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#1 steelmanronald06

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 03:16 AM

Once more I am back. Yes it is another Geekz site. you might all remember my first site, NetGeekz, and my later on site Lampgeekz, but hey I am a Geek. [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/laugh.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":laugh:\" border=\"0\" alt=\"laugh.gif\" /] Anyways, this is my latest addition to our network of sites, and I want comments. It is a web-hosting site, yes another one of those, but hey I need some money to help fund my sites. So let me narrow on down the comments to the things that will help me.

1) I _SUCK_ at designing. I will admit it plain as day. HTML and CSS are not my thing. I know them, I can use them with excellent skill, but I can't put them together and make them into something pretty or professional. I try my best, but I pretty much suck at it. So if you comment on my layout, wait I know you will, please don't just tell me what needs fixing but kinda guide me into how to fix it. I CANNOT design grahpics, so if it is a grahpic problem don't suggest it unless you know where I can get free grahpics or you wanna make the grahpic. [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/wink.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":wink:\" border=\"0\" alt=\"wink.gif\" /] LOL. Anyways, it would be a big help if you told me what needs fixing and point me in the right direction on how to fix it or else I won't be able to fix it and I will feel as if I have wasted your time.

2) This is a template of sorts. I have taken it and made lots of edits to it, but it is still a template. I have just changed it, alot, so I feel like I can call it my own work. I used the template as a base to work from since I suck at desigining. My question to you is this, which you may want to answer before going with comment 1. Should I scrap this template and do something completely different? If so, give me some ideas. I want to know what YOU think. What would YOU like to see. I want ideas on this. If you think this is a good overall layout, but just needs a bit of tweaking, say so. If you think it is horrible, and I should try something different, tell me, but please suggest what type of layout you had in mind. If you can't give me an idea of a good replacement then please just comment on what you can of this layout.

3) NONE of this is valid W3C that I am aware of. I code as strict as I can get it, but I don't validate until after I get comments. That way when I go fix my problems I don't find myself having to go through the validate process again. I know it is better to validate, but please just leave it at that until I get the layout fixed.

Yeah that is alot to ask for a simple critique, but I am very picky about my sites. I want to provide the best, I do provide the best in hardware and coding, but I feel that design is a big part of what makes my site one of the best as well. Looking forward to hearing your ideas.

LINK: [a href=\"http://webgeekz.netgeekz.net\" target=\"_blank\"]http://webgeekz.netgeekz.net[/a] (thought I forgot it didn't ya?) [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/laugh.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":laugh:\" border=\"0\" alt=\"laugh.gif\" /]

BTW, there are a few things in here that may be spelt weird or have dashes, such as web-hosting. The reason is that is the only way I could get those stupid Kontera (?spelling) links not to show up. I support them, and click them, but I don't like them showing up when I am trying to start a critque for my site. It feels like their trying to throw their own suggestion for a critique into the mix. Yeah, I am weird, but hey I love me!!! :)

#2 redbullmarky

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 10:38 AM

For someone that says they suck at design, I don't think you've done a bad job. the template looks very nice, the colour scheme works.

i only have a few suggestions (which maybe a bit vague as i also suck at design)

1, your navigation. looks very nice until you hover the mouse over it, mainly because of the gap between the dark blue block and the horizontal line of the same colour. i think that the dark blue hover should fill the light blue background vertically. also, the 'home' link - with the light blue 'slope' on the left of it, it just doesnt seem right when i hover over the home link.

2, there is a lot of whitespace on some of your pages. i reckon that possibly a 800px wide container to put the site in would do the trick - as when i view at 1024x768, there's loads of whitespace and it just doesnt feel right, but when i shrink my browser a bit, things look really nice.

3, for the lazy people out here, can you make the 'webgeekz' logo in the top left clickable? when i'm whizzing around a site looking for specifics, i always know that to get 'home' i just click the logo, instead of looking for the 'home' button.

4, the paypal button. ok, so it's under something that mentions $5 domain names, but there's no form to fill in with my name, what i'm ordering, etc BEFORE i go to paypal. also - as you're the admin of this network, i reckon you could use a different email address when you do get through to paypal, just to keep things professional.

overall, with a few little tweaks here and there, i wouldnt have any problems ordering (in theory) if i came across the site. its clean, simple and easy to get to the info i need.

Hope that helps!
Cheers
Mark
"you have to keep pissing in the wind to learn how to keep your shoes dry..."

I say old chap, that is rather amusing!

#3 steviewdr

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 02:15 PM

Hi,

Mark is correct about your email on paypal: hott_guy_1989 at hotmail.com does not look professional at all at all.

Anyhoo onto critique - first impressions - a nice clean business website with the usual blue look and feel.

A few points: 1. your Nav is not great. I would go with a more 3d effect on the Nav. On the bar under the Nav you have a nice 3d gradient - well, ish. I would like to see the Nav bar with a 3d effect. The mouseover is too plain also. I think your Nav bar is too tall - and making your mouseovers with the dark blue look too dark. Also the sloped dark blue area just before home looks jagged, and the mouseover is too close.

I had a guess about your black "more info" | "order" buttons - they are broken in IE.

Your top left logo is a tad small IMO. It would be nicer a little bigger.

NOW - this LEFT DIV - its way too long IMO. Why does the login need to be there? If you are going to keep it there - get rid of all the padding which is pushing everything down.
Even around your Money Back Guarantee picture - there is WAY too much padding above & below.

I see its all tables you are using. Pity you didnt get a better template - without the tables!!

Overall - its ok. Keep the template and look and feel. Work on the Nav menu. Fix up the Left Div.
With an improved top Nav & a bigger more impacting LOGO then you will be better set. That HR in your left DIV above specials looks bad - GET USING CSS.

If your leaving the Login boxes there - style them.

Your Products page needs to be better divided up IMO. Perhaps border *might* be an idea. Get looking at other Products pages on other websites and you'll see some ideas.

Your News page will look terrible with a lot of entries. You have the date hidden at the bottom - IMO the date etc. should be on the top of a News Item.

Its allright. Theres something I cant put my finger on. I dunno is it that that left DIV never changes (usually it changes - because the Left DIV is the Nav. Perhaps the picture of the telesales person should change from page to page etc.?
I'll be back....!

Rgds,
Steve




#4 steelmanronald06

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 02:53 PM

I don't wanna change the paypal email, because that is a secure email address. I don't use that email for anything but paypal and transactions through paypal. That ensures that I know where all my reciepts, etc., are when I need them.

I will see what I can do about all that white space and the left nav being to long. I will take out the login box and put it on a login page, and i will try and fix up the money back logo. I will have to see what I can do in fireworks.

The paypal button itself. That is just telling you that we are PayPal Verified. Meaning I had a paypal rep come check out my site, ensure that it was secure, and we use secure paypal transactions for the saftey of your finanical information. It isn't meant to belong to a form. The five dollar domain name is clickable. Just click on it and it will take you to a domain register page on our site.

Also the logo. I will see what I can do about making the text bigger. Clickable is a doable, but when I try and go bigger on the text it gets fuzzy at the edges. I will look for a font that won't do that if I can find one.

I will see what I can do about dividing up the products page. I have a few ideas on what to do with it, since you mention it, but whether my skills are good enough to pull it off is a completely different story. As for the 3d Nav thing...what? I don't understand graphics or 3d effects or anything. Give me a nice bit of php code to sift through and I am set ;) . J/K. Anyways, can you explain about that part. Also I will try and extend the rollover feature on down a bit so that the entire background changes with the button and not just a small square part...Could be hard, might have to use that map thingy whatever it is I read about in DHTML, but I will see what I can do.

The news page is just tempoary. I am just messing around with it right now, to see what all I can do with it.

But yeah, I will take care of those problems as soon as I can (I have a meeting with my boss today, so it will be later on tonight central time), but I will post back here when I got some changes.

Also does anyone know how to fix that stupid break in the images that happens in IE. I hate that f'ing browser SOOO much. It sucks major that we have to design for it. Get rid of the damn thing since it dosn't f'ing work right!....sorry....anyways, any ideas on destroying the line break there? I didn't insert one, but it still acts like I did. :( works fine in FireFox and Opera....guess you know now what is the better browser. lol

#5 steviewdr

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 04:22 PM

Well that "Client Login Here" text is v. bad looking. Totally out of character. The length of the left div is much better.

On your order page - why are you using iframes with another scrollbar??
ON FIREFOX - Go to this page and RESIZE to 800x600 ...................................................
.............................
Now look at your scroll bars - ditch that iframe or whatever.

To solve your images from wrapping down onto a new line - put this line into your DIV:
overflow: hidden;

In relation to the 3d effect on your Nav bar, jcombs is excellent at doing this subtly. My example is: [a href=\"http://www.portal.kartbuilding.net/home.html\" target=\"_blank\"]http://www.portal.kartbuilding.net/home.html[/a] and a good one of jcombs is: [a href=\"http://www.multimedia-technologies.com/c3/\" target=\"_blank\"]http://www.multimedia-technologies.com/c3/[/a] Theres no hovers on these - but you may be able to do something. Anyways thats what I had in mind. More 3d glossy looks on another of jcombs: [a href=\"http://www.multimedia-technologies.com/index.php\" target=\"_blank\"]http://www.multimedia-technologies.com/index.php[/a]

Rgds,
Steve


#6 steelmanronald06

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 08:44 PM

The client login link is tempoary until I can make a button for the top. I hate graphics, but I will get it done. To the 3d thing, yeah right. LOL. I couldn't do that if my life depended on it. I will give it a shot, but I highly doubt I will succeed. LOL. I just plain _suck_ at graphics.

also the form part. I am working on that. See I don't like to handle _ANY_ of the credit card information. Another reason is I don't have the money to pay for the software. So I have joined with a place, kinda like paypal, that handles that for you. That is the form that they told me to include in my text. :( I will work on taking out the damnable iframe though.

#7 steelmanronald06

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 08:56 PM

took care of that iframe. it still exist, but I just sized the height up until there wasn't another scroll bar. sorry bout that. Yeah, I know I shouldn't use iframes, but I am not about to handle 20 plus credit card numbers myself. Best to let a governmental certified company do that [img src=\"style_emoticons/[#EMO_DIR#]/wink.gif\" style=\"vertical-align:middle\" emoid=\":wink:\" border=\"0\" alt=\"wink.gif\" /] . Safer for both the buyer and seller.

Anything else I am missing besides sizing up that logo? Also, can someone take a look at the login.php page? I just threw the form on there so my customers could log in still, but what should I do to make it better looking? I have NO ideas on what to do with it.



#8 steviewdr

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Posted 19 May 2006 - 09:42 PM

Well by using iframes - the client will not see the ssl cert or anthing to show them that the site is/isnt secure.

The login page is very very plain and bare.

Rgds,
Steve




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