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  1. #1
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    Travel/Food Site

    Hi Everyone,

    I recently started up a site about some of my favorite known and unknown places in NYC. The hope would be to expand once I get this city off the ground. What I really am looking for is an overview of the site and ways that I can get people to engage more with the different posts as right now it seems people are going to the site but not engaging much.

    Site: Exploringny.com

    Any and all advise is welcome!

    Erik

  2. #2
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    If I were you, I would get rid of the black empty space at the top by moving the banner up a bit. Also, you could extend the header banner to the full width of the page. If you want engagement from your visitors, you need to emphasize comments by saying "have you been in this place, what do you think". Hopefully, a few people will comment. Also, you can let the owners of the place now of the page they have on your site so that they can engage as well.

  3. #3
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    Hello Erik,
    I took a look through your site and here are my suggestions/notes for you:

    1. I would update the header to have either a full width version of the current banner that you have, or I would add an additional widget to the right of the banner. The black space draws the eye away from the content.

    2. On the Home page, I would adjust the height of the post displays boxes to be static so all of the rows are even to unify the look and feel of the page. This may require you to modify the style.css file.

    3. I like the use of the custom menu for the main navigation and how you incorporated the category navigation menu items.

    4. I would use a couple more widgets in the Footer section of the site to make things look more rounded out. Right now it feels like the site is not completed. You may just need to go through and fill out all of the options in the ePanel for the Elegant Themes theme that you are using to make the site look finished.

    I like the site idea overall and the content. Last suggestion would be to add a photo or video of yourself to personalize the site since you are reviewing items from your experiences. Hopefully my feedback helps.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for this great feedback! What are your thoughts on integrating more in-depth search functionality? I have been working on a faceted search widget to integrate into the site but haven't found anything worthwhile yet. Is this something you all would think would be an asset?

  5. #5
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    Hi
    My first impression is in agreement with a previous thread. That the black space on the right needs filling. I think it would look great if you continued with the New York skyline, which is so impressive to us Brits! Another point would be that you could consider the name of the site. Exploringny, means nothing to us Brits or I guess anyone outside the USA. It's also difficult to read. Why not cal it ExploringNewYork? That way visitors know exactly what they're getting. The review that I read of the German Restaurant was great. A little history, a short description and a personal review. What you might add is some pricing detail and a rating at the bottom of the review, instead of the price drop down menu, which is a little confusing. Having said that, I really like your conversational style and with a bit of tidying up in the sites presentation, I think I'd rather be looking at your site, than buying a tour guide! Great idea though and really useful for those visiting New York. Hope that helps.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Enthusiast Soapmarine's Avatar
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    Hello Erik,

    I like the whole idea of the site! Some personal thoughts of person who has never been in NY but planning to visit it in November 2014...and who is looking for the site like yours actually?
    1. the background is cold, I think it's better to have a softer background, I tissue or wall or something more human and less industrial
    2. the footer looks lonely. why not add something on the right too?
    3. I'm not convinced with typography. It's not easy to read as the letters stick to each other in long words
    4. in About Me section maybe you should justify the paragraph as it looks shabby

    Best regards,
    Alfiya

  7. #7
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    I agree with some of the other reviewers that there's too much wasted space at the top. I would make the header smaller. There also seems to be a lot of empty space to the right and especially upper-right of the site. Maybe find a wider header image?

    I don't like the raquo's (double right arrows) in the menu items because it makes them look kind of like breadcrumbs. I would instead use the tradational down arrow to indicate that it's a dropdown menu.

    Some of the content containers are taller than others, which doesn't provide a very consistent look. Maybe it's just a personal preference, but I would make them all the same height.

    I would try adding one more widget to the sidebar on the right, something that has to do with NYC.

    Overall I think it looks pretty good, nice work!

  8. #8
    SitePoint Member empowermentt's Avatar
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    I am visiting your website. It looks great. Keep it up and best wishes for your project.

  9. #9
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    I really like the idea for this website, and I was thinking of doing something similar for my city here in Europe. New York is perfect for this idea as it is so vast, there are always new and exciting things to discover.

    I would maybe include a map of the places, like a google map, so they could all be seen and explored that way on one map.

    I would also make the top banner smaller, as it just takes up valuable real-estate.

    To promote the website you could include vouchers or deals for your favourite places.

    I also think your articles should be longer, this would make them more like feature articles rather than just blog posts. This would capture the readers imagination more, and keep them longer on the site.

  10. #10
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    Overall solid website visually. Although I think you should have the boxes with the places be the same size. Right now you have the ones on the corners a little shorter, and i think it would look better if they were all the same size rectangles.

  11. #11
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    I think this is quite good, but there are a few things that can be improved.

  12. #12
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    Overall nice design,I like the layout.But I would put some text or links in the footer, it seems empty.

    And in restaurant review it would be better if you could add opening and closing hours.

    Good Luck

  13. #13
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    Doesn't look too bad.

    The thing that jumped out to me right away is that it needs more structure. There's nothing separating the header, from the navigation, from the content, from the sidebar, only a little blank space.

    I'd also suggest maybe spicing up the background a little bit?

    I also think it would be cool if the New York skyline up top, stretched across the entire width of the page. Sidebar looks a little narrow to be.

    I'd also suggest working on the typography a bit. I'd up the paragraph text, increase the line-height, and add some more spacing between the headings.

    I like the responsive effects, the hovers are cool too. Can't wait to see this one evolve, keep it up!

  14. #14
    SitePoint Member Rebecca99's Avatar
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    wow your website is so nice, maybe its called perfect website. best of luck

  15. #15
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    its wordpress theme....i can find it intresting....nd design is also clean..

  16. #16
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    Nice good website, but it was built using wordpress. For better user experience you can include some plug-ins.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by renu4102 View Post
    For better user experience you can include some plug-ins.
    Which type of plug-ins? How would they improve user experience?

    The point of the website review forum is to provide constructive feedback. If you don't take the time to explain what you mean, then your reply is of little or no help to the OP.

  18. #18
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    Change ALL CAPS on the titles, and navigation links.
    Add a description under the banner, so all of the search engines and users may get a clear idea about your site.

  19. #19
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    First of all, the idea of you website is very good, but there is need for a lot of improvements.
    The load time of the website is so high, so you could improve the load speed. There are
    a lot of capital letters as well, making the reading much harder. Also there are too much images
    and information in the first page, maybe you can create more pages or categories. Furthermore you
    have to improve the footer adding useful information and links.

  20. #20
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    Great website and great idea! This should be very popular if it's networked properly!
    Only issue is the top and bottom areas have too much space empty spaces.
    Finally, you might look into reducing the number of requests, you have around 103 requests which considerably slows down the page speed.
    Oh! and the entry-bottom-bg.png is flagged as a 404.

  21. #21
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    To me the layout looks clear, navigable and clear evident about what the website is. I would just instead of the grey/dark background add a urban HD picture of New-york as it would lighten up and modernize your website.

  22. #22
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    I really like your drop down menus at the top of the page. The gray space at the top right of your site is kind of blank.. maybe you could put something there. I really like how when you mouse over images, they light up and all of the text below them is shown. The category selection search on the right might be a little hard to understand for some users. Looks really nice!

  23. #23
    SitePoint Member cyrilkeiser's Avatar
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    Hey, Erik you have built a good site. However, something is needed to modify. You can modify the font styles and color combinations of news blocks. An animation on the home page required to attract more and more interest of user.

  24. #24
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    Hi there,

    your site seems like it has good content and articles posted, but I think that so much can be done to make those articles more appealing to a user of the site. For one, the 5 article per row layout makes the titles very bunched and cramped, and the titles tent to take up 3 lines. Perhaps finding a wordpress theme that accomodates a 3 article per row layout would make the titles more like one or two lines, leaving more room for a photo and the content of the article. Another thing is that the >> effect you did on your navigation to indicate that there is a dropdown can be (and was) easily misinterpreted for a pagination indicator. Perhaps using a fontawesome icon would help give better indication that it is a dropdown, and that could eliminate the confusion.

    I like the idea though, best of luck!

    Regards,

    JerseyNation

  25. #25
    SitePoint Wizard edshuck's Avatar
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    1. Center the site.
    2. I like the logo - a whole lot.

    Do you do a php pull to populate the boxes?


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