Website Critique?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by NumeroTen, Dec 30, 2010.

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  1. NumeroTen macrumors member

    NumeroTen

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    #1
    Hey! I started a few months ago during summer break knowing absolutely nothing on how to run a proper website. I've been putting a few hours a week trying to fix SEO and add some content. While trying to make my site more appealing. Do you guys mind offering some constructive criticism and critique? Thx!

    http://numeroten.com/_.html
     
  2. Mitchelino macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2009
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #2
    You're off to a great start. In summer 2009 I started a website using iWeb, and I must say yours looks better than mine did. I eventually ditched iWeb and bought RapidWeaver, which I prefer as a web designing tool.

    I like your banner in the header, it looks nice and reminds you where you are. The navigation links are alright; I like how there are more detailed ones at the bottom.

    I like on your home page how you have the square images; it's neat how the ones with green borders are normal images and the ones with red borders act as links to your other pages. Images are a nice way to offer links to other pages; it beats plain text, which my website currently suffers from :p

    What is your budget on your website? I ask this because you can gain a lot more out of your website by using a webhost that supports PHP. In fact, there are free webhosts that support PHP. A benefit of this is being able to create contact pages like this, rather than exposing your email.

    Have you looked into RapidWeaver? It's pricey, but is a good piece of software for designing websites. It has a lot more advanced features than iWeb. But if iWeb meets all your needs, stick with it.
     
  3. NumeroTen thread starter macrumors member

    NumeroTen

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    #3
    Thx

    Thanks for the critique!
    i currently use ipage.com as my hosting website. I've seen Dreamweaver and the capabilities are a lot, but as a teenager in highschool with no job the price is kind of out of reach. So far though iweb has been adequate, and I'm trying to do everything i can that other software editing tools can do.
     
  4. Mitchelino macrumors 6502

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #4
    Yeah, I'm a university student without a job (other than selling music), so I understand the budget issue. I used iWeb for quite a while. The only reason I "upgraded" to RapidWeaver was because it was in a MacHeist software bundle for $20; very good deal, as RapidWeaver alone was $79. I gave it a try, but went back to iWeb, as it's far easier to use. Eventually I got used to it and switched, though.

    I notice you've added some AdSense ads. It's usually a good thing to add to websites that don't generate profit by other means; it can certainly help pay hosting fees. Perhaps try to make the ads consistent. By that, I mean the same size and type of ad at roughly the same spot on each page.

    On your Top 10 page, there's a lot of space taken up by the photo at the top & the text saying to send in your own stuff by email. Perhaps resize/reposition it.

    Keep up the good work on your website. I'm sure with time it will improve a lot. I believe mine has improved incredibly over the past year.
     
  5. SuperCachetes macrumors 6502a

    SuperCachetes

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    Away from you
    #5
    I like the header/logo as well.

    As you get into the meat of the site, the ads get a little distracting, simply because they are white (or at least were when I visited) against the white site background - it gets hard to tell what is advertising and what is content. That is a valid (and annoying) strategy on commercial websites, but I doubt it's intentional in your case. That said, I wouldn't change the background color, so I guess I really have no suggestion. ;)

    What I really don't like is that there are so many ways to get to the same content, each in a different font and location. On one page, there were three different ways to get to the "top ten list" area: up top, in the squares, and along the bottom. I know you are probably going for a consistent header and/or footer across all pages, but IMHO it's more confusing than it is convenient - or consistent. If you were trying to make the site look more vast, you may have accomplished that - but if you are showing off your cleverness at organization, I'm not sure the multiple link vectors are putting your best foot forward. Anyway, my advice is worth exactly what you paid for it. Good luck.
     
  6. Mitchelino macrumors 6502

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    #6
    Totally agree with this part. Although it looks nice having both, they shouldn't overlap. From what I was told a while ago, the default navigation menu is bad. Here's an excerpt from iWebFAQ.org:
    I wont lie, when I used iWeb I have both the default nav menu and my own custom one at the bottom. It might be a good idea to remove the default nav menu and create your own at the top (I eventually did that, and it worked nicely). Click here for more info on iWeb nav menus.

    As for your photos providing the links, perhaps make a photo for one of your specific top 10 lists, or a specific product review, that way the viewer gets sent directly to a page that would normally take 2 clicks.
     
  7. NumeroTen thread starter macrumors member

    NumeroTen

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    #7
    Yes

    yes, adsense has been a great help its pay for my hosting and domain name, but as of now barely anything else. On some text i did see the random ad placements, and those were my test ads when i first got adsense which i forgot to remove. So thx for the reminder haha, but for my other content the ads have been in similar positions. However, I'm still not as consistent with adding comment boxes to all my pages
     
  8. NumeroTen thread starter macrumors member

    NumeroTen

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    #8
    Also, to Mitchelino I did realize this, and also through iwebfaqs about how bad the nav bar on iweb is since it doesn't allow it to be crawled by bots since it is taken as a picture, and that is why i created the bottom nav bar. However, I haven't had much luck on creating a better nav bar so i wouldn't need the bottom one anymore. the nav bars turn out to be unappealing and don't blend well so il try to make a better one again thx!
     
  9. Mitchelino macrumors 6502

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    Jun 24, 2009
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #9
    As an example, here's how I did my nav menu originally:

    Home | About | Page | Links | Blog | Music | Contact

    It was basically one text box with all that text, just with links added. Eventually I made round-rectangle shapes as buttons, and added text inside them, then used those as nav menu buttons. It looked alright, but didn't load well on all browsers (surprisingly Safari was one of those browsers).
     
  10. avro707 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2010
    #10
    I can see you are using an image map for navigation. You don't need to do this.

    Try text links instead and have them float.

    Also, on your http://numeroten.com/Writers_Blog/Writers_Blog.html page - the navigation at the bottom of the page overlaps the content above it. In technical terms, it doesn't clear the content above it.

    Maybe it's because I use Adblock for Firefox and that could be removing your adverts.

    Have the blog entries sit inside a div, and have that clear:both, that should force any other DIVs after it down to the next level.

    You are also using quite a few inline styles too, you should move them into a separate stylesheet - this will make the code cleaner.

    Have a look on the web for some CSS website tutorials, they'll serve you well.
     
  11. Mitchelino macrumors 6502

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    #11
    I see this, too. I don't have any Adblock or anything like that. He just needs to drag the text box down a little.

    He's using an iWeb blog so he has absolutely no way of changing this (that I am aware of). The problem with iWeb is the inability to edit code details like that. Unless he manually edited the published code, but I am not sure how comfortable he is with code.

    This is a reason to upgrade from iWeb, as it doesn't offer a way (or easy way) to do things like this.
     
  12. avro707 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2010
    #12
    I'm not really familiar with iWeb - so I'm not very aware of what it can or can not do. I generally use the code view of Dreamweaver (or Simpletext/notepad if needed), and Firebug too. YSlow for Firebug is handy.

    NumeroTen: If you decide to have a play around with code in some sort of text editor and get stuck, I'm happy to help out.
     
  13. Mitchelino macrumors 6502

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    #13
    iWeb is quite limited in what it can do. You can't edit any HTML or CSS within iWeb, as it makes you choose from provided website themes. iWeb just gives templates and lets you fill in your information. I think manually editing the files is the only way to go about custom coding.
     
  14. NumeroTen thread starter macrumors member

    NumeroTen

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    #14
    Coding

    i have no prior experiance with coding... In highschool there is a coding a class, but it doesn't really get into much with coding and i don't think i can take it until junior year. So basically i have no experiance, but i will put in the hours to learning just as long as a general basis is provided thxxx
     
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