How do people find my website?

  uli 12:51 26 Jul 05
Locked
  Taran 14:57 26 Jul 05

Obviously you should lose the banners and ads, which I see by the tiny text at the foot of the page is your intention once the site is complete.

The main image on your index page is grainy and could do with sharpening up.

Hmmmmmm.

Flash...

Well, where to start ?

You've done yourself no favours by using two things in tandem. The first is a dynamic myimpactengine ASP link to the main site content (not as search engine friendly as a standard static link) and your resulting content, when it loads, is Flash based which again will cause its own breed of search engine issues.

On a personal note, I find music on websites intensely annoying, especially when its a short soundbyte that repeats endlessly. The ability to switch the music off (which you have provided though it's not terribly obvious) is less important than just not loading your visitors connection with music to begin with.

The text scrolling on the pages in the main Flash content is odd too - your 'What we offer' page needs no scrolling, yet it has scrollbars. I scrolled to see what I was missing to find nothing.

Finally, your contact form needs some serious work. Forget about using a Bravenet form and create your own using one of the many form mail scripts available for free. All you need is hosting that supports CGI, ASP or PHP and you can choose from dozens of free email handler scripts to process your forms.

Hosting can be arranged for next to nothing these days. £30 per year will see you with something useful to work with and a bit more will get you a well specified account with a good host.

Now, I realise that I've just pulled your site to bits but eveything I've mentioned above will be a search engine hit as well as a general design consideration.

My own opinion is that you would be far better served by ditching your Flash content completely and using a nice page template for consistent page layout with fully searchable text and static images. Your site will immediately be more search engine friendly as a result, and you won't scare people off with your 'Loading...' screen.

The only reason I allowed the page to load was to view your site since you requested feedback. Had I stumbled on the site or found it through a search engine I'd have closed the browser as soon as I saw the loading page.

If any of this seems at all unkind, it isn't intended to be. Sharper pictures in a gallery might be nice, and putting your text to work in static HTML will allow you to jump start your search engine indexing.

Best of luck with it.

T

  Forum Editor 00:36 29 Jul 05

but I'm afraid I also agree about the Flash site. Lots of people - and I'm one of them - simply click away when they see that Flash 'Loading' page. You'll lose potential customers, and that's the one thing you can't afford to do - the travel business is a difficult enough market as it is.

Flash sites have their place in the scheme of things, but for commercial sites you should stick to html - it's far easier to change site content rapidly and regularly, and that's what you'll need to do if you want to stand any chance of success. There are a million suitable html templates out there, and you can customise one of them very easily. Music just makes things worse - it really irritates me, and I know I'm not alone.

I realise that all this negative comment can be terribly discouraging, but you're in business to make money, and I would be failing you if I said "Great site, no problems". I couldn't agree more with fourm member's final paragraph - you get a very few seconds to grab a visitor's attention, and your index page is your shop window. Go for an html homepage and cram it with attractive imagery and interesting information.

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