New Website - Feedback Please

20rogersc

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jun 28, 2005
1,144
0
Brighton, UK
The Ragdoll Project

I have just created my first website for a friend, and would love some feedback.

Lets give you some background first.
"The Ragdoll Project" is an idea of my friends, who wanted to create a website for biking/trials with photos/videos.

I have made 6 pages, which are like a 'front' for "The Ragdoll Project". The Videos and Photos pages have links off onto another site, which my friend will update, but they haqve not been created yet. This means that I will not have to update what I've created, so my work is done.

I would love any comments please, as I may well update it if it requires improvements.

The Ragdoll Project

Thanks

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mad jew

Moderator emeritus
Apr 3, 2004
32,194
6
Adelaide, Australia
Nice work.

Just nitpicking, but is there any way to make the border black instead of white. On a high resolution display there's a lot of white in the page. It's pretty bright.

That's just being picky though. Otherwise it's a very cool site. :)
 
L

Lau

Guest
Yup, that's pretty cool. I like.

If I were to suggest anything, it's that the main text on each page is too big - e.g. the "Welcome to Ragdoll, if you have any photos...etc" bit. The title and the headings in the mashed up typeface are fine, but the body text seems to be a similar size to that, and dropping it down a bit might make the hierarchy work better. It's almost the same size as the subheadings at the moment.

But, that's nitpicking - it's basically a very sweet looking site. I really like the photos. And the square shape. My next website update's going to be square. I like squares.... Oh, and the front entry page looks like a very cool album cover. :)
 

20rogersc

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jun 28, 2005
1,144
0
Brighton, UK
Thanks a lot for the nit-picking so far. I'm don't mind the comments, as I would want to know how to improve this site, and anymore I produce in the future.

With the smaller text suggestion, I thought that doing this may make it look 'spaced out', as there would be a lot more background visible, as there is not a lot of text. However I will give it a go, and see what I think. [Maybe post the two up here, and get opinions]

Thanks

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MontyZ

macrumors 6502a
Jan 7, 2005
887
0
Okay, you wanted a critique, I'll give it to ya...

1) The splash page is dark and not very welcoming. The name of the site is barely visible on that graphic. Plus, what am I supposed to do when that shows up? There is no navigation at all, and no instructions. You have to assume all visitors are really stupid and won't know to click on that graphic to get into the site. My advice: get rid of the splash page and just take them directly to the site's real homepage.

2) The font used for your navigation is blurry and not very legible.

3) The "Welcome" message: Why does it have to be right-aligned? Left-aligned or even centered would look better. Also, a little margin around the text so it's not running into the very edge would make it look better, too.

4) When you click on the Photos menu option, you are taken to a page that tells you to "click here for the photos." Why not just make the top-level nav do that instead of requiring 2 clicks to see the photos? Also, the link doesn't work, it says "page not found."

5) Same for the Videos.

6) You are using graphical-text where you don't really need to. Instead of making all the text a graphic, it would be better to use a background image and place real text over that. It'll be better for the search engines, and it will make the site a lot easier to update.

7) The textured background behind the text is unecessary because there is already so much textured photography being used everywhere else. It would look better to make the text area a solid block of color, such as the pink color you are using. The site needs more color than it has, and this would be a simple and effective way to do that.

8) The photos are all a little blurry, you need to apply the Unsharp Mask tool to them in Photoshop to sharpen them up a bit.

Hope that's helpful! :)
 

20rogersc

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jun 28, 2005
1,144
0
Brighton, UK
MontyZ said:
Okay, you wanted a critique, I'll give it to ya...

1) The splash page is dark and not very welcoming. The name of the site is barely visible on that graphic. Plus, what am I supposed to do when that shows up? There is no navigation at all, and no instructions. You have to assume all visitors are really stupid and won't know to click on that graphic to get into the site. My advice: get rid of the splash page and just take them directly to the site's real homepage.

2) The font used for your navigation is blurry and not very legible.

3) The "Welcome" message: Why does it have to be right-aligned? Left-aligned or even centered would look better. Also, a little margin around the text so it's not running into the very edge would make it look better, too.

4) When you click on the Photos menu option, you are taken to a page that tells you to "click here for the photos." Why not just make the top-level nav do that instead of requiring 2 clicks to see the photos? Also, the link doesn't work, it says "page not found."

5) Same for the Videos.

6) You are using graphical-text where you don't really need to. Instead of making all the text a graphic, it would be better to use a background image and place real text over that. It'll be better for the search engines, and it will make the site a lot easier to update.

7) The textured background behind the text is unecessary because there is already so much textured photography being used everywhere else. It would look better to make the text area a solid block of color, such as the pink color you are using. The site needs more color than it has, and this would be a simple and effective way to do that.

8) The photos are all a little blurry, you need to apply the Unsharp Mask tool to them in Photoshop to sharpen them up a bit.

Hope that's helpful! :)
Thanks, MontyZ, I'm happy with any comments like these, as I want to create a great looking site.

I will try the suggestions, but as for the photos and videos pages, my friend wanted to create a separate page for the photo/videos, which he has not made yet. Thats why the link isn't working, and I did state that in the first post. In that first post I also put that this site was a 'front' for The Ragdoll Project, so thats the reason for the seperate external links.

I will definately get round to trying some of the points though, thanks.

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20rogersc

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jun 28, 2005
1,144
0
Brighton, UK
UPDATE

I've started doing some of the suggestions and so far:

  • Splash Page "CLICK TO ENTER" - Will redo again when I have time
  • Sharpened Pics
  • About to redo text - make it smaller, and maybe experiment with different backgrounds
(The splash page and pics have just been put up)

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jeremy.king

macrumors 603
Jul 23, 2002
5,478
1
Fuquay Varina, NC
Two things I noticed

1) Can't read the links on top nav. Need to brighten those (change color) or soften the background.

2) No need to tell your visitors to "Click Here" just use some standard visuals (underlines and mouseovers) such as underlined text to indicate hyperlinks.
 

mad jew

Moderator emeritus
Apr 3, 2004
32,194
6
Adelaide, Australia
kingjr3 said:
1) Can't read the links on top nav. Need to brighten those (change color) or soften the background.

Yeah, that's what I was trying to get at. Thanks kingjr3. The contrast between the white of the border/background and the dark site is a bit too strong.
 

scem0

macrumors 604
Jul 16, 2002
7,028
1
back in NYC!
I'm going to echo some of the concerns posted above, and add some of my own:

Legibility - It's hard to read a lot of the pink text.

The text is often flush with the edge of whatever contains that text, which doesn't look good, and distracts the eyes from the text.

The background is just plain white. White space is good to have on a page, but it is much too abundant on your page, especially to people with a large display. Distracts from the content, and could even give some people headaches. I'd add a very soft gradient background from white, to an extremely light grey. Keep it subtle, you don't want to go from one extreme to another.

I didn't check your code, to see the cleanliness of it, but it is always good to keep your code simple and clean. Pages load faster, you'll be able to update it faster, etc, etc, etc. Good coding will save a bunch of time.

It looks nice though. From a design point of view, I like it very much. Some might call it too boxy, all elements being rectangle, but I think it looks good.

scem0
 

20rogersc

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jun 28, 2005
1,144
0
Brighton, UK
Thanks to everyone's comments.

I have started to change the text, but with other things going on as well, it might take a while. I will also change the background colour, but don't expect it to be up quickly ;)

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Lacero

macrumors 604
Jan 20, 2005
6,639
2
Too much clicking to get to photos. Same with Videos. May want to avoid links that read "click here to..."
 

michaelrjohnson

macrumors 68020
Aug 9, 2000
2,174
1
53132
I agree with many of the comments above, though I will not reiterate them. (Perhaps later)

  1. Most Obvious Thing? This site was created with standard Mac Gamma. On a PC, much of your image-based typography is even more illegible than some have already mentioned.
  2. On the "Contact" page, the bottom of your left content panel (the one that states: "comments photos and links..."), the navigation indication says "Videos" not "Contact" (same with "Links").
  3. Your navigation indication is poor, if you could give some kind of visual indicator what page the user is on based on what link they just clicked, it would improve clarity.

Keep it up.

20rogersc said:
I have started to change the text, but with other things going on as well, it might take a while.
This is exactly why you shouldn't use images for your type.
 

jayeskreezy

macrumors 65816
Mar 3, 2005
1,135
0
well, it's the first webpage i've seen that was entirely made of images...it was hard for me to read and I basically agree with everything montyZ said....in all honesty i think it would be better with regular text links instead of image maps....also I feel like there is too much going on in the picture/background...it made my eyes water a lil bit...perhaps it could be slightly simpler
 

20rogersc

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jun 28, 2005
1,144
0
Brighton, UK
Thanks.

Just to make it clear, I am going to redo it with text, so I will have to redo backgrounds (maybe a select colour like MontyZ suggested, and redo the navigation over time, as I have other things to do as well.

Thanks for the input.

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