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Website overhaul....

Discussion in 'Digital Marketing' started by EA Quinn, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. EA Quinn

    EA Quinn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 393

    Just completed a major website overhaul. Take a look and let me know what you think. This took a lot of time and effort. Who would've thought websites needed so much input?

  2. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,830

    Your site has fallen victim to the strangest phenomena I see coming out of professional web companies. Your logo, which is at the core of your branding, looks terrible. I will never understand why so many of them do this, but it's a serious disservice to the client. Usually it's a flat color logo, which should be a .png or .gif, saved as a .jpg, resulting in the dithering effect (those little grainy dots all over your logo). This time it's actually a correct format for your style of logo, but it's either over-compressed or it was a bad source .jpg that was saved as a .png. Even if it was a bad source file originally supplied by you, there's no reason any decent graphic designer couldn't recreate that.

    I tend to try to not get subjective when reviewing a site, preferring to stick to fact-backed thoughts, but that entire top banner space, and it's components, seems underwhelming disjointed from the rest of the site.

    When I peek under the hood, I immediately see some glaring issues that are inexcusable to be produced by a professional web company.

    You home page has 7 <H1> tags. Inexplicably, your landscape design-services page has 0 <H1> tags.

    The description meta tag for your home page is simply way too long.

    While the site and content look good on the surface, I'd say that when a company you hired drops the ball on your logo, your description meta tag, and your H1 tags (three main components to a site), there are likely more issues to look for.

    I'd be more than happy to expand on anything.

  3. EA Quinn

    EA Quinn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 393

    Well I guess you let me know your thoughts.....
  4. greg8872

    greg8872 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    On top of what Tony mentioned, there are other structural issues with the code behind your site, for the most part small, but as mentioned, not something you would expect from a website design company. Other than the possibility of client edited content, as site (especially new) has no reason not to validate.

    Some of the items are really basic HTML issues such as a < meta > tag that is not only outside of the < head > section of the site (where it needs to be), but completely outside of the < html > tags, list it was just thrown in as after thought (and since it is one to "fix" the way a site looks in one version of IE to compensate, probably was thrown is after everything was done and they noticed it broken on another version) [Note, using the tag isn't a bad thing, just explaining how it probably got tossed into the wrong place, dang IE fault]

    Overall I like the look of the site, main content is nice and balanced to me, however I would make the phone number and "serving" text a little more noticeable for people first coming to the site to find easier. The header really visually draws away from the rest of the site to me, the rest is nice and bright, and it just really doesn't blend well for me.

    Your gallery of work is one of the nicest I have seen for sites on this forum so far.

    I would provide ALT values for all the images in the footer, this is my preference though.

    Bad links on the site:
    http://www.eaquinn.com/home.aspx calls http://www.eaquinn.com/css/ie6.css which doesn't exist

    http://www.eaquinn.com/css/main.css calls http://www.eaquinn.com/css/PIE.htc, http://www.eaquinn.com/images/search-bkgd2.png and http://www.eaquinn.com/js/iepngfix.htc which do not exist

    http://www.eaquinn.com/css/nav.css calls http://www.eaquinn.com/images/leftnavheaderarrow.png, http://www.eaquinn.com/images/dropdownbgwhite2.png and http://www.eaquinn.com/images/dropdownbg2.jpg which do not exist

    http://www.eaquinn.com/css/screen.css calls http://www.eaquinn.com/images/sliderArrow_left.png and http://www.eaquinn.com/images/sliderArrow_right.png which do not exist

    http://www.eaquinn.com/css/stylish-select-interior.css calls http://www.eaquinn.com/images/select-bkgd-inner.png which doesn't exist.

    Spelling issues on the site:
    archetects should be architects

    firstvisual should be first visual

    humourus should be humorous

    http://www.eaquinn.com/landscape-management/lawn-installation-and-renovation.aspx in the alt text for the main image, same as for on http://www.eaquinn.com/landscape-management.aspx for the image to "Lawn Installation and Renovation"
    Installization should be Installation

    http://www.eaquinn.com/galleries/snow-Ice-management-photos.aspx for the last image (#17) in the code twice, plus the actual link in three places
    managment should be management

    reflectyour should be reflect your

    variousmulches should be various mulches
  5. EA Quinn

    EA Quinn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 393

    Those are good catches. Some of those errors were mine. I am still getting used to using sitefinity. It is pretty nice to be able to make changes through-out the year though.
  6. tonygreek

    tonygreek LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,830

    If the logo issue falls under your responsibility, and not your site designer, feel free to PM me and I'll get you squared away. In looking at your truck signage, etc, I'll assume you have it in some high-res format that you use for print media, and it would only take me a minute to get it properly formatted for your web site.

    For the benefit of everyone, Re: the <H1> issue I pointed out... For those unsure of it's intended use, it's the html element that defines the main subject of your page. If you have a sub-page dedicated to mowing, your content heading might be something like <H1>Our Mowing Services</H1>, with sub services under <H2> and so on, down to an <H6>, as they get less important. You are more than welcome to use multiple instances of anything <H2> and lower.

    Repeated occurrences of <H1>, which should only be used to point out one or two key pieces on any one page, can have a negative reaction from the search engines as they view it as gaming the system. Years ago this worked for a bit, and then the search algorithms were adjusted to discount their repeated use. (As a side note, this may change with the adoption of html5, and how it utilizes the <H1> in a bit different way. I would assume the engines' algorithms will take into account whether the site is html5 or not, if they're not doing so already.)

    more: http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/struct/global.html#edef-H1

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