Same with Opera. Once I got over the learning curve (like figuring out
how to get Lee Valley's cookies to work, but not others'), its great.
Much faster, multiple pages at once, total control over everything.
preferences". Can be obtained free if your are willing to put up with
an unobtrusive banner ad in the top right corner.
Replace "nonet" with "yukonomics" for real email address
As stated to the other guy, I'm a developer since '95. I do all the
internet related stuff for a major auto supplier, in addition to doing
some side work. So take my advice as you see fit!
First glace, I like it. It's friendly to resizing the browser size
since the text wraps based on the width of my window. The graphics
are clean, and fairly easy to read.
Couple things I would change.
It's been shown that online reading is something like 50% slower than
reading from paper copy. To make things easier on your users, put
more whitespace in the main copy (i.e., more spacing between lines).
I generally use around 150% line spacing, but it all depends on the
I'm not big on the animated menu. I like the popout feature, but the
animation isn't adding anything to the site.
Don't change the background to yellow. That's nuts.
Put some space between the copy text and menu. The text edges right
against the right side of the menu. Put around 20-30 pixels between
What's going on with your Contact Us page? Your phone numbers are all
screwed up. In fact, the phone numbers at the bottom are messed up on
each page. The phone numbe wrap at the hyphen. I also absolutely
can't STAND "Under development" messages. ALL pages are always under
development. Get rid of it.
For your own protection, I'd be wary of having your e-mail address on
the page. You're going to get flooded with spam. Just put a form on
your contact us page that users can fill out. If you reply to them,
they will then have your direct e-mail address.
Ok, that's it!
The floating DHTML was just a lark, I'll probably go with a static menu
partially integrated with the graphics at the top.
There was space about that size there. It's not a concern though because
when I go to a static menu, it won't be a matter.
Maybe that accounts for the 150 plus spam posts a day I get. I'm in the
process of making a contact page, just haven't got to it yet. I need to read
up on the POST feature for that and I'll be converting most of the website
to PHP when I can find the time to learn that too.]
Thanks for the suggestions.
Dave, if you're still reading this thread, you may want to check out
Mease Communications at http://www.measecom.com /.
This guy got _everything_ right. Clean design, consistant across
every page, easy to navigate, no java, and _super_ fast loading.
I haven't explored every page in the site, but it appears that once he
got a basic page template he liked, he rigourously maintained the look
no matter which "services" page he was displaying.
In the finest tradition of website authoring, maybe there's an idea or
two there you can steal. :)
I think the .mp3 file for the music is so large that was still
loading. I went through the whole site, and came back to the main
page several times. Apparently this stuff is for sale, but could not
find any prices, ordering and shipping info, etc. I noticed that a
.mp3 file was still loading when I moved on.
I suspect there is little point in promoting this site in
rec.woodworking. The items displayed are all rather simple craft
projects, well within the capabilities of even our newbies. They are
the things we MAKE, rather than BUY.
I've read all the posts so far and I assume you need no more input regarding you
actual site. So I offer a little product help. (not a critique)
About a week ago I thought I might just make a couple of birdhouses for the
garden as we have a large number of magpies in the area (North of England) and
they decimate the song-birds (those the cats don't get). I thought that building
one would be easy enough but I did a google anyway. Just as well I did because
there is more to those things than one initially considers. To keep this short I
spent hours on various sites learning about the needs of various species and the
predatory threats they face. I also came across sites that just make the kiddies
version of same without much consideration of its use. The sites that showed
that they knew the desired purpose and provided helpful details regarding
species by species requirement and how their product catered for them would have
got my business, if I was going to buy one. So I think you could enhance
saleability by including similar helpful data, and designing accordingly. Your
customers will feel more confident and satisfied that they have made the correct
choice for their locale.
Some of the construction information available is very useful and not instantly
obvious, until you think about it.(around here those little external perches and
landing decks would summon predators in a flash) Things that look nice can be
impractical, unless your customer merely wants a colourful or novel ornament.
You can do a google yourself but to start you off try here:
Ok, with all the publicity I have gotten , all this rigamorole has generated
3 sales (all for the stone house) thus increasing my router budget. Now I
can get a better router then the one I anticipated. But, one question why
the stone house any specific reasons?
Any cub scout or brownie/bluebird can build a bird house. The
stone house is both unique and attractive.
Congratulations, you've found a /niche/. Now get wild and crazy:
Feature a first-class photo of your most beautiful stone house on
your home page. (Go with the flow.)
I've been a web developer since 95, I'm going to be picky... so here
1) Better photos. I realize you're a small shop, but if you're going
to advertise your products, you need some professionally captured
photos. You don't have that many, so it wouldn't be that expensive.
Photos that have white backgrounds and proper lighting. I'm sure
those walking sticks are quite beautiful, but you'd never know it from
Here's an example of a site that I did:
Take a look at the lousy photos they supplied me
Then look at the new photos they're starting to take:
Day and night. Notice also that the new photo were taken with a very
good high res camera, and we have the ability to zoom to a larger
picture for some detail work. These are small parts you're looking
2) Consistent font sizes and weights.
3) A consistent logo with the name of the company incorporated into
4) Better descriptions of the product. The cheese board says: "These
boards are very decorative and add a touch of elegance to your serving
needs." Why should I buy yours over the other guy? I don't even know
what kind of wood these are made from.
5) Either boot the "Home" button off the home page, or highlight the
button based on the page I'm currently on.
6) Others have talked about music and mouse trails. I don't hear
those, but I may have activeX downloads turned off on this machine.
If you have them, dump them.
Unfortunately, I can't always follow my own advice because I do what
my clients ask me to do. I had one guy insist I put a picture of his
Grandson on his business website!
However, I steer them in the right direction as much as possible.
If you're still confused between good and bad design, take a look at
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