Advice for website design

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by parrothead, Jul 8, 2006.

  1. parrothead macrumors 6502a

    parrothead

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2003
    Location:
    Edmonds, WA
    #1
    I just uploaded a website I created to promote my fledgling boat building business. It is still very raw, but I think it gets the point across. I built it using Rapidweaver, which seems to be useful for this marine biologist trying his hand at website development. If any one has any ideas feel free to let me know.

    The site is at: www.keakayaks.com

    Also, if anyone wants me to build them a boat I can do that too! :D
     
  2. Kardashian macrumors 68020

    Kardashian

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2005
    Location:
    Britain.
    #2
    Wonderful website. Really nice and Apple-y looking, the shinyness of it. Yes, I am attracted to shiny things.

    I've been asked to create a basic website for someone, I was thinking of using iWeb but if you can recommend the app. you used to beginners - I may well go ahead with using it.

    Well done, its awesome. :)

    Edit: On re-viewing the site, I would remove the word other, and move Completed and Current projects, maybe under the title bar? Above the image of the Kyak?
     
  3. parrothead thread starter macrumors 6502a

    parrothead

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2003
    Location:
    Edmonds, WA
    #3
    Thanks, I already removed the word other and it will show up when I update tonight. The app I used is called Rapidweaver. You can play around with it in demo mode to see if you like it.
     
  4. frankblundt macrumors 65816

    frankblundt

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2005
    Location:
    South of the border
    #4
    Very nice, I like it a lot.

    Although.. perhaps the navigation could be a little less dominant (not so wide). And on the completed projects page I got confused.. both links go to the same page. Navigating through the numerous photos over multiple galleries also got a bit confusing.
     
  5. etoiles macrumors 6502a

    etoiles

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2002
    Location:
    Where the air is crisp
    #5
    when you select 'contact info', 'site map', I wouldn't switch to a different page, but just update the righthand section.

    Maybe keep the background (white box) all the way to the bottom on every page, regardless of window size? That way you don't have the impression to jump to different pages...

    Also, not sure if you can do this, but it would be cool to expand the menu items on the left when you click on them... for example clicking on 'site map' would place the list of pages below the button etc.
     
  6. johnniewalker macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2006
    Location:
    Blackpool, England
    #6
    Looking pretty good, the only things I would change are:

    The width of the theme, increase if possible which might stop the nav titles from getting squashed together.

    Lose either the 'contact info' or the 'email me' page, I think you only need one or the other.

    Try using some of the plugins available for RW from here http://www.yourhead.com/ , I particuarly like 'collage' for giving images a more professional look.

    For more great plugins, tutorials and even some REALLY nice FREE themes go here: http://www.squidoo.com/rapidweaver/

    and here: http://www.multithemes.com/themes/free32/free32.html

    Hope you don't mind me being critical, I'm sure my efforts aren't award winning :)

    I've been building sites for a while now but have only just entered the mac world and so I'm testing various web apps.

    I also have settled on rapidweaver, it's great, simple to use but easy to customise by using various themes and plugins available.

    I have just updated one of my earlier sites using RW and as a testbed for future projects.

    http://www.dromorefreight.com/
     
  7. johnniewalker macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2006
    Location:
    Blackpool, England
    #7
    PS, another really useful site for RW info:

    http://www.rapidweaver-seo.com/

    By using some of the advice I'm hoping my RW sites will be search engine friendly!
     
  8. parrothead thread starter macrumors 6502a

    parrothead

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2003
    Location:
    Edmonds, WA
    #8

    Thanks for the advice. I dont mind at all you being critical. I welcome constructive comments. I will definitely check into the resources you listed here.
     
  9. parrothead thread starter macrumors 6502a

    parrothead

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2003
    Location:
    Edmonds, WA
    #9
    I just uploaded an upgraded version of my website using advice from replies I have received. Let me know what you think.
     
  10. parrothead thread starter macrumors 6502a

    parrothead

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2003
    Location:
    Edmonds, WA
    #10
  11. desenso macrumors 6502a

    desenso

    Joined:
    May 25, 2005
    #11
    Nice, clean website.* However, do you really need a sitemap?* In my opinion, you do not - sitemaps are for complex sites, which yours is not... it's not really necessary.

    Also, a big of a navigational faux pas: when I follow the link to*http://www.keakayaks.com/hulla/hulla.html, all of a sudden the navigation changes!* From what I can tell, the only way to go back is to use the comparatively understated breadcrumb bar at the bottom of the page... this can be very confusing to visitors.

    Sub-navigation is a very challenging thing to master.. even though it is logically simple, it can be difficult to strike the right balance between primary navigation, secondary navigation, and the site content itself.* My preferred way of achieving this is to have the primary navigation horizontally across the page, with secondary navigation vertically on a sidebar (where your primary navigation currently resides).

    The alternative, if you wish to maintain everything on the vertical, is to use tree navigation that expands when you get to a certain area of the site.

    Just something to consider... otherwise, the site looks good
     
  12. parrothead thread starter macrumors 6502a

    parrothead

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2003
    Location:
    Edmonds, WA
    #12
    I know all about this. I hate it. I have been racking my brains to try and figure out how to fix this. However, it seems that this is a limitation to Rapidweaver. The photoalbum page, which is what I use for the pictures of the boats does not let me do any of the things you suggested. This is why I posted about slideshow pro above. I know next to nothing about writing html or flash, etc, so I am pretty much limited t RW and plugins for it. Thanks for the advice though.
     
  13. idea_hamster macrumors 65816

    idea_hamster

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    Location:
    NYC, or thereabouts
    #13
    I agree that this is a bit of an issue -- if you recall, for a long time MacRumors had no way to get back to the front page once you entered the forums. Now we have that snazzy first Mac Rumors tab!

    Rather than write a whole bunch of code or tearing your hair out, a simple (but possibly less-than-ideal) work-around is to have the photo album page open in a new window. Then the visitor would just close the window to return to whereever they were. Not "best practices" certainly, but functional.
     

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