Would really appreciate feedback

  murgle 22:21 17 Feb 04
Locked

Hi,

As some of you are probably aware by my recent questions on this forum, I have been building my own vehicle sales Website click here

I started building it in Novemeber 03 and have probably spent about 2 hours per day on it. Now that it is finished, I would greatly appreciate your opinions.

I have tried to design the site to be easy to navigate and be pleasing on the eye.

I look forward to your comments, good or bad.

Thank you
Ian

  Marky_Bhoy 23:46 17 Feb 04

Had a very quick look (I have to get to bed)

It looks good. But I think that the pictures of the cars (in the main area) are too faint.

Hope this helps.

  tomleady 10:00 18 Feb 04

loads nice and quick. it looks good and is dead easy to get around. so well done! i agree with Marky_Bhoy about the cars being to faint.

one suggestion would be to have a main link with a list of all yours cars (like the one when you click on 'Website Help'. I think that would help users.

  Woody_69 13:57 18 Feb 04

I am impressed at the sensibile layout and function of the site. I agree that pics would be better if a little stronger but maybe just faded edges.

You do need a logo though. Something simple always works best, maybe just your initials over an outline of a Scouby. Classy

One more suggestion. A bread-crumb trail can often help to navigate within a site. This is a list of the sub-heading (with links) of the pages above in the hierarchy. A prime example would be Dabs.com when looking at a product.

Well done again its nice to see a professional job by an amature. Better than going to the cowboys!

Woody

  murgle 15:32 18 Feb 04

Thank you so much for replying. I'm at work just now and will revert to your suggestions later.

Any other comments appreciated. Thanks again for all you time.

Ian

  murgle 18:52 18 Feb 04

Good evening,

Thanks again for your comments. I made a point of making the pictures faint as I found that so many vehicle sales Websites are in your face (too bright), however, obviously people prefer a more colourful Website, so I will look in to changing it.

tomleady:
Point noted about quick links to the vehicles, I did originally do this using the hover buttons but found there were too many buttons on the page. I don't know how else to do this to keep the Website looking simple. I thought the drop down menu on the vehicle sales page served this purpose.

Woody_69:
I must agree about the logo, I am not very good with graphics and may have to employ somebody to do this for me (maybe an Impreza as you suggest). I am not sure what you mean about a bread crumb trail. Probably too technical for me, remember I'm only using frontage 2000 (Is it worth upgrading to a new version).

If Taran is reading, would be grateful if you could spend 5 minutes looking over the site.

Thanks again.

  IClaudio 12:32 20 Feb 04

Agree with others, the faint pics are the first thing to hit you ('Is something wrong?'), but you're right about the 'brash' look of other sites!

Overall, it looks good: I especially like the way you have laid out the 'Car Search' pages, reminds me of cigarette cards for some reason. And I enjoyed filling my Basket with several hundred thousand pounds-worth of shiny stuff ;) But I think the 'More info' and other buttons should open into a new '_blank' page: it's all too easy to get lost when you select these options and you need to keep the prospective purchaser focussed on that lovely shiny car!

Now, how about a nice discount on that lovely Mazda RX8, pwhooaarr....

Tony

  Pesala 09:16 21 Feb 04

Too big a gap to the details at the bottom of the page. No more than 1" is enough.

The text at the bottom is grey and difficult to read. What are you trying to hide?

The buttons: BACK UP NEXT do not behave as one would expect. They should perhaps be labelled: PREVIOUS CONTENTS NEXT

The View button with the dropdown lists is unnecessary. A GO menu can be made to go immediately to the selected page. At least be consistent. You have used View, Go, and Select on three different pages.

The webmail form doesn't open if popups are blocked. The form could be made big enough not to need a scroll bar.

I agree about the washed-out graphics. Otherwise the site is nicely laid out, and easy to understand.

  murgle 09:53 21 Feb 04

I tried using the grey text at the bottom of the page further up, but it made the page look messy. It is really only there for search engine ranking. May be I should remove it?

I'm not sure how to change the Back, Up and Next buttons as they were created by Frontpage, but I will investigate.

I'm not sure what you mean about the "view" button being unnecessary. Could you explain in more detail please. What is a "go" menu.

I didn't think about pop up stoppers when having a pop up form. I thought they only stopped automatic menu pop ups not on clicking a button. I will change this.

The washed out graphics are going to be changed. Everyone has pointed this out so its time to change.

Thanks for the tips.

  Taran 12:13 21 Feb 04

A "Go" menu is the name NetObjects Fusion gives to a drop down listbox where each value in the listbox is a link to another page. I like them for form selections but not for general navigation. It's all down to personal choice though.

I rather like the faded graphics. Have you thought of just fading the backgrounds out slightly which would enhance the actual vehicle in the image ? You could also try mixing some faded images with a few sharp ones as an experiment for contrast.

A breadcrumb navigation trail is where when you click a link button and go to a new page, a series of text links at the top of the page tells you where you are in the site and offers a quick method of getting back. I use them sometimes and the easiest way of implementing them is with SSI [Server Side Includes].

Say for the sake of argument that you have a sub-category of your site for Nissan, Subaru and Toyota. Your visitor clicks on Nissan from the main homepage, then selects a link in that category for Nissan Skyline GT-R vehicles. A breadcrumb navigation system would give you a series of text links along the top of the page like this:

YourSite-->> Nissan -->> Nissan Skyline GT-R

Stanford University have a nice article on breadcrumb links:

click here

I like the site a lot and I think you should be very proud of your efforts. There are a couple of minor tweaks I could suggest but these are mainly down to personal preference so I'll keep quiet.

Finally, a logo is all well and good but a good logo, aside from being simple, eyecatching and memorable, also represents you as an overall symbol and should be seen on all literature. For that reason alone I can think of a great deal against selecting one particular model of car; many businesses are very successful without an image based logo and rely on text to be recognised.

Well done.

T

  PurplePenny 14:14 21 Feb 04

I like your idea of having "understated" graphics - perhaps they are a tad too pale at the moment but the effect is very classy.

Penny

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