Just finished my first website, recommendations?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by g4m3r7ag, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2013
    #1
    So I've taken a few basic web design classes while obtaining my CIS degree but had never really done an actual website. My uncle enlisted me to build a website for his bar he just opened and so I took on the task with some basic knowledge and a lot of enthusiasm.

    I used RapidWeaver5 to build the website. However I am not impressed how once it was published to the web, RapidWeaver coded the links for the pages as /code and /styled instead of by the name of the page e.g. /drinks

    Is this an easy fix?

    And the PHP script for the submit comments form, once you hit submit it just takes you to a page that says Thank you, we will be in contact with you soon and has no links to get back to the webpage. I would like to set it up to automatically redirect to the homepage after about 8 seconds.

    I also have a sitelock subscription I purchased with the domain that needs to be setup and added and I would also like to add some sort of Google AdSense.

    Also I'm not sure of an easy way for my uncle or his employees to edit the weekly specials in the sidebar, as it stands I'll be getting a phone call every time a special needs changed. I know there's an easier way for this to be done by them.

    Any tips on these questions or any other ideas or recommendations for the site would be greatly appreciated. Once I get the hang of this it would be nice to do some small sites on the side for extra money.

    http://northsidesaloon.com
     
  2. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #2
    Hi there,

    Congrats on your first website, it looks very impressive. You've asked a lot of questions so let's look at them one at a time. I assume you have basic HTML/CSS knowledge but let me know if I say anything too advanced.

    -If your web host provides direct FTP access (as they should), you can just change the filename to whatever you like. Also make sure you change the urls in the navigation menu accordingly. If you want to keep the format as /drinks instead of /drinks.html you will need to create a file called ".htaccess" and upload it to the root folder with this included:
    Code:
    RewriteEngine On
    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
    RewriteRule ^(.*)\.html$ /$1 [L,R=301]
    
    -You will need to add a PHP redirect function. I'm sure there is a way to delay the redirect by 8 seconds, but an even better solution would be to set the redirect to a special "thank you page" that matches the website theme, instead of the boring white PHP background. See http://stackoverflow.com/questions/5210624/redirect-php-form-on-successful-submit

    -I don't think you need a high security program like that for a small static website. If customers were ordering things online and handing over credit card details etc. then you would need some kind of SSL security, but here it doesn't seem necessary. I'm not familiar with Sitelock so you'd best try contacting their own support team.
    -Google Adsense is fairly easy to implement, see the adsense website, but I will warn you that it is very difficult to make money with adsense especially on a small website with minimal content.

    -What you need is a content management system (CMS) which allows people to edit your website without having to know HTML/CSS. My favourite is WordPress, but it would probably be too difficult to convert your html website to WordPress especially if your PHP knowledge is limited. Look at options like CushyCMS: http://www.cushycms.com/en


    I've been in the web design and hosting business for many years; it's competitive but also quite enjoyable and there is always room to improve your skills as you go along. Feel free to PM me if you would like any more advice. Also check out W3Schools, they have tutorials on a lot of web development skills: http://www.w3schools.com
     
  3. macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2007
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA, USA
    #3
    Awesome fix, but please note that advice assumes alot. First, that the OP runs Apache. In most cases that is the situation, but this OP made no mention of platform. Also, if you never used RapidWeaver it's more WYSIWYG with wizards than hand coded solutions such as Apache directives which are processed server side. I hope the OP knows about all that stuff and they probably do, but in context please be reminded this is site #1 for them, after all. ;)

    Absolutely NO disrespect intended to you, of course. I just saw an excellent but rather advanced solution offered to a new developer with few details.

    :cool:
     
  4. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2011
    #4
    Great start you have made there, the design is solid - although I think the logo and tag line could use some nicer colours and maybe a different font.

    Anyway, everything works - which is a good start - so I just have a couple of quick points in terms of content.

    1. You have lots of pages but not much content on each page. Why not consider rolling some of the pages together into one? I think the homepage, the location would work great as one.

    2. If you are taking some photos of a bar, get some people in it! A place needs to look busy with some sort of atmosphere to be inviting.

    3. In your original post you mention that you want to use Adsense, can I just ask why? Websites like this are supposed to get revenue from the customers they bring in, not from people clicking ads. Including ads on a promotional site such as this looks a little cheap imo.

    Other than that, excellent work!
     
  5. macrumors demi-god

    ChristianJapan

    Joined:
    May 10, 2010
    Location:
    日本
    #5
    Try flash-free, I came with my iPad and couldn't see the Photo-Tab because of error message.

    Plus the green in the title is a bit too "strong". Maybe try some other colors. Else it's a solid side; very good for the begin.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2013
    #6
    I like the idea of condensing the number of pages. I plan on their being more pictures with people in the bar however I don't know how to do the photo library without flash as that's how RapidWeaver5 put that up there.

    I agree on the adsense looking cheap that will prolly be left out.

    and the font and colors were chosen by the owner so I can't do anything about that.
     
  7. macrumors 6502

    dsh3

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2012
    Location:
    Denmark
    #7
    First of all, good job on the site! It is fairly easy on the eyes, fast, and seems to fit the bar itself very well.

    I do have a few things you might want to consider:

    1) The color of North Side Saloon in the header is too sharp with it's red color IMO. I'd go for something more subtle like a simple white.

    2) No border on the caption next to the header. If you insist on using a border, a more subtle would definitely be better. As it is right now, it's too distracting.

    3) The blue font color of the links in the menu doesn't fit the rest of the site. I would opt for a more suitable color that fits the rest of the color scheme.

    4) The image at the bottom of the drinks page is a whopping 3753x2975 pixels. Resize it and have the page load a lot quicker.

    5) The URL's for the different pages doesn't match their content:
    Drinks has the url http://northsidesaloon.com/code/
    Events has the url http://northsidesaloon.com/styled/
    Games has the url http://northsidesaloon.com/styled-2/
    etc. etc. etc..

    I did a quick mockup of 1-3 above, and attached it here so you quickly can see how it would look. Remember, it's just my 2 cents, and you're of course entitled to want something completely different :)

    And as ChristianJapan already mentioned, definitely loose the flash!
     

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  8. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2011
    #8
    Regarding your photos, there look to be a bunch of plugins that you can find online (I don't use rapidweaver myself so I don't know which would be any good) but I'm sure there must be lots of alternatives out there.

    Regarding the fonts and colors, they might have been chosen by the owner but that doesn't necessarily mean that they are set in stone, half the time clients will think that something will look good when it just won't.

    The way that I usually get around this is to offer two versions, one showing what they originally asked for and one showing what you think they should have. Remember he bought you on board for your knowledge and experience, if you can prove to him that your idea will look better 9 times out of 10 he will probably go with it, if not... well, you'll be out of 10 minutes work and you at least know you tried.
     

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