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  1. #1
    I see geek people adris72's Avatar
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    Financial Services website

    I'm looking for comments about design/layout, usability and accesibility.

    www.sjedwards.com

    I don't like the colors a lot, but I was forced to work with the client's preferences. (As you will notice, website still under construction, but I want early feedback to fix any possible issue).

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    The site looks ok, however I can tell that it is a work in progess. Here a few things I noticed off the bat:

    - After the end of the main text body, until it says Securities Offered ThroughN North Ridge Securities Corp there is a large space. You might want to cut this down a bit. This may be as a result of my browser hoever (I am using firefox)
    .
    - Have you thought about having the nav menu inside the main text body (the white area)? I think you should try extending the white area and putting the nav menu inside. I think that the white box in the middle with the nav on the side doesnt flow well.

    - In relation to the top comment, you may also want to do this:

    <------ Keep a purple strip on top --------->
    White middle all accross
    purple strip on the bottom.

    I think doing it like that may improve the "flow" of your website and make it look more appealing. To me the white box in the middle really throws the site off.

    Hope this helps

  3. #3
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    Nice site. Viewed in Safari

    1) I don't like the color (if you show them that enough people don't like it you might get them to change it).
    2) The white block is not vertically centered in the dark purple area (at least in Safari)
    3) The text in the white block is small
    4) When the window is extended to around 1000 pixels there is a lot of empty space on the right.
    5) On the "Who are we" page put a little more space between the graphics and the first line, and less space between topics
    6) On the "Client services" page, the links are blue, change that to match the style of the page, again a lot of space between titles and information

    7) If you want to show richness use blacks, greys, whites, and silvers (think BMW)

  4. #4
    I see geek people adris72's Avatar
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    Thank you guys for the great feedback so far.

    nsg1000 - I fixed the footer, about the menu, that's a major change (I have to make all the menu images again) if everybody feels like you, then I'll change it.

    justin - I tried to change her mind, but she says that purple and gold have some personal meaning for her.
    I made the text a little bit bigger, is in percents, so user can change it.
    I fixed the empty space on the right and the spaces between texts.

    Thank you again.
    Last edited by adris72; Jul 13, 2006 at 06:24.

  5. #5
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    I should have known. Women like colors like that. It isn't a bad thing, especially if she works a lot with other women. If she is willing to pay for it, just do the best you can.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Enthusiast Breezwell's Avatar
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    Okay, just an idea if she is adamant about the color purple. What if you simply reversed the color scheme?

    Make what is purple white ( or a soft shade of lite gray, etc. ) and what is white a softer shade of purple? This would take away much of the 'in your face' color assault. Also, if you make the actual text area narrower, it will tone down the purple as well while pulling you into the text even more. Right now you stare at the text just to avoid seeing all that purple!

    Just an idea. Good luck.

  7. #7
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    You've said you don't have complete control since this is for a client, but I'll point everything out anyway.

    The purple is very overwhelming. I think just a lighter shade that didn't contrast the white so much would help.

    Another issue is the images. It's always good to try and keep the file size down, but the quality seems to be suffering. The logo and pictures are quite blurry and have some noise.

    There seems to be quite a bit of wasted space too. There's a lot of empty purple in the header and sidebars along with some pages having a lot of empty white space. Maybe if you reorganized the content some it would help?

  8. #8
    Non-Member Bookworm SEO's Avatar
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    This website makes the mistake of many small business sites: it tries to give an impression of grandeur. "who WE are" "sd edwards, CEO" (and sole employee?..)

    I think if it's trying to give off the one-to-one counselling thing, it could be fine just to say that it's her consulting firm. People like personal services, and knowing someone. Being small isn't a negative thing. Being personal is really good, too. Marketing Sherpa just published a case study by some outdoor equipment website that made their website more personal with pictures, and interesting questions in ordinary human language. The result was a 30% improvement in conversions for users who saw the about page.

    Other than that, the site has 0 seo strategy. The title tag means nothing, there are no meta tags, keyword density didn't show anything in particular, there are no external links, internal link vocabulary isn't especially 'finance' heavy, and there really isn't anything to make someone link to the site. Maybe the calculators, but it seems those could be found elsewhere. Perhaps a blog with some tips on financial management might help...
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  9. #9
    I see geek people adris72's Avatar
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    rej1587 -what screen resolution do you have? You are the first one to complain about the image quality. About the pages with lots of empty white space, the site still under construction, that space will be filled with text and some space at the left will be filled with a newsletter signup box and probably some other boxes.

    Bookworm SEO
    - Thank you for the advice, I usually do the layout first and then concentrate in title and meta tags, and I didn't get to that part yet. The blog is a good idea, I'll suggest it to her. Thanks.

    About the "who we are" she does work with other people (lawyers, financial counselors, and so on, hence the tagline "network") but again, the site is under construction and she's sending me the texts little by little, she started with her own bio, but that page is missing info about the other people. Thank you anyway, your feedback is very useful.

  10. #10
    Non-Member Bookworm SEO's Avatar
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    Are they part of her company, or partners?

    The blog would be great to have people come back. It also shows she knows what she's doing, and builds trust with clients, which improves conversions.

    Oh, I forgot to mention - the colours look fine to me. I think the gold fits fine with the purple. It fits the theme, and isn't excessive, which would be tacky.

    Keep me up to date

  11. #11
    I see geek people adris72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bookworm SEO
    Are they part of her company, or partners?
    Here is what she email me yesterday:

    "I am attaching a copy of my bio for you to review and decide where it should go. I have decided not to have individual bios for people on the "who we are" page. Since it is a network of services that could change occasionally I will just submit a description of the organizations that I work with ie. In an effort to provide quality service to our clients SJ Edwards has aligned with a team of Certified Financial Planners, Estate Planning Attorneys, Tax Planners, etc (similar to what I said in my welcome about a strategic alliance). What do you think?"


    BTW I didn't reply this yet... I have no idea about texts... I'm a designer not a copywriter...


  12. #12
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    set up a little database for he to enter information into, that way she does the copy, and she can add, delete, and change company info whenever she wants

  13. #13
    I see geek people adris72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justin.giboney
    set up a little database for he to enter information into, that way she does the copy, and she can add, delete, and change company info whenever she wants
    Actually I did, I'm using Micro CMS but I'll deliver the site with the initial texts, then it will be on her own.

  14. #14
    SitePoint Wizard triexa's Avatar
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    It looks clean and simple, but I almost feel a little "too simple"

    My attention is drawm to this big white block in the middle... try to layer colors or round things, or soemthing like that

    My personal preference is for links to change color, and yours don't. Forever I preferred your way, until I tried teaching my mom how to use a computer. You could have a big "CLICK HERE" next to the link, but if nothing changed (except her cursor which she NEVER notices), you're out of luck!
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  15. #15
    SitePoint Member be21's Avatar
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    I dont think the design and color choice is right, for the focus of the site.

  16. #16
    Non-Member Bookworm SEO's Avatar
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    Hey,
    Sorry for the delay in getting back to you on this adris. A recent Marketing Sherpa case study found that a snowboard and outdoor gear company increased sales after redoing the about page. They made it really personal so people could relate, and build trust. Of the people who saw the about, sales increased 30%...
    Point being, making individual bios is a good idea. And not just corporate boring stuff, try and include some personal anecdotes, that makes them human financial planners, not just financial planners.

    my $.02

  17. #17
    SitePoint Enthusiast kozuch82's Avatar
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    Nice site.


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