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  1. #1
    SitePoint Member Vension.com's Avatar
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    Cool Free Biz Development, Information-type Site

    Hello,
    I just (4/23) finished up a website I have been working on for a while.
    The main objective of the website is to provide free business, ecommerce, marketing, etc. information, insight, tools, resources, etc.

    I'm hoping to build a community type of place such as sitepoint.com

    I've written all the content myself, so there isn't much on there now, but hopefully I will get some people to input their thoughts on the site.

    At any rate, any feedback would be great and helpful as far as the design, layout, content quality, etc.

    Thanks,
    Jeff
    Free Business Development, Insight, and Inspiration
    www.vension.com

  2. #2
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    is it http://vension.com you're requesting a critique for?

  3. #3
    SitePoint Member Vension.com's Avatar
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    Yes, Thanks - I forgot to put the link...

    http://www.vension.com
    Free Business Development, Insight, and Inspiration
    www.vension.com

  4. #4
    SitePoint Enthusiast dahmian's Avatar
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    Having the text blue is annoying --as links are usually blue-- and having the links black or is it dark blue is less annoying. I like the color scheme but the header images ("news" "navigation") are not very effective in focusing my attention because they are used so much.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Enthusiast kajax101's Avatar
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    Question What's it all about?

    Vension,

    I don't think there is any real problem with the blue text, as the links are pretty distinguishable.

    I do however find that it's not too clear what your site is about.

    As I understand, you guys are basically a business info site, is that correct? What kind of business? Online only?

    You have to get this message across right away so people visiting your site can tell if it will be of use to them.

    This article makes the same point:

    http://www.useit.com/alertbox/20010722.html

    Other than that I'd like to say that if you site is a content site, it will live or die by content, I would seriously focus on getting as much content as you can.

    You should check the content section of this web site:

    http://www.sitepoint.com/subcat/content-strategy

    This article in particular might be of interest:

    http://www.sitepoint.com/article/content-rich-website

    ...I hope that was useful.

    -All the best

    p.s. I have an article on my site you might like:

    http://www.hypertextdesign.co.uk/res...main-name.html

    tell me what you think of it.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard Pedro Monteiro's Avatar
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    Absolutely breathtaking!



    This is not something that happens very often, but this site pleases me in every single aspect, from its functionality, speed, to its brilliant Design concept!



    Fantastic inspiring work!

  7. #7
    Non-Member Egor's Avatar
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    Nice looking site, Took quite a long time to load on 56K and seems to have that template look about it.

    I thikn the text would look better black, because at the moment it doesnt really stand out.

    Other then that its a great looking site.

  8. #8
    SitePoint Member Vension.com's Avatar
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    Thanks for all of the comments, and suggestions. I will be working on them all this week.

    *Any further comments are welcomed from others
    Free Business Development, Insight, and Inspiration
    www.vension.com

  9. #9
    SitePoint Enthusiast snowman2004's Avatar
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    This site shows potential but has a long way to go!

    It looks good and its easy to navigate. But, as you know, it is short of content.

    I had to do some digging to get anything good. The main content of your site has to be easy to get to, so move the main category links - "General business", "E-commerce" and "Marketing" to the front page and introduce more content asap, which I can get to from the front page if poss.

    For what its worth, I have heard it said that Google only starts to take you seriously when you have 100 pages or more of content! A couple of other points......

    I noticed on the front page, at the bottom you have put "Wan't free exposure" instead of "Want free exposure".

    I went into "Blogs", then clicked on "Home" on the left hand navigation panel and got message "Page not found".

    So, a fair start, and I'd like to visit your site again once you've got a load of content on it....

    Ray

  10. #10
    SitePoint Zealot openXS's Avatar
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    Takes quite some time to load. But the design is simple and good. Though the Blue Text color does nto look so good, but overall, its a nice looking site with not much info on it and with not so good speed.

  11. #11
    SitePoint Zealot Cheeser's Avatar
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    You have a no-right click script on your page which I find is very unprofessional, especially with the popup alert box.

    i wasnt even looking at your source, I'm using firefox and I pressed the middle mouse button to scroll on the page... I suggest getting rid of that script as there are many ways around it and also it only really works to its best in sites with frames.

    Edit:


    hmm... i tried it again and the popup shows up only sometimes when i middle click...odd


    Other than that the site is great, thumbs up

  12. #12
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    The following review is given using Opera 7.50.

    First Impressions
    The immediate presentation, good though it was, was spoiled a little by having to wait for "Sending request to trafficzap.com..."

    I'm not sure who they are but it made me think that the site I was trying to view was going to be laden down with ads. Had I have not been intent on reviewing it, I would have turned back at that point.

    The next thing I spotted was the quite obvious grammar error at the top of the page: "Welcome to Vension.com where you are sure to find information to help your business evolve, we try our best to provide business owners quality information, tips, tricks, resources and insight!"

    Firstly, a period should be after evolve. Secondly, I'm not quite sure what is worth exclaiming at the end? It's a misconception that an exclamation mark (or in most cases, numerous exclamation marks,) will make the text any more effective. It's often better to make the text more noticeable if you feel that it needs such prominance, than it is to exlaim it for no real apparent reason.

    Layout
    I liked the fact that the links were consistently underlined, though I would like to see a bit more colour contrast between links and general text.

    I was able to reduce browser width to 584 pixels before the page needed a horizontal scrollbar -- a rarity in this day and age.

    Perhaps it was Opera but I didn't see any ALT tags or TITLE tags on image and text links respectively. I don't like having to guess where a link is going to take me, and visually impaired users will have even more trouble with that.

    I found the site to be a little "templateish" but that is not always such a bad thing. It was generally clean, though some of the images could be a little crisper, such as the "Website Ranking" and "Site of the Week".

    I also noted that the code was very laid out in source view. Perhaps not your intent, but it does help towards that 'professional' appearance, to me at least.

    Colour
    As already stated, the one area I would like to see some change is in the link colours. Other than that, I found the colours to be easy on the eye and well-contrasting.

    Presentation
    The "Insight" link caused me to sit and wonder, what the hell does that mean? I think it is one of those things that, to you, as the site owner, may know instantly; however, visitors will be more reluctant to click, simply because it doesn't make any sense. On the other hand, I suppose they may click it simply because they want to find out what it means?

    Basic psychology will tell you that people don't like (a.) feeling stupid or (b.) having to work too hard for simple things. I feel that link name does a bit of both. Perhaps a well written alt tag may help resolve this.

    On each page, there are three links to "Home". Again, adding to the confusion factor even further.

    The biggest problem by far, was the incessant "Sending request to trafficzap...." delays raised on each and every page. It took all of ten-seconds for that to become supremely annoying and discouraging me from even wanting to click any links.

    The content of the site was excellent, though the homepage gave me a feeling of it being a little parasitic in feeding me content from other sites. Placing the "This Week" on top of the "News" would resolve this, I feel.

    Your page titles need some attention. Each one appears to be exactly the same, and on each one, you have the business name before the content that people might actually search for.

    There is little or no point in having your business name at the start of the page titles. Those who know it will undoubtedly know the URL too. THose who don't, well, they're never likely to search for it then are they?

    Rating
    If I had to rate this site: 7.5/10

  13. #13
    SitePoint Member Vension.com's Avatar
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    Thanks again for all of the feedback, I've been working on it and come to an area where I need some advice....

    Both the news section and the website ranking tool come from different websites - I think they are both useful, however, from the reviews in here I can tell they are causing trouble. The news script is disabling the right-click and the website ranking tool on the right is causing some loading issues.

    Do you think that they are worth the trouble? Or should I replace them? Ive looked all over for a better news-feed but nothing is as good and short (listing only a few news headlines) as this one.

    Other than that, thank you all for the feedback, it is being a great help. I am working on the loading times, alt tags, titles, link colors, etc.

    Thanks,
    Jeff
    Free Business Development, Insight, and Inspiration
    www.vension.com

  14. #14
    SitePoint Addict
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vension.com
    Do you think that they are worth the trouble? Or should I replace them? Ive looked all over for a better news-feed but nothing is as good and short (listing only a few news headlines) as this one.
    Personally, I didn't even notice the disabled right-click, but then I never find a need to right-click in Opera.

    However, you are going to need some news or alternative content to fill that gap. I would be reluctant to remove that until you manage to find a suitable alternative.

    The website ranking, on the other hand, I would remove in an instant. For what it is, I don't see that it enhances the site greatly, if at all. It certainly isn't worth the loading problems that it clearly causes.

  15. #15
    SitePoint Zealot Cheeser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SniperX
    Personally, I didn't even notice the disabled right-click, but then I never find a need to right-click in Opera.
    it disables middle click for Firefox .8, so it's kinda annoying

  16. #16
    SitePoint Addict
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheeser
    it disables middle click for Firefox .8, so it's kinda annoying
    Yes, I can imagine it would be.


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