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Thread: please review

  1. #1
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    please review

    Hello All,

    I'd appreciate comments about the current state of http://www.devbistro.com

    1) the site uses css for layout and was tested with pretty much all major browsers on both pc and mac. if the layout appears funky for you, please post your browser/platform info so that i can fix the issue.

    2) i am curious to know if the navigation is intuitive enough. the site offers many services to employers, developers, and design firms and i'd like to know if i made it clear on or around main page.

    3) i am starting CPM advertising and had to modify layout slightly. here is an example of what it will look like: http://devbistro.com/resources-with-banner.jsp . i hope the banner area does not appear too obstructive. any comments here?


    Thanks a lot!
    James

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    SitePoint Zealot AlpineZone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by madeonmoon
    1) the site uses css for layout and was tested with pretty much all major browsers on both pc and mac. if the layout appears funky for you, please post your browser/platform info so that i can fix the issue.
    Nice clean design, but it's bordeline boring. Maybe a few icons or images to jaz it up a little bit? The site resolves fine for me both in IE 6 and Firefox 1.

    Quote Originally Posted by madeonmoon
    2) i am curious to know if the navigation is intuitive enough. the site offers many services to employers, developers, and design firms and i'd like to know if i made it clear on or around main page.
    The navigation is pretty clear, but there's a lot of white space between the navigation and your "Featured Jobs". That's prime real estate. Try to use that space more effectively.


    Quote Originally Posted by madeonmoon
    3) i am starting CPM advertising and had to modify layout slightly. here is an example of what it will look like: http://devbistro.com/resources-with-banner.jsp . i hope the banner area does not appear too obstructive. any comments here?
    The banner location is fine, but runs the risk of being ignored. You may also want to eliminate wrapping on that header cell. If you resize the window smaller or are on a smaller screen resolution, the banner jumps above the logo.

    Hope this helps!

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    I like the layout, I'm a fan of simple and clean, and the graphic logo at the top looks nice and professional. I agree you could continue on with that theme using text images or icons for your titles in the page and use some more colour. The banner ad that you made for the sample on the resources page is good, it's got colour and a slogan, can you use that in the page design?

    I searched for a developer job and thought it was excellent that I could quickly choose my location from the drop-down menu and instantly see the jobs listed. I like the navigation on the homepage (with the >>) better than the one that remains on the top/right because the one on the homepage gets me to where I want to go in one click.

    Marie
    Web Design Company, Misson BC Canada
    http://www.internetimage.ca

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    SitePoint Enthusiast jonathanbriggs's Avatar
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    I agree that it is a little bit dull at the moment. I want the design to work at deeper levels - so icons etc would be good. The layout looks good but it does not shout "register" or "explore" to employers or employees.

    The white space in the middle looks a bit odd and the latest jobs feels like another block of Google ads.

    Perhaps you could feature some of your "stories" on the front page.

    www.jonathanbriggs.com

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    SitePoint Wizard mark_W's Avatar
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    In my opinion its more clean than dull! I think it does the job while looking pretty good! I just think there are areas that have to much white space.

    Mark

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    SitePoint Enthusiast kadong's Avatar
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    layout is pretty. but i dunno its kinda boring tho the colors are ok and a few css. but still its boring its like veiwers wouldnt be so dull while navigating the site. may adding a fre colored images and icons would do.

    keep up the god work
    put your heart into you work
    it will give you the best results

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    Thanks, All!

    I totally agree with your comments and will experiment with adding a small set of images/icons to make the overall site less grey. i will also see what i can do to minimize the unused white space.

    Best,
    James

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    Clean design and easy to read.
    Bill Rosa


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    SitePoint Addict adam2003w's Avatar
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    1. Your site would do well to include a horizontal navigation bellow your gray bar header. Something recognizable for users to latch onto. Like sitepoint has or amazon.

    2. i like your name and the images you use to describe it in the header. coffee and a keyboard instantly illustratees late night programming.

    3. How about a slogan to describe your site just a bit more?

    4. I could use some sort of blog/news feature on the home page to list new content. right now I don't know where to look for new content.

    5. Some images might help spice up content. For example right beside each each title link and description, how about a thumbnail of the web site.

    good site, very simple, just need some tweaks. hope this helps.

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    SitePoint Addict thachp's Avatar
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    I checked your website with internet explorer and firefox...

    Layout and everything look great and simple.. But a little bit... plain... you should add more pix or icons. Great used of colors... very "attractive." Maybe shouldn't underlike hyperlink... try bolding it or something... Logo is great... It goes along with your layout... plain and simple.


    Cheers,

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    hey all,

    besides the spam post of s_kbroomstick, your posts are very helpful! in terms of icons or extra images to spice up the site, i am trying to come up with ideas for those images (for employers, developers, web design firms pages, etc). unfortunately, nothing great has crossed my mind so far. anyone has any ideas?

    once again, your advice is much appreciated
    james

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    SitePoint Zealot shim's Avatar
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    It's clean, calm, and neutral like the w3schools.com site. I like your design better, though.
    Sonic Rise - At the intersection of cars, nappy hair, and life!


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    First Impressions
    Immediately upon viewing, I could tell is was a pure CSS design. I'd like to say that was because of the fast load time but alas, it wasn't.

    It was because it looks exactly like a million other CSS box designs out there, even including the dashed/dotted borders, and the W3C and XHTML badges at the foot.

    That said, the initial layout is clean and spacious. The most obvious omission was something, anything in the header to tell me what the site is about. Of course, you know what DevBistro means to you, but to me as a web user, I have no idea. Perhaps a little something in there to give an immediate recognition factor that I am indeed on the type of site I want to be at?

    Colour Use
    Again, like many of the other CSS designs, it's not going to win any colourful design awards, but then I'm not sure that it needs to. However, you are competing in quite a heavily loaded market and so my feeling is that you need something to mark you differently from the others. Emulating a most common CSS design is not the best way to accomplish this, I feel.

    Navigation
    My issue with the navigation on this site is two-fold:

    1. The lack of colour for link styles within the body text.
    2. There doesn't seem to be a clearly defined area for navigation as such, and what there is is tucked away at the top right, barely showing itself. On my 21" monitor, I felt it was quite a reach to get from the body text to the navigation.

    A top-nav structure may have helped in this area.

    Page Copy
    The first thing I noticed in this area was that this is another site which takes almost the entire home-page telling me about you.

    This is, without a doubt, the most common copy error that I see on home pages. I want you to talk to me about what you can provide me, why I should choose you, what will I benefit from? Will I save time? Will I get results? Where do I pay, if I pay, etc?

    As a test, count how many times you mention yourself, and then compare it to how many times the word "you" is mentioned.

    The more saddening part here is that you have most of the information required, but it's (a) tucked down the bottom and (b) written in a flat and uninspiring manner. Bullets may at least help to highlight certain benefits.

    Summary

    Weaknesses:
    Too blog-like in appearance.
    No originality, which I would imagine is a prerequisite in this competitive area.
    Not an ideal layout for large monitor users.
    Needs "sparkle" via sharper copy and a little splash of colour.
    Needs a bit of "identity"

    Strengths:
    Nice clean font use.
    Paragraphs well spaced, making for an easy read.
    Fast loading.

    Rating:
    4/10 - Looks far too like a blog.

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    SitePoint Enthusiast EssenceHost's Avatar
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    I think you should inject a little more color. Its clean, but a little dull. I think you implemented the ads well. Doesn't stand out too much from the rest of the design. Create more structure for the text on the left. It all looks like its floating.

    Overall design and feel is professional though. well done!

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    When I look at the layout my first words are 'bland'. I'm going to be picky, but I'm only trying to help you improve your design.

    The 'Featured Jobs' box should be moved down a little more to be centered in it's little pocket. This is picky, but it really pops out at me and may to others.

    I would also make your top banner/logo a little larger. It's barely noticable and doesn't really distinguise who you are.

    The word 'Welcome' is also very far away from the following paragraph. This seems to be consistent on the page. I would change this and the margins on the list that you have as they are spaced too far out.

    Again the layout is a little dull, but the design is fine. What you need are different colors and to loose the grey or incorporate more of the orange. I think that simply putting more orange into your layout would balance the negative grey and make the layout look a lot better.

    Otherwise your site looks nice and I like it, very professional.

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    It's neat and simple, but it looks like a blog.

    I think working on the content area by adding more information and pictures would help shape it to your company. (ie; Future jobs table looks good)

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    SitePoint Member scoot's Avatar
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    i like the skin ..very netly and usefull resource

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    thanks guys. once again, very helpful. i am busy incorporating your comments within the site

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    Chief Procrastinator arano's Avatar
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    I think the site needs an injection of colour, I also think that It is a little too wide, you dont have enought content to span a whole page and could easily be condensed into a fixed width page, which in my opinoin would make it look a lot better(im sure you will get a different view). I def think it would look better if it was a smaller width page.

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    arano,

    thanks for the review and your suggestion. originally it was narrower (not i dissaprove fixed width in most cases so it was just set to occupy a smaller percentage of the screen). now i made it wider to accomodate for content on this page mainly: http://devbistro.com/developers/all/

    james

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    Chief Procrastinator arano's Avatar
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    Ah Now I see why, Its just harder to get a balance when you have content of different amounts on dif pages.

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    It is like mention neat and simple. I too felt there is perhaps just a bit to much white.

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    SitePoint Guru DCS's Avatar
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    overall looks good, just a little plain. spice it up a bit!


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