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Come on... show us your sites...

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Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2004 10:29 am
by xFasterMikeyH
Laurence, I didn't realise that your site was a corporate site, my comments on it were about it being a 'music' site (I thought that 'projects' related to whatever music you're working on and 'studio' would be pictures of your studio). Bearing that in mind, might be as well to ignore my pearls of wisdom.

I guess the main thing for you to think about it is who you're selling to. I personally like the cuckoo thing, but if I were looking for someone to make me a business website that would probably put me off.

Sorry to have confused things further!

FMH

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2004 12:40 pm
by GlynB
xFasterMikeyH wrote:Laurence, I didn't realise that your site was a corporate site, my comments on it were about it being a 'music' site (I thought that 'projects' related to whatever music you're working on and 'studio' would be pictures of your studio). Bearing that in mind, might be as well to ignore my pearls of wisdom.

I guess the main thing for you to think about it is who you're selling to. I personally like the cuckoo thing, but if I were looking for someone to make me a business website that would probably put me off.

Sorry to have confused things further!

FMH

Yes, me too, I assumed it was a music site. If you're a design consultancy or whatever then I guess the layout is OK, but surely if you're into design you should be coming up with something novel or unusual?

I rather like the 'bird' examples of pages for a design company, it shows an example of... er.. design!

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2004 5:22 pm
by Rob C
The design question really comes down to how people use your site and what your message is. Unless you need to impress people in some way or hit them with a strong message it's difficult to spice up the design without getting contrived or distracting. On a music site you do need a focussed image and holistic feel, but for a general utility or information site sometimes bland is the right thing... as long as you spell out what's going on.

Broadly speaking, don't spend time on design that doesn't serve any purpose... but you need to make that call yourself. Second opinions are always useful.

One thing I'd take from the feedback on Laurence's main site is that the purpose and message could be stronger on page one. Will people think: what is MSWeb? What do they do?

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Sun Jan 02, 2005 10:31 pm
by forumuser637535
One thing I've realised about my web-browsing is that I don't like, or usually don't read the nav buttons, especially if there are too many or it's not obvious what they take me to straight away.

Buttons that say "about" are a bit cryptic, for example.
My tip to designers would be to make your nav buttons totally transparent to the eye. Try using 2-3 words if it clarifies exactly what it is the target page is. Deciphering buttons is NOT something people can be bothered doing a lot of the time.

Also, remember that your first page is your first impression: the customer is not interested in you, he's interested in HIMSELF. Reel him in by simply offering the benefits HE could be experiencing were he to use your service/product, then he'll give you more of his time.
g

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 4:11 pm
by Darryl
The Urban Myth Club

http://www.urbanmythclub.com

Like this site alot, very clean and polished, good content and I also like the music samples.

Darryl
www.glideascope.com

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 4:33 pm
by Rob C
I don't share your button thing entirely Greg but I know what you mean. I normally click them to see (if I'm interested in the site) but don't really read them and think.

I'm happy with "About" though, it's one of the things I look for on a new site, and there's a kind of convention that About, FAQ, What's new, Site map, Contact, etc. on the home page usually mean the same on every site. Certainly, "about" isn't very descriptive, but we know it means here's some info about the purpose of this site and who we are.

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2005 4:40 pm
by Darryl
Here's my site for review:

www.glideascope.com

This was the second version completed around 8 months ago, would appreciate your thoughts and comments.

Glideascope
www.glideascope.com

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2005 1:04 pm
by GlynB
*gregster* wrote:One thing I've realised about my web-browsing is that I don't like, or usually don't read the nav buttons, especially if there are too many or it's not obvious what they take me to straight away.

Buttons that say "about" are a bit cryptic, for example.
My tip to designers would be to make your nav buttons totally transparent to the eye. Try using 2-3 words if it clarifies exactly what it is the target page is. Deciphering buttons is NOT something people can be bothered doing a lot of the time.

Also, remember that your first page is your first impression: the customer is not interested in you, he's interested in HIMSELF. Reel him in by simply offering the benefits HE could be experiencing were he to use your service/product, then he'll give you more of his time.
g

I think it maybe depends how experienced the visitor is?
I mean there are some kind of 'standard' buttons that I expect to be there and I know what I expect to see when i click them.

Contact - I expect to see contact information, address, email, etc.

About - I expect an explanantion of what the company or the site is 'about'

Gallery - usualy photos of the artist or product

Links - links to other associated sites

Blog - biographical log

News - obvious

Home button - to return to the home page

I think if people keep to these type of conventions then there shouldn't be too much problem in knowing what they're for and finding your way around?

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2005 8:16 pm
by forumuser637535
yep, agree Glyn. That is pretty conventional. I think that the "about" button is the only one that has unclear connotations, convention or not! "Background" perhaps???, or "history"?
I think that any band that takes itself seriously would consider having a "press" page (unless they were already well known). It is pretty difficult to assert originality but maintain a conventionally practical approach. Anyone seen sites that do this? I'll start a new thread:
"band websites that you like"
I have to say that I quite like the "ween" website (although I can only remember that it kept me interested enough to actually read it!)
g

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Thu Jan 06, 2005 11:12 pm
by Armadillo
Still slightly under construction. Sorry, I mean constantly updated and improved. www.wireempire.com

Feel free to give me some feedback. :)

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2005 9:50 am
by forumuser637535
Armadillo wrote:Still slightly under construction. Sorry, I mean constantly updated and improved. www.wireempire.com

Feel free to give me some feedback. :)

I am 512kbs, loaded fine. Simple, easy to follow from first impressions. Audio link didn't work for me (maybe it's not running yet?) I don't like the keyboard picture in the main image. The setup looks untidy and "home-studio" esque. Obviously, you don't want to mislead people, but I'd be wary of pictures of CRT monitors, which are Soooo last year in terms of studio image.

Oh, hang on. The music just started after about 2 minutes of waiting... hmm. maybe a bit long.
I'd recommend having an instant loop that plays a couple of times that originated from your studio, with a clear option to turn it off.

Also, I don't know about the "list of songs_and their styles" idea. I've been toying with this as well, but I honestly don't know if people will be interested...I don't think that people like to think of being "pigeonholed listeners". It does depend on what your target market is I suppose. If they are clients looking for factory styles for corporate videos etc then it might be ok. If you're trying to "sell" your work as commercially viable stuff, I'd go with the "integral media player" option. By all means have a downloads page for samples (for people who really want a decent hifi version of your work), but I'd put a radio player on there with lo-fi samples playing automatically until they're switched off.

Those are just my thoughts. I'm being a bit more picky because I feel that your site design skills and musical skills obviously are of a standard to make these smaller things of importance.

good1
g

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2005 2:10 pm
by Armadillo
Dammit. just spent 20 min. writing a reply and then IE crashes. :madas:
Thanks a lot for being thorough. 8-)

*gregster* wrote:
I am 512kbs, loaded fine. Simple, easy to follow from first impressions. Audio link didn't work for me (maybe it's not running yet?) I don't like the keyboard picture in the main image. The setup looks untidy and "home-studio" esque. Obviously, you don't want to mislead people, but I'd be wary of pictures of CRT monitors, which are Soooo last year in terms of studio image.

Well it is a home studio, and all my hardware is probably worth less than £2000 (2nd hand anyway), so I don't really know how else to represent it.

Oh, hang on. The music just started after about 2 minutes of waiting... hmm. maybe a bit long.
I'd recommend having an instant loop that plays a couple of times that originated from your studio, with a clear option to turn it off.

Hmm... strange, it should stream almost instantly. I'd like to know if other people are experiencing the same problem.
Don't like the loop thing. The page will take longer to load and a short loop gets annoying quite fast.

Also, I don't know about the "list of songs_and their styles" idea. I've been toying with this as well, but I honestly don't know if people will be interested...I don't think that people like to think of being "pigeonholed listeners". It does depend on what your target market is I suppose. If they are clients looking for factory styles for corporate videos etc then it might be ok. If you're trying to "sell" your work as commercially viable stuff, I'd go with the "integral media player" option. By all means have a downloads page for samples (for people who really want a decent hifi version of your work), but I'd put a radio player on there with lo-fi samples playing automatically until they're switched off.

I like pigeonholes. Often in eg. "sound files" on SOS, I can't be arsed to listen to the music cause I don't know if it's a genre I like. I wouldn't eg. listen to country or indie. It's just a waste of time imo listening to songs just to find out that musically they are as far away from anything you listen as it could be.

Lo-fi option would be nice though. Will look into that.

What is my market? Good question. Within the last year I've been trying to start up a nu-metal/breakbeat band, been producing euro trance with a singer, been looking to go into library music, and trying to start up a RnB project.

Those are just my thoughts. I'm being a bit more picky because I feel that your site design skills and musical skills obviously are of a standard to make these smaller things of importance.

good1
g


Thanks in regards to musical skills.
Web design skills however, are not as good as they might seem. Basically, I've bought a template, edited it, new text, images, added links etc. nothing major.
To be honest I'm not sure if I can add a dedicated player etc. :blush:

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2005 6:08 pm
by Armadillo
Gregster:
You didn't mention that the "services" link didn't work, and neither did "showreels". :D Under construction. I think

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2005 7:51 pm
by Mike Duguid
the music started playing after about 5 seconds here (512 adsl). It's a shame there's no indication along the nature of 'streaming started, please wait while buffering.." just so the viewer has visual feedback that something is happening.

Re: Come on... show us your sites...

PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2005 10:44 pm
by PWGLE
I had 2 hours spare, so I started redesigning my site...

http://msweb.co.uk/mswebv6/

Any comments, thoughts...
or ideas how to make it in the middle! of the page!
Laurence