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finally getting SOMETHING published

Discussion in 'Digital Marketing' started by birddseedd, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. birddseedd

    birddseedd LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,111

  2. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,830

    Re: the header, is that your developer making the changes based on your feedback or is that your effort? I think I'm confused as to what services you bartered for, so I'm not sure what recommendations to make.
  3. birddseedd

    birddseedd LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,111

    The changes you see i made. although i just sent the file to the guy thats doing most of the work. he will redo the header from the original file so the lettering does not have rough edges. I have him the basic design. he is writing the code for the layout. he will also write the code to make the images on the right scroll, then pop up full page the way google does. on the top of them ill have some kind of get a quote button that will show up on each page.
  4. greg8872

    greg8872 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    This is going off of index2.html page, and since you traded services, I'm writing on the consideration that this is paid work...

    First, as Tony pointed out, the page needs to validate. It really gets me as a developer the number of people who launch news sites made by someone that right out the gate do not validate or have spelling issues. For a fresh launched site, there just is no excuse for either of these (now, one the client has control over their site, year they may do things via an editor to break it, that is out of the developers control). Tony gave the site that does validation, here is direct results to your page: http://validator.w3.org/check?verbose=1&uri=http://www.oasisinkalamazoo.com/index2.html

    BTW, to clear it up, I'm not saying there are issues with spelling, that was just mentioned as one of the two pet peeves i have about a bad launch. For those who were talking about it, what is on the site is "Lorem ipsum" filler text. It is used by developers so the client can have some idea what the flow of the text will look like on the site while it is being developed.

    Three things really stand out to me on the header. First your logo, it really messes with me that the shadow of the text is thicker that the text that is supposed to be producing the shadow, and it looks like it was made on a white background and cropped out and brought over, (see the white between the green letter and grey shadow on the large O, I think this is what Tony was referring to.) Second on the header is the leaves on the left, I'm not good on the right terms for it, but the colors are washed out or something, like brightness/contrast is way off. For me, this then also carried visually down to the image below it of the guy mowing. Alone, that image looks fine, together on the page, just messes with my view somehow. Lastly on the header, other than the phone number, you have no information in there for search engines to grab, and visually there is nothing to tell me what area you are in, let alone letting search engines find it. Having a graphic header is fine, but you need something to let non visual visitors know.

    See http://www.domaintools.com/seo-browser/?domain=http://www.oasisinkalamazoo.com/index2.html for an example. (Note, for some reason it isn't following the link directly to index2.html, not sure why, so in the "address bar" you need to add it in. Strange, never had that issue before). Notice how your header looks now?

    The main content, I would add more spacing between your H1 and the green bar above it, and add a little more padding to the left side of the main content. The right column, seems like that is still being worked on, so I'm skipping that. The footer at the bottom, I normally like to repeat the main navigation, and also repeat your company information again. Oh, just noticed, you use the & character in the footer, that needs to be & which is the proper HTML Entity for it. For beginners, that link is a good list of the basic ones to use. (well, they do leave off another important one, " for " )
  5. birddseedd

    birddseedd LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,111

    THanks for the tips. I am waiting on the final logo. that should look better. im also going to scale the size of hte header down a bit.

    ill have the markup changed so the name will be text. can css put a shadow on text?
  6. greg8872

    greg8872 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    Yes, here is a site I use for anything fancy: http://css3generator.com/ (use 'Text Shaddow')
  7. grandview (2006)

    grandview (2006) LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,465

  8. birddseedd

    birddseedd LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,111

    yes, but there aint no dang way im putting an image of my banged up truck up there till i get the rusted wheel wells replaced.
  9. PaperCutter

    PaperCutter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,996

    Just a quick mention on the logo - ideally with a logo you want something that can be reproduced in a variety of media, and a black and white or grayscale option is great too (for example, I printed off handouts for a talk last night - I wasn't about to pay to run off 50 color copies just for my logo).

    You have a LOT of fine detail in your logo, subtle color shifts from one leaf to the next, and gradients. In b&w or even grayscale it's going to be a muddy mess, embroidery (and possibly screen printing) won't look like your logo, and I don't know how well those gradients can be reproduced on vehicle lettering, jobsite signs, etc.

    Even if you don't have a need for these options this year, changing all your branded collateral sucks. Shoot, I moved my office and had to reprint all my business cards and stationery.
  10. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,830

    Birdd, you mentioned you are "waiting on the final logo". Could you clarify this? Is this being professionally done and you're waiting, or, I'm waiting until the site is done and then doing it to work with the design? This is why it's difficult to weigh in on "in-process" projects.

    The logo is one of the things I was getting at when I asked about who is responsible for what with the site. If you want to be ready for print, as PaperCutter points out, you can't use .jpg or .gif elements to create your logo. In looking at the quality, I'm guessing that you're working with a jpg or gif of leaves you found on the web and not the original, vector source material. You want to create a vector image and then convert that for the web. It doesn't work to do it the other way around.

    Hard truth follows, so if you are in love with your site, just skip this...

    With the direction the site seems to be taking, and given where the header and art stands at this moment, there is a lot of effort being put in to create a site that looks like it was built in 1998. I don't say that to be difficult, because I know the effort you guys put in to your sites, albeit this one is being partially done by a "professional", but it seems there's a lot of time suck going in to a project that could be best handled in other ways that provide a clean, modern piece of marketing for you. This is at the core of my previous question of "What are you getting from the web guy in return for the services you provided him?". I've seen his portfolio (at least the thumbnails. I was 0/5 on randomly trying to find a live site to look at) , and this just seems representative of his overall work, as he's simply not a web designer. Depending on your barter value, I don't see anything that implies a direction and cost that couldn't be accomplished with a nice, modern, $15 template. Where it currently sits, that's 15 minutes of effort from any competent web developer/designer, whereas I would guess the work time and value you provided him was significantly greater.

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