preference.

    The overall style is bordering on minimalistic, which is nice. I just think that something is missing. Your colors all wash together a bit (where there is any color) which doesn't do you any favors.

    If you have a contact page, you probably don't need a contact form on each and every page as well. If you're worried that the typical user might not find the contact page then you need to move it up in the menu a few spots to make it more likely that the user will actually see it.

    The blog's style should probably be made to match the website style or vice versa (unless you make it a link at the footer instead of a main menu link). In my opinion, targets of main menu links should have uniform page appearance with the home page both to avoid user confusion and to provide a way to navigate BACK to the main page. You certainly don't want them thinking that they have been redirected to another site or that a link is broken.

    The About Us and the main page have the exact same content. This is bad practice in general and web crawlers for search engines won't care for it much.

    I guess that's about it for a first run-through.

    Hopefully I'm being gentle enough.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowsdower! View Post
    Ah, it validates!!!! That's always an encouraging start.

    Overall, the design is just OK. I agree that it's just a tad too wide. I would recommend no wider than 1000px, but that's just my personal preference.

    The overall style is bordering on minimalistic, which is nice. I just think that something is missing. Your colors all wash together a bit (where there is any color) which doesn't do you any favors.

    If you have a contact page, you probably don't need a contact form on each and every page as well. If you're worried that the typical user might not find the contact page then you need to move it up in the menu a few spots to make it more likely that the user will actually see it.

    The blog's style should probably be made to match the website style or vice versa (unless you make it a link at the footer instead of a main menu link). In my opinion, targets of main menu links should have uniform page appearance with the home page both to avoid user confusion and to provide a way to navigate BACK to the main page. You certainly don't want them thinking that they have been redirected to another site or that a link is broken.

    The About Us and the main page have the exact same content. This is bad practice in general and web crawlers for search engines won't care for it much.

    I guess that's about it for a first run-through.

    Hopefully I'm being gentle enough.
    It was at just over 1000px, it's now at 950px wide.
    Is there a downside to having the contact form on every page?
    I agree with the design of the blog. That's not my decision though.
    The about page is technically being 301'ed to the home page until he can write some content for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tspek View Post
    It was at just over 1000px, it's now at 950px wide.
    For some reason (some how) the new style sheet was over written since this suggestion was first made.

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    Senior Coder Rowsdower!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tspek View Post
    It was at just over 1000px, it's now at 950px wide.
    Is there a downside to having the contact form on every page?
    I agree with the design of the blog. That's not my decision though.
    The about page is technically being 301'ed to the home page until he can write some content for it.
    Perhaps not, but it would be something to explain to your friend as a suggestion/best practice. Even if he is not receptive to the idea it would still be your decision to move the link out of the main menu of the base site (since that's the one you have creative reign over). Wouldn't it?

    There is no specific drawback to having the contact form on every page other than...having the contact form on every page. If you wanted to you could plop the sitemap into every page, too but then why bother with a sitemap page on its own? Not to mention that it adds code and takes up space in your layout that you shouldn't otherwise have to worry about. It's basically just clutter first and foremost and it doesn't provide any real benefit. That doesn't fit in so well on a minimalist design, but even in a busy layout this is just bad form.
    The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid. –G.K. Chesterton
    See Mediocrity in its Infancy
    It's usually a good idea to start out with this at the VERY TOP of your CSS: * {border:0;margin:0;padding:0;}
    Seek and you shall find... basically:
    validate your markup | view your page cross-browser/cross-platform | free web tutorials | free hosting


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