I would like some feedback..

Hi. I own a business "Professional Pond Maintenance and Fish Care". I'm not here to promote my business. I only serve the Southern Oregon area. I'm wanting to get any and all feedback, positive or negative, on a website I designed recently to go with it. I advertise locally and direct folks to my site for more information.
Here is the link: http://allyoudoisfeedthefish.net/index.html
What do you think of the basic design? Can you read it easily? Ads or no ads?
I'm thinking people here are close to my target audience, being that garden lovers usually like ponds even if they don't personally have one.
Thank You, Christian
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On the "About Me" page: You meant to write the plural of "lily", which is not "Lily's". It would be "l i l i es" (extra spaces added for readability). As a customer, I'm usually put off by grammatical errors.
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Lily
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On Mon, 24 Mar 2008 16:30:15 GMT, "JoeSpareBedroom"
Not a Bush fan, I wager.
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wrote:

The moment he said "Is our children learning?", I knew he was trouble. I'd let him rake the leaves in my yard, but only if he first signed an agreement saying I was off the hook if he suffocated by playing with a lawn & leaf bag.
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wrote:

~RAUCOUS GUFFAWING~
Val
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On Mon, 24 Mar 2008 17:03:29 GMT, "JoeSpareBedroom"

Hehehe. No Child Left Behind - teaching children to do gooder.
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On Mon, 24 Mar 2008 06:42:31 -0700 (PDT), Christian
Outgoing links diminish one's importance to Google. It would be in your best interest to eliminate the "Links" page.

On my screen, which is 1440x900, the fonts are H U G E. I can only imagine how retina-searing ginormous they would be on someone's 1024x768 monitor.

Well Christian, your page _is_ an ad; why would you increase competition for the readers attention?
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I too find the font a little too big. I'd like it better if both the background pictures and the font were smaller to allow a viewer to see more of the page without as much scrolling down. In addition I find the white lettering on the "About Me" page a little difficult to read. Your pictures are attractive! Good luck!

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Christian wrote:

Looks ok to me but font is too big and I would do more to flag out your service area. Maybe also supply your address. ads OK and if it helps cash flow - use them.
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Christian wrote:

I'm afraid the writing's just about as bad as it can get. It might get by in an amateur blog about ponds, but nothing about it says you should be trusted on anyone's property piddling in their ponds. Lines like this:
"A person many times sees pictures or a friends pond and thinks wow that would be nice.."
sounds borderline retarded, though
"Growing up I built a lot of backyard dams in my dirt pile"
corrects the impression somewhat, indicating to a potential client that the website belongs to a junior high school student who'd rather do this than mow lawns, but hasn't done any of it so far. If you ARE a junior high schooler then how cute is that. If you're not, such immaturity in an adult indicates diminished capacity.
That could be just a lack of writing skill giving entirely the wrong impression, and if you have a friend or family member who is both a skilled writer and willing to help revise your text toward the professional tone your website title promises, maybe the text can be improved to give the impression of a competent adult rather than a widdy kiddle.
I would be absolutely stunned if you to get a client from this web page EVER. There are no quality photos of gorgeous ponds you've cared for, even if only your own, to give an impression of the quality of work you've done in the past. The photos of some spot you found in the wild in no way indicate pond management abilities and again gives an impression of juvenility. A picture of you in waders in a beautiful pond using the specialty equipment doing the "vacuuming" you alude to might lend to better expectation of what you can do.
There's no indication of training or expertise of any kind, other than building dams in your "dirt pile." There's awkwardly written thoughts on "what pond maintenance means to me" and that's cute but people don't usually trust paid work to cuteness in lieu of proof of experience and ability.
-paghat the ratgirl
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visit my temperate gardening website:
http://www.paghat.com.html
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Sew ur sayin u don like it. don hOld bacK be honist.
:-)
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On Mon, 24 Mar 2008 15:00:28 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@paghat.com (paghat) wrote:

There goes an eighth of a cup of coffee. And a monitor.
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On Mar 24, 3:00 pm, snipped-for-privacy@paghat.com (paghat) wrote:

Ratgirl :) I do appreciate your honest opinion even if said in a rude manner with name calling even. You've given me a lot to think about and I do see your point on many subjects in your reply. What confuses me is I've gotten an overwhelmingly positive response over the last few days after posting this on numerous message boards and groups. Some people have some constructive criticism, which is the reason I'm doing this, but most people like the site. As far as not getting clients from the site your highly mistaken there. I've got my biggest projects so far from people who found a link to my site, looked it over, called me, commented on the site and actually say that it's the reason they called. I'm not sure I want to appear as a attorney cleaning ponds. Maybe somewhere in between as I can see how it may be a little to cute oriented.
Have a nice day
Thanks everyone for the replies. Christian
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(paghat) wrote:

Well, as long as Paghat broke the ice (hahaha): If you're getting clients, they belong to the 54% that get tingles in their undies from bad grammar. Here's an idea: Add a start page with two links. Republicans (54%) click here. All others here.
Seriously, don't ever settle for or appeal to the lowest common denominator.
I used to work for a very reputable investment firm. Most new people would choose a stock or mutual fund and cold-call all day long with it. They'd make a sale or two a day, for a few thousand bucks. I took a different approach. I made calls and said I was looking for new clients. It took longer, but one day, a miracle happened. There was a lady who was the daughter of the guy who invented a product we all use. Her secretary was sick, so she was answering her own phone. Two weeks and three meetings later, she gave me a check for twelve million dollars "just to see what you can do with some small money until we know each other better."
I mention this because I have some gorgeous garden books with pictures of pools & ponds half the size of my house. Maybe you'd like that kind of business. Would you drive to Redmond WA for a job like that? Hmm...who's located in Redmond, and how many of its employees are millionaires?
So, with this in mind, what do you think of the idea of paying a high school English teacher to polish your prose the way maids polish glassware for the queen of England? Sound like a good idea?
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He's just telling whoppers, or his grandma bit.
-paggers

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Christian wrote:

That's your first untruth... you *operate* a business.... you don't own a business until your IRS return doesn't show you're operating at a loss.

That's your second untruth.

Your parents must have had high hopes for you to succeed in the arts... you're not going to do well in business unless you change your name.
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