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Thread: Redesign 20 - Feedback Please?

  1. #1
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    Cool Redesign 20 - Feedback Please?

    I just finished version 20 of my website (wow - I need less spare-time ) and was hoping to get some feedback...

    Any constructive criticism would be greatly appreciated! The snowflake on one of the banner images seemed to seem off to some people, but I think it fits the theme...

    The URI is http://tr.im/x96wd

    Thanks!

    // X95+(4-3) \\
    Last edited by X96 Web Design; 08-26-2009 at 06:11 AM. Reason: Forgot to add link...
    Alex Blackie, X96 Design
    My Website
    I specialize in: HTML5, CSS3, PHP, Ruby on Rails, MySQL, MongoDB, Linux Server Administration

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    Hi - here are my comments. Only viewed in IE7 during my lunch break. Please take anything negative as constructive - by nature I'm not one for stomping on other folks creativity.

    Overall, I really like to the look and feel of the site. I think the colours work very well together and and fading image effects add interest withou being garishly obvious.
    I like the snoflake but I'm not feeling the red tick - there's a bit of juxtaposition in the sense that ticks are positive but the colour red has negative connotations. How about making it a nice bright limey green to compliment the blue or maybe even a yellowy orange to contrast.
    Text content is clear and consise and short sentences make it an easy read - I personally hate waffle!

    Menu Bar:
    I think a central layout might look better since your footer and yellow info box both are. Also, I'm not fond of the plain boxy drop down on the Developers button - I like the secondary bar the appears when you click into the Free Scripts & Codes page though - maybe you could adapt the menu to use the secondary bar instead of the boxy drop downs.

    Home:
    I like the even blue blocks but the right hand edges would look better laying flush with the yellow info box above.

    About Us:
    Maybe add "In our opinion" to the best browser comment against Firefox - everybody is entitled to their own opinion and non-webbies may feel like your calling them stupid for sticking with their default IE.

    Our Work:
    Can you add something along the lines of "more examples coming soon / more projects currently under construction" so you dont look like you've only got one customer.

    Our Service:
    Same comments as your Home page re: blue blocks.

    Maybe reword "A fresh unique design from scratch with your existing content (if you get a redesign)." to "A fresh, unique layout, designed from scratch, and containing your existing content (in the case of a redesign)."
    "Every successful company has a logo and X96 can design your company a unique, professional logo." to "Every successful company has a logo and X96 can design your company a unique, professional one." (to avoid repetition)
    "Need promotional material? We can design you eye-catching advertisements for you!" to "Need promotional material? We can design eye-catching advertisements for you!" (sounds better, grammatically)
    Just some grammar/spellings to correct:
    "Are You a Web Developer?
    If you are a web developer, then you can get free help from us! We can help you with small PHP, CSS, or xHTML projects! Free! Simple drop us a line stating your project, and remember to send us your website address, without one, we can't verify that you're actually a web developer (and not just a person who want a free website).
    Also, try posting your question on Dynamic Drive Forums, the helpful community will surely help you out."
    "Are You a Web Developer?
    If you're a web developer, then you can get free help from us! We can help you with small PHP, CSS, or xHTML projects, Free! Simply drop us a line stating your project, along with your website address - without one, we can't verify that you're actually a web developer (and not just a person who want a free website).
    For further help, try posting your question on Dynamic Drive Forums. The helpful community there will surely help you out."

    Our Blog:
    (I can't view this page as our content control blocks blogs - phooey!)

    Contacts:
    Your form looks a little spaced out - can you pull the input fields closer together? Also, the black "if you have anything you'd like to say..." text could do with being grey, in line with the rest of your site. I'm sure it was just a little coding error but the black looks quite harsh in your lovely airy design - best just for the headers.
    Actually, thinking on that, how about making all your headers a dark shade of muted grey-blue rather than black - like the "current-page" lowlight on the menu buttons?


    Hope this is the type of thing you were looking for - keep up the good work.

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    X96 Web Design (08-26-2009)

  4. #3
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    Thank you very, very much! That has helped me a lot!

    I don't know what I was doing when I was writing some of those things! "We can design you eye-catching advertisements for you!

    As for the contact form... It's out of my control, unfortunately. It's made with Google Docs, so I can only edit as far as what form elements, and what preset theme. I got the closest one to my site as I could... My web server doesn't have the PHP mail() function enabled, so I can't use my own form.

    Sorry, but I'm not sure what you mean when you say "Blue Blocks"... Do you mean the boxes like on the homepage, and Twitter Updates on the About Us page?

    I actually hadn't tested the site layout in IE yet! And when I did, I think this is the first time IE didn't display it wrong! The only thing is the border-radius, without it, the site looks all boxy...

    Dang content filters! The blog looks the same as the rest of the site, even the menu's the same. And you weren't missing much...

    I agree with the "Under Construction" thing on the portfolio page - because there are a couple more clients in the works...

    Again, thank you very much! I appreciate the feedback!

    Cheers,
    X96
    Alex Blackie, X96 Design
    My Website
    I specialize in: HTML5, CSS3, PHP, Ruby on Rails, MySQL, MongoDB, Linux Server Administration

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    Hi again,

    When I say "blue blocks" I mean the blocks with headers such as "Don't Take Chances" and "Unique Designs" - the right hand edge of them doesnt come up to the same point as the yellow info box above (in IE7 at least).

    Re: Forms
    Something which may help you and IMO is fabulous for managing your forms/data AND keeping a database backup, is "Form Tools": http://ft2.formtools.org/
    It's free, and its got a mail() override plugin/module so you can use an SMTP email server instead!: http://docs.formtools.org/userdoc/?p..._mailer_module.

    With Form Tools, you can create any number of forms you want, whether thats for website visitors to submit questions or info, or you, yourself to use on the back-end to log your clients details. You can use one installation to manage forms on multiple websites. You can export data to excel or straight to print. You can setup auto-replies with ready made templates. And you can also create "client" management lists to allow you, or your admins, or customers, to access the records received by specific forms - you get to say who can see/edit what form records.

    For example - I have around 15 forms on my site that I can access everything for. I have a chair woman who can also see/edit the records for all 15 forms too. I also have a "vendors" manager who can only see the records for her "Vendor Tables" form and none of the other 14 forms.

    The best thing is that on the visitor-end there is no branding so they are none the wiser on how you're managing all the info they submit.

    The only down-side is that spam protection is a little lapse in the processing script but I've integrated a very simple mechanism into mine that, so far, has not let one piece of junk through.

    If you decide to try the Form Tools software and would like me to pass along the anti-spam tit-bit I use then let me know and I'll send it along - probably best via private messaging so I get the email notifications as I might miss your reaply here on the DD forum.

    Have fun!

    Beverley

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    X96 Web Design (08-27-2009)

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    Thank you, again! I'll definitely check out that form mailer!

    Okay - now I get what you mean! I'll try centering the wrapper around them so they're centered under the message box.
    Edit: I changed the right boxes to float right instead of left - that seemed to work.


    Cheers,
    X96
    Alex Blackie, X96 Design
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    I specialize in: HTML5, CSS3, PHP, Ruby on Rails, MySQL, MongoDB, Linux Server Administration

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    I use Form Tools also, it's a fantastic system. Best part is you still make all your own forms, so you still have all the control you need. (I love stuff where I don't have to follow the rules too closely... )

    Quote Originally Posted by Beverleyh View Post
    ...I've integrated a very simple mechanism into mine that, so far, has not let one piece of junk through
    That sounds interesting... I may have to politely ask if you could send it along to me as well...

    About the site...
    Site looks good. The main thing I would change is a presentational aspect: your "Next Step" link needs to be much more prominent. I would consider putting it in the top banner. The features you have in that area now (Twitter, Survey, Featured Client, etc.) could be just as effective in a smaller banner (maybe a quarter or third of the height...?). That's what I would do, anyway. Hope it helps.

    Edit: ... maybe put a little less emphasis on how many times you've revised your website? "Version 20" borders on saying "we can't find a setup that works".
    Last edited by traq; 08-28-2009 at 03:43 AM.

  9. #7
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    I loaded the Form Tools on to my test server - and love it! I'll definitely implement that into my website!

    I changed the wording on the message, now it doesn't say which version, it just says that we've redesigned... "This is the new version of our website! Please send us feedback via our survey. "

    Edit: I never noticed how big Form Tools was! 1224 files to go...


    Cheers,
    X96
    Alex Blackie, X96 Design
    My Website
    I specialize in: HTML5, CSS3, PHP, Ruby on Rails, MySQL, MongoDB, Linux Server Administration

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    Of course traq.

    I've put the attached anti-spam package together using a few methods I've picked up from the web over the last year or so.
    I'm not a php expert so I can't write foolproof code, but using all 3 collected methods contained in the zip, and using them all together,
    has served me well enough to see an end to my own spam problems so maybe it will help someone else too.

    Please see the included "_NOTES.txt" file for installation instructions.

    Where my method refers to the "Form Tools" software, I've included the revised processing code, but I have also tried to include alternative code in case other folk would like to try something similar using their own scripts.

    Hope this helps
    Last edited by Beverleyh; 08-28-2009 at 02:18 PM. Reason: I made some mistakes in the attachement so I've deleted it and uploaded a new one to my post below.

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    I've just revised some of the code and re-uploaded my attachment for the above post.

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    traq (08-28-2009)

  13. #10
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