oneandone software delivery

  Newuser2 20:15 15 Nov 03
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Being a complete beginner to designing a web site etc. I decided after seeing oneandone's glossy advertising to take the plunge and setup my own wed site and I also took advantage of the software package on offer.
That was on the 16th Oct, but I'm still waiting for the software to arrive.
Has any one else had any problems.
Most of the site is up & running but I need to register the site with some search engines & put the finishing touches to it.
The site is click here
Any comments good or bad would be welcome on the site.

  Belatucadrus 21:15 15 Nov 03

I think there's a bit too much info on the home page for clients with dial up connections. I skipped the flash intro (I always do) then had to wait quite a while for all the info to load. If it was me I'd take off some of the images and put them on another page. It's my personal opinion, but I see the function of a commercial home page as bait with good navigation to the information that interested parties/customers want. Get their attention first then make them wait, not the other way around.
Another thought, without the hyper links to terms and conditions & booking the home page wouldn't make it immediately clear that the property was available for rent.
I know I'm begging to sound really picky now but the location maps rather too small, apart from "Florida Pines" and "Management Company" I can't read any of the script on it.
Other than that, good layout, clear navigation all info accessible, nice site.

  Belatucadrus 21:17 15 Nov 03

begging = beginning .Spell checks can't cure lazy grammar.

  Newuser2 21:33 15 Nov 03

Belatucadrus
Thanks for your reply.
Your comments are welcome & will be acted upon.
I'm hoping the software if it ever arrives will help me correct the maps & allow me to get a booking form that is downloadable.
Thanks again

  Patr100 22:17 15 Nov 03

I like the blue design but it perhaps could do with being a little smaller so the title is nearer to top of the page. There is quite a lot on the first page with much scrolling although you have left a "Go to Top of page" jump.

Personally I don't think you need a flash intro - I also skipped it.The map is too small to be of any use.

calander = calender

Yes make it clear it's for rent from the outset.

  PurplePenny 00:22 16 Nov 03

Poor English really lets down a site and incorrect use of the apostrophe looks completely unprofessional.

"Universal Studio's" = Universal Studios

"it's" = its

"first time visitor's" = first time visitors

"American's call this" = Americans call this

"our management companies office" = our management company's office

"WALL*MART" has only one "L"

"everything from bed linen,... and full laundry facilities" - if you are going to use "from" there has to be a corrsponding "to".

There are also quite a few typos. This may seem like nit-picking but the fact is that it doesn't present a very good image. Had I really been looking for a villa to rent I wouldn't have read beyond the first few lines.

Penny

  Taran 10:31 16 Nov 03

I have a couple of suggestions based on my first look at the site.

1. Get rid of the intro movie - you don't need it and its design is irrelevant to your site content.

2. Reduce the size of the font on your first page at the top above the picture. This will pull that picture up slightly so it hits you right in the face instead of having it sitting at the bottom of the screen. Pictures say far more than words can in many cases, so use them to your advantage.

3. Remove EVERYTHING from below the top picture on your first page and set it out in a dedicated property gallery with a link to it on the left panel. This breaks the site up, looks far more professional and reduces the sheer volume of information displayed on your homepage. The homepage is there to catch interest and make the visitor want to go further into the site. The intro movie and huge amount of information on that first page are your biggest stumbling blocks from a visual point of view.

4. Your Contact Details link should lead to a page with your telephone number(s), point of contact (if required), address (if required), fax number (if required) and your contact form when you get it up and running. Everything your visitors need to get in touch should be on the one page. A tariff guide, general booking information and guidelines can be on seperate pages, but when you want people to get in touch, present them with all the information they may need to do so on one page only. This means you need one link on the navigation panel, instead of the two "Contact Details" and "Booking Form" links you currently have.

5. The body text font is a little small and could look better. Try the Verdana font in 10 or 12 point size, or twelve pixel size. It looks much better than pretty much any other font on the web for page body text and I am not the only designer in this forum who uses it extensively.

I've not tried to soften any of this and it's clear that you've put some time and effort into the site. I have been objective based on the overall visual appeal of your site. Others have commented on spelling and grammer which is all important, but layout, colour scheme and lots of other factors go into a good site.

You are off to a good start and I'd like to see it once you get things up and running.

The software from 1&1 normally takes a few weeks to drop through the letterbox. Unless you are getting FrontPage as part of your software package you won't be much further forward with regard to a usable form. 1&1 have their own form CGI that you can configure on most accounts (log into your 1&1 contrrol panel and click on the FAQ link at the top of the page. Search for CGI and you'll get instructions on how to set up a simple Name, Surname, Email Address and Comments form on your web. There are other ways of form processing and it very much depends on how much information you want to collect from your visitors. When you reach that stage, post again and one of us will help you out with a PHP form handler or something similar.

Finally, I'd suggest you consider making a simple Calendar in Excel and publish it as a web page on your site. Keep the page regularly updated with those dates that have been booked crossed out as unavailable. This helps you in that you won't get a million and one emails asking for July 26th next year, and it helps your visitors see at first glance which dates are possible for them to visit your property.

Good luck with it.

Regards

Taran

  Newuser2 10:49 16 Nov 03

Thanks one & all.
All points taken on board & accepted, I will update the site ASAP.

Taran
I will post again as you kindly suggested.

Once again many thanks from a novice.

  Forum Editor 10:50 16 Nov 03

particularly Purple Penny's comments about grammar and spelling - it's very important to get it right, and avoid the (far too common) misuse of apostrophes. In addition, there's no such thing as a 'walkin closet' it's a 'walk-in closet'.

I know all this might sound petty to you, but it's not; well-written text is a pleasure to read, and something that's riddled with errors causes tension.

Taran's comment about changing the font gets my whole-hearted support. He and I both believe that Verdana is probably the font of choice in almost all web publishing situations.

Flash is unnecessary on a site like this - a large number of people will skip the intro anyway.

Don't be discouraged by what we've said - your site needs to work for you, and I'm sure you realise that our comments are intended as constructive criticism.

  STEVE71163 11:28 23 Nov 03

Hi Newuser,
Have you got your software yet? I placed an order on the 3rd November and recieved it yesterday :0) Photo Impact is superb software that i would not like to be without. Net Objects 7 at first look seems ok but i prefer Frontpage. If you have recieved yours what do you think?

  Taran 11:44 23 Nov 03

PhotoImpact is a real gem isn't it ?

All that power, all of those lovely filters, masks, dedicated web widgets and so easy to use...

NetObjects is one of those unusual programs that manages to look deceptively simple but contains a wealth of features if you go looking for them. Mnay paople don't realise just how powerful it is and nevr look beyond the Properties and Site Navigation panels. It's a shame really because there are loads of drop dead easy bells and whistes you can use. Try running through some of the tutorial movies and read the documentation on getting started. I will agree that FrontPage offers more and is a more rounded package, but NetObjects has some really nice inclusions and if you cab learn to swicth between it and FrontPage, using features from both, you open up a whole new world of possibilities.

Enjoy your new software.

Regards

Taran

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