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Author Topic: Should I re-design my site?  (Read 8196 times)

Offline mxgirl

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Should I re-design my site?
« on: November 29, 2012, 02:59:25 PM »
Hey all - my hosting plan expires in a few months and was thinking of either re-designing my site.  Any opinions?  Thanks.

« Last Edit: December 05, 2014, 03:10:43 AM by mxgirl »

Offline MrPhil

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2012, 05:01:37 PM »
"...either re-designing my site." ...or.... what? Do nothing, or give up on your site? Are you getting the traffic you want, or do you need to increase it? Is your site doing what you created it to do for you? Even if you get plenty of visitors and/or your search engine placement is satisfactory, it doesn't hurt to freshen up your site once a year (or even more often).

The only way I can see your hosting plan tying into this is if you're thinking of quitting when your plan runs out. If you plan to keep going, whether you need to soon renew your hosting plan (hopefully you're still with LP) is irrelevant to doing a redesign.
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Offline mxgirl

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2012, 06:49:32 AM »
Of course I'm still with LP ! :smiling:

Yes, I was thinking of doing away with the website and going either with Wordpress or (ugh) FB.  The site's purpose is to drive traffic to Amazon for my book, but I'm not sure how many of the visitors are actually doing that.  The book is finally making a bit of money but not enough to cover the cost of the hosting plan. 

Anyway - if I do decide to give it another year I was just wondering what you guys and gals thought of the site.

Thanks for your thoughts (as always)  :thumb:

websky19

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2012, 02:10:20 AM »
Yes, Just you need to change the Banner Pictures and some colors of your site. Or apply XML themes.

Offline mxgirl

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2012, 05:32:50 AM »
Hey websky -

Thanks for the suggestions.  Believe it or not there's a theme to those colors.  Dirt bike manufacturers each have a certain color - blue for Yamaha, yellow for Suzuki, etc.  I found the color codes for each manufacturer and that's where the site colors come from.  I'm not saying it necessarily works from an artistic standpoint, but I really couldn't figure out a good palette to work with so i went with the one you see. 

Not sure what an XML theme is tho - will have to check that out.  thanks again for taking the time to chime in.

Offline MrPhil

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2012, 06:11:23 AM »
Looking at your site, what strikes me are the huge gutters (wide margins) on either side, and all the content jammed into a very narrow space. You might look into a more "fluid" layout that would let you expand to mostly fill a wider screen, and give a less cluttered look. Say, 95% width with min-width and max-width to limit content to reasonable sizes on tiny or huge screens. If you like wide margins, try to find a background image of tire tracks on dirt that can be cleanly tiled -- it would fit the subject. There are pictures with text, as well as icons (FB, etc.) which are quite tiny, and would be more readable if you could give them some more real estate.

By the way, you can't legally copyright something "2013" until the year is 2013 and the content has changed in that year. The "latest" copyright year should be a global variable in your script, or in some cases, the current year from a date function is permissible.
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Offline mxgirl

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2012, 04:44:55 PM »
Yeah - I was just trying to stay ahead of the game with the 2013 copyright thing. 

Part of the problem with designing a website is the differences in screen sizes - it looks great on my monitor, but I have a small monitor size.  That's one of the reasons I was asking for feedback (shoulda done it sooner I guess).  The site is made with Dreamweaver and I thought I had it set to 90 or 95% width.  Will have to go back and check.

Thanks for the heads up!

Offline mxgirl

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2012, 04:12:47 AM »
I forgot to ask which browser you're using.  :-?

Offline MrPhil

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2012, 05:37:57 AM »
Firefox 16, often full page on my laptop (about 1300px wide x 768 high).
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Offline mxgirl

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2012, 12:21:22 PM »
I dunno Mr. Phil -

One of the nice perks with DW is the ability to check your site in different browsers.  I checked it in Safari 5.1. IE9, Firefox 11.0 and it came out fine (Google Chrome would not download so I could not check that browser).   I can't afford to have a crappy website so I also posted in the DW forum to ask for feedback and the site seems to be fine.  Here's the response:

It looks just fine - I checked on FF 16.0.2, Chrome 23.0, Safari 6.0.2

 
Btw, are you aware you can make your page a .php file and add this:



 
The DW post included the script to update the copyright info automatically, but I can't  post it here because it's causing problems with the thread.  (I prefer to do it manually anyway - even if I am a bit early).

Not sure why it's causing problems on your computer, but sure would like to solve the problem!   :-?




Offline MrPhil

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2012, 07:27:40 PM »
Your site is fixed width 960px. I would try to do something to allow the content to expand a bit, perhaps to 90 or 95% with min-width maybe 600px and max-width 1100px. The background can only be described as battleship gray -- a nice tiled image would be good. Whether DW will let you easily do these kinds of things, I don't know.

It "looks fine" in the sense that it's displaying correctly, not that it's a good design or a good use of screen space. I don't know that there is a "problem" on my computer. Certainly, as a fixed width page it's displaying correctly, but it's not an attractive page.

It's not good to "be early" on the copyright year -- it could even be legal trouble if someone wants to challenge your copyright as invalid. Why not wait until you need to update the site in 2013 before making that the copyright year?
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Offline mxgirl

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2012, 04:30:45 AM »
Ok - I misunderstood the post about huge gutters and content jammed in the middle.  I thought you meant there was something wrong with the two sidebars that was cramming the middle content.  I think what threw me was when you said the icons were quite tiny.

I know it won't win any design awards, but as long as it displays correctly, I'm happy for the time being.  I'm still not sure I'll re-up the hosting plan so I'm definitely leaving it as is until then(Feb).  DW used to be really really easy to work with up to about CS3, but I'm struggling mightily with CS5. 

Thank you ever so much for all the feedback!!!  :thumb:  :thumb:  :yep:

Offline nancy29

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2012, 01:44:38 AM »
Logo needs a bit of work rest all seems fine to me.

Offline Malin Cenusa

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Re: Should I re-design my site?
« Reply #13 on: December 24, 2012, 11:57:06 PM »
The only thing I found hurting my eyes was the facebook box as the font colors look really bad on the chosen background. If I'm not mistaking you can either set a different background or change the font color from facebook.
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