Might as well critique mine also.

Discussion in 'Digital Marketing' started by phillie, Jan 15, 2012.

  1. boisephc

    boisephc LawnSite Member
    Messages: 34

    agreed. the website is not valid xhtml.
  2. phillie

    phillie LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 861

    You can only see my estimate page right? I took every thing down except it. Should have something new up later tonight. Not completed but at least some layouts
  3. phillie

    phillie LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 861

    Ok, I have the new layout and most of the site done.. Hows it look?
  4. consultantnomo

    consultantnomo LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    Looks good, but you still have the issue of using images as text, as opposed to text as text. For example, your 6-Step fertilizer page has all of the detail as an image.

    As a quick and dirty example, this is how search engines will see the Step 1 info on your page:

    <td colspan="5">
    <img src="images/6steps_29.png" width="783" height="82" alt="" />

    Not really keyword-rich content, as I'm sure you'd agree. What the search engines should be seeing is this:

    <td colspan="5">
    Pre-Emergent + Fertilizer: Helps prevent crabgrass all season long and promotes a faster Spring green-up.

    You can still have the same look, using the image background as, well, a background, and then using CSS to overlay your text.

    Added: I'd also look at adding your Twitter feed Specials and Services info to the actual content of your page. What you have on Twitter so far should be on your page, boosting your relevant content, and subsequent engine rankings, when people search for related services online.
  5. hawghunter

    hawghunter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    I would sign up with you if I didnt work in the lawn care industry. Ha
  6. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    You did this yourself?? Not bad!

    I love the way you included the pickup on the page. That's cool, seems to be trendy these days. That's similar to the intro we did on our facebook page. I've seen one or two other sites who incorporated this idea too. I like it!

    The menus are a little hoaky. One thing to keep in mind is you always want to check your site out in both of the main browsers that people use these days (Internet Explorer and Firefox). Maybe Chrome too. In Firefox, the drop-down menus come off looking really screwy. That's a code problem. I don't know how to fix it. But that's something I'd get fixed. Another thing is this photo keeps scrolling over the page that says something like, "click here to request a free estimate." But whenever I click anywhere on that image - nothing happens in firefox.

    In internet explorer (I'm using version 8.0) the scrolling photos in the middle of the page didn't even appear at all for me. In fact, in the lower left corner of the page, IE said, "Done. But with errors on the page." So there are definitely some coding errors that need to be addressed. This is where a professional website designer is handy. They know how to handle all this stuff and code everything correctly so that it comes out looking good on any browser.

    The font used for the menu items is a little too plain and too small. At the very least, make the font size larger for the main menu. And maybe bold. Or use a nicer looking font. Not one with too much style. But something a little less blocky and easier on the eye.

    I always hate sites that have the little weather data on the page, like you have in the lower right. Just seems unnecessary and something I usually see on more home-made or amateurish sites. People didn't come to the page to get the latest weather. They want to read about your company and what you can do for them. Use that space better.

    I love the contrast in colors on the page. It looks especially stunning when the photo of grass is on the page. The red-green-blue combination at that point is really nice looking.

    The logo in the top left should be a little larger, IMO. You want people to remember you company name and logo. Emphasize it more.

    Otherwise, you've done a lot right on this page. The color is nice. The phone number at the top is perfect. The image of the pickup is really slick. The menu in the bottom left looks very nice and professional. I like the fact that you don't have to scroll down forever to read the entire page. It's nice and concise.

    The one other thing I think you are missing on the home page is some text. There is almost no text on the page for search engine bots to grab on to. Search engine bots are looking for key words and phrases on the page to tell them what your page is about. So when people search for those words, the bot knows to post up your page as one of the results. Get a paragraph or two on the home page somewhere with some info. about your company, what town(s) you service, what some of the main items you do are, etc.

    That's my 2 cents.
  7. phillie

    phillie LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 861

    Hey guys, thanks for the input. I have found these issues as well and am in the process of working with my roommate to correct the page. He's learning as we go, all I can do is say what I like, what I want on the page and give ideas on the layout. We know some of the issues are just links and little piddly things. We will keep truckin and see what we come up with after a few days.
  8. kirkmbrown2001

    kirkmbrown2001 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 265

    This is the view on my phone with javascript enabled:

    View on my phone with javascript disabled:

    MANY mobile phones aren't javascript compatible. Also, since you have alot of images on your site, load times on a phone may suffer.

    My opinion, make a mobile version of your site!
  9. phillie

    phillie LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 861

    Thanks Kirk, I'll have to look into it. I have already spent more time on my site than I wanted to. I may only have time to get the links in the carasel working and my keyword optimization up and running. Im not sure how to get my site on the front page but I am going to try. Right now I think I am on page 15.
  10. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    I'm guilty of not creating a mobile version of my site. Although I've checked it out and most of it works pretty well on my mobile phone.

    The thing is, I don't really see it being all that much of a problem. The biggest part of our business is landscape construction. Typical client will spend between $10K - $30K. I just don't see that client getting on their cell phone to find the contractor who they want to spend that kind of money with and then making the call. I think they'd probably take a little more time and look us up in a little more detail on a real computer before they consider dropping that kind of scratch.

    The second biggest item we do is weekly maintenance. And I feel similar about that scenario too.

    I think it's really common for people to use cell phones to find a restaurant, shop, salon, shipping center, the closest red box, etc. But I don't envision too many people looking up their contractor on a phone and then making a call just based on the [very little] they were able to see on a 2" wide screen.

    So I'm not so convinced that it's all that important for companies in our industry to have a mobile site.

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