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  #11  
Old 02-26-2012, 08:42 PM
tonygreek's Avatar
tonygreek tonygreek is offline
LawnSite Silver Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Lancaster, PA
Posts: 2,635
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chilehead View Post
The first upgrade will likely be a .com URL.
That shouldn't be a "likely". It should be an "asap" as the domain is available and if you track down a coupon code for a registrar like GoDaddy, you can get it for 8 bucks or so a year.
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  #12  
Old 02-27-2012, 02:05 AM
greg8872 greg8872 is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Upper Arlington, Ohio
Posts: 270
Besides what was already said...

You may want to get rid if the Lesco link at the bottom until they get their site fixed. (Currently is is crashing out with Microsoft's lovely error messages)

The form on the right, I don't get why you set it to not have inputs wide enough to see the whole phone numbers, the inputs above it are wide enough.

Also, the use of a radio button for the "Yes I'd like an estimate"; it should be a checkbox. Radio buttons are used to pick from a group, checkboxes are for on/off of individual items. (if you select that you'd like and estimate, you cannot deselect it currently)

I get that you are probably using free hosting as well, so this may be something you are stuck with, but the Craptcha (ok, it is called Captcha) after you submit the form is an awkward flow. You probably got a blank e-mail from me since all I entered was the captcha text. [Note, I call it craptcha, as I think it is a crappy way of dealing with spam postings, and usually can take a nice looking layout and make it look like crap. As a programmer, I use other techniques that handle the bots.]

The structure to create the pages, such as the About page, has single sentences broken up into different paragraph tags, so unless you view it at the specific font settings you had looked at is when making it, they break in the wrong places. To see an example how it breaks, hold down CTRL and press + once or twice. Remember, not everyone browses with the settings you have, and different browsers can have a different "default" font size. (do CTRL - 0 (zero) to return back to default size)

No surprise, but the site doesn't validate. (makes the browser have to work harder to figure out what it was meant to be, possibly using more memory and taking longer to load. especially on mobile devices)

The blue for the links is very hard to read against the black background.

On the Job Application, you should use a PDF instead of a MS Word file. There is a much higher percentage of people that have a PDF viewer (just about every computer in past 7 years has it installed) versus the people who have Word or something like Open Office that can open it. It is not designed to be filled out in word without having to mess with the formatting a lot, and well, again a issue of the user needing to have the same exact settings you have to see it the way you intended. See the attached file for how it looks when I open it up, since you are not using standard fonts. Saving is as a PDF will give you the best results. It is free, google "PDF995" it is a free program that installs a "print driver" that makes PDF's. The free version just pops a ad each time you make a PDF (final pdf has no ads when opened)

It took me a sec to figure out the image on the right side of the Services Page, text in it hard to read (it wasn't rendered well for the web site), but once I figured it out, I liked it, can see where this is helpful. Cleaned up would really be nice. I did question that an Annual item was shown for twice a year ;-)

I liked most of your portfolio pics, gave good examples of finished work. I do like seeing "Before" and "After" pics, but still pretty good.

So in the end, I think the majority of issues is the editor you are using, Serif WebPlus. Usually programs for making web pages under $100 just don't make the best sites. when it comes to WYSIWYG, it is also YGWYPF **. I think it is good you recognize that you need to work on it once you can afford better though, just be sure to not let it slip through the cracks and forget to get it updated ASAP, both the site, and the domain.

Lastly, I would suggest adding the google analytics code to EVERY page on the site, currently you have it only tracking the frame for the site. With only tracking the call to the .TK domain linke (home page), over time you will loose valuable data (landing pages on the site, where they went through the site, what page they left your site). Also,the listing you talked about coming up high for, was (for me) google places listing, that went to directly to the pages you are calling in the frame, so you will have no tracking of this, nor what search terms lead me to that.

On Kirk's example of having two domains, and one just points to the other one, there is a better alternative, and that is to create a landing page that is keyword targeted for the other url, that links back to the main site. Not only do you now have another page you can rank with, google will see it as links between sites which weighs more than internal links. Any little bit helps!

Well there is my few cents worth as I'm trying to relax to go to sleep, hope it helps.

-Greg

** WYSIWYG = What You See Is What You Get, YGWYPF = You Get What You Pay For
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  #13  
Old 02-27-2012, 09:37 AM
Chilehead's Avatar
Chilehead Chilehead is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Stockbridge, GA
Posts: 1,847
Quote:
Originally Posted by greg8872 View Post
Besides what was already said...

You may want to get rid if the Lesco link at the bottom until they get their site fixed. (Currently is is crashing out with Microsoft's lovely error messages)

The form on the right, I don't get why you set it to not have inputs wide enough to see the whole phone numbers, the inputs above it are wide enough.

Also, the use of a radio button for the "Yes I'd like an estimate"; it should be a checkbox. Radio buttons are used to pick from a group, checkboxes are for on/off of individual items. (if you select that you'd like and estimate, you cannot deselect it currently)

I get that you are probably using free hosting as well, so this may be something you are stuck with, but the Craptcha (ok, it is called Captcha) after you submit the form is an awkward flow. You probably got a blank e-mail from me since all I entered was the captcha text. [Note, I call it craptcha, as I think it is a crappy way of dealing with spam postings, and usually can take a nice looking layout and make it look like crap. As a programmer, I use other techniques that handle the bots.]

The structure to create the pages, such as the About page, has single sentences broken up into different paragraph tags, so unless you view it at the specific font settings you had looked at is when making it, they break in the wrong places. To see an example how it breaks, hold down CTRL and press + once or twice. Remember, not everyone browses with the settings you have, and different browsers can have a different "default" font size. (do CTRL - 0 (zero) to return back to default size)

No surprise, but the site doesn't validate. (makes the browser have to work harder to figure out what it was meant to be, possibly using more memory and taking longer to load. especially on mobile devices)

The blue for the links is very hard to read against the black background.

On the Job Application, you should use a PDF instead of a MS Word file. There is a much higher percentage of people that have a PDF viewer (just about every computer in past 7 years has it installed) versus the people who have Word or something like Open Office that can open it. It is not designed to be filled out in word without having to mess with the formatting a lot, and well, again a issue of the user needing to have the same exact settings you have to see it the way you intended. See the attached file for how it looks when I open it up, since you are not using standard fonts. Saving is as a PDF will give you the best results. It is free, google "PDF995" it is a free program that installs a "print driver" that makes PDF's. The free version just pops a ad each time you make a PDF (final pdf has no ads when opened)

It took me a sec to figure out the image on the right side of the Services Page, text in it hard to read (it wasn't rendered well for the web site), but once I figured it out, I liked it, can see where this is helpful. Cleaned up would really be nice. I did question that an Annual item was shown for twice a year ;-)

I liked most of your portfolio pics, gave good examples of finished work. I do like seeing "Before" and "After" pics, but still pretty good.

So in the end, I think the majority of issues is the editor you are using, Serif WebPlus. Usually programs for making web pages under $100 just don't make the best sites. when it comes to WYSIWYG, it is also YGWYPF **. I think it is good you recognize that you need to work on it once you can afford better though, just be sure to not let it slip through the cracks and forget to get it updated ASAP, both the site, and the domain.

Lastly, I would suggest adding the google analytics code to EVERY page on the site, currently you have it only tracking the frame for the site. With only tracking the call to the .TK domain linke (home page), over time you will loose valuable data (landing pages on the site, where they went through the site, what page they left your site). Also,the listing you talked about coming up high for, was (for me) google places listing, that went to directly to the pages you are calling in the frame, so you will have no tracking of this, nor what search terms lead me to that.

On Kirk's example of having two domains, and one just points to the other one, there is a better alternative, and that is to create a landing page that is keyword targeted for the other url, that links back to the main site. Not only do you now have another page you can rank with, google will see it as links between sites which weighs more than internal links. Any little bit helps!

Well there is my few cents worth as I'm trying to relax to go to sleep, hope it helps.

-Greg

** WYSIWYG = What You See Is What You Get, YGWYPF = You Get What You Pay For
Thank you very much for your input.
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