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  1. #1
    SitePoint Zealot mike.fro's Avatar
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    BlindNerd | A Nerd's Community

    Hey everyone,
    I'm looking for a good critique on my website, BlindNerd which can be found at www.blindnerd.net The communities activity has fallen a lot lately and wondering if you all could critique the website, give suggestions, promotion advise, content advise, etc...

    Basically i'm looking for a good critique on the website. Thanks a lot for your time and take care.
    Michael John Froseth

  2. #2
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    I suspect your main problem maybe that you're targeting quite a broad range of potential users. I'd be inclined to narrow your focus on a certain market rather than try to cover nerds in general.

  3. #3
    SitePoint Enthusiast Crossfire's Avatar
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    "distortrage'' has a point here. It coud be the "broad range'' factor. However I really liked the design and choice of colors and all the categories on your forum. My advice is just keep on advertising your website as much as possible.

  4. #4
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    Yea IMO I am thinking that you could eliminate a few of the Forums, There seems to be to many and I really dont knowwhere to go. when I visit the website. There is no real Focal Point on the Site. Nothing that really just grabs my attention.

    You might consider using the top area of your home pge to show the 10 latest posts? This will allow people to see the most current dscutions and jump in if they see something interesting, Regardles of the forum category.

    I was looking and it also seems that your meta tags could use some work for search engine optimization.

  5. #5
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    I really like your site. I think it could help a lot if you had featured members next to each category so that it gives creditbility and incentive for others to join. Such as highly qualified users in each specific area, that participate on your site.

  6. #6
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    My thoughts....


    I really like the site...good design theme etc. If I were you I would make it a tad bit wider. Lots of dead space on each side... might look better- just something to experiment with.

    other thoughts

    1) The text in the message board yellow/red/brown seems hard on my eyes

    2) Focus on a niche or a couple of somewhat related niches (that no other board has)

    3) You need to give people a reason to signup, gift giveaway, maybe a no censoring offer, explain what your site does better ie better moderators, spam free, etc etc

    4) Project who should sign up in the top section (niche, target audience/user)

    5) Slim down your categories - its actually best to start with 5 best categories rather than 20 with little or no posters (makes it seems bare) Once you get more users- increase the topics available

    6) Not sure if you have karma/rating installed but I would recommend that if you dont, give users reputation/respect in your mb community....


    nice site! dont give up keep advertising




    Oh and id also create a "hot or most recent topics" section to display on top - give like 2 most recent comments or something

  7. #7
    SitePoint Guru rockit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by calven View Post
    My thoughts....


    I really like the site...good design theme etc. If I were you I would make it a tad bit wider. Lots of dead space on each side... might look better- just something to experiment with.

    other thoughts

    1) The text in the message board yellow/red/brown seems hard on my eyes

    2) Focus on a niche or a couple of somewhat related niches (that no other board has)

    3) You need to give people a reason to signup, gift giveaway, maybe a no censoring offer, explain what your site does better ie better moderators, spam free, etc etc

    4) Project who should sign up in the top section (niche, target audience/user)

    5) Slim down your categories - its actually best to start with 5 best categories rather than 20 with little or no posters (makes it seems bare) Once you get more users- increase the topics available

    6) Not sure if you have karma/rating installed but I would recommend that if you dont, give users reputation/respect in your mb community....


    nice site! dont give up keep advertising




    Oh and id also create a "hot or most recent topics" section to display on top - give like 2 most recent comments or something
    I certainly agree with finding a niche to focus more on. For example, does the Web really need another forum related to web development? I think sitepoint certainly dominates this area, with some others so right there you have some stiff competition. I enjoy the design of your website, but would rather spend my time on sitepoint than your site, no offense.

    Another thing to consider would be starting a blog on the site as well. Give some people something to think about, or maybe start up conversations on. That could help in some organic search engine traffic as well.

    The current home page, looks great (graphics wise), but the layout has no strategy really here. Like there isn't any sort of call to action, besides signing up for a message board that has limited activity. I think to be truly successful here, you need to put some other initiatives into place.

    If you build it, they will come, might work for certain Hollywood movies but on the web to be successful you need a certain business strategy if you want to be successful.

    Keep working at it, and you'll do great!!!

  8. #8
    SitePoint Wizard wonshikee's Avatar
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    I love the design - very simple and pleasing to the eye.

    I particularly like the bubble navigation - creative.

  9. #9
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    I Like the design

    I Like the design - very simple and soothing to the eye. But there are lots of dead space on each side.
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  10. #10
    SitePoint Enthusiast arthurakay's Avatar
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    Very nice design!

    However, in IE7 I get a JavaScript errror on just about every page... which is annoying. Try fixing that.

    I also think a blog would be a fantastic idea (as calven pointed out), in addition to an RSS feed (I didn't see one... unless I missed it). Nerds like me are into that stuff!

  11. #11
    SitePoint Enthusiast
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    I agree with arthurakay - error on many pages with IE7 (which i viewed it on)

    It is actually very nice. Easy to read the content which is important on forums. The problem you have is, there are many general forums online which is why it is making it hard for you to find recent activity.
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  12. #12
    SitePoint Zealot Jay-S's Avatar
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    try to put your inline css to one css file... all attributes design with css...

  13. #13
    SitePoint Enthusiast
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    While the site is appealing to the eye having so many forum categories is only asking users to 'chat' about the topic.

    If you were to select a specific niche you will select a group of users that will keep coming back. Why? Look at SitePoint people post for an answer. People reply because their interest is filtered. Why post in a Web Development forum for a PHP question when you can post in a PHP forum?

    Adam

  14. #14
    SitePoint Enthusiast irodgers's Avatar
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    I like the design. But how much does design matter for a forum site? What will suck people in is interesting or informative posts. Controversial posts are good too (but maybe not so likely with tech subjects). Don't know how you get good posters or if design attracts them.

  15. #15
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    first thing i noticed, the orange and blue colours are annoying

    second thing i noticed was that i had to scroll down to find out what the site was about (had to scroll past the generic forums)

    my first click into a forum showed me this (IE6, winXP)

    broken layout == hit the back button and go elsewhere
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  16. #16
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    Has a very friendly look, but the layout seems to have some technical issues. I also can't quite determine what the forum is all about...
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  17. #17
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    agree with most above. It was hard for me to realize the niche of your community until I realized that it doesn't really server a niche.

  18. #18
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    what a great name and design! I love how the domain name really fits the whole blind nerd theme.

    However, I would fix the title so it reports what the site is about and not a generic vbulletin reference. For me, that really detracts from all the work that went into the theme for the site.

    As for graphics and colors - i think its a great use of web 2.0 themes.
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  19. #19
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    I can't really add much since what I wanted to say has already been said. Although I really must point out that it looks like a forum for the pokemon crowd. That color scheme is very very polarizing. Either people will love it, or hate it. Unfortunately, anyone above the age of 14 will probably hate it.

    Oh, and where's the main menu?

  20. #20
    SitePoint Zealot yukimushu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by calven View Post
    My thoughts....


    I really like the site...good design theme etc. If I were you I would make it a tad bit wider. Lots of dead space on each side... might look better- just something to experiment with.
    I'd definitely have to agree with that one! as a forum, I can't help but feel trapped by it's lack of width. I wouldn't say make it alot bigger, but another 100 or so pixels might help make it feel more open and less cramped.

    Other than that, I love the design

  21. #21
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    It looks nice, though i've never liked the idea of a forum standing on it's own.

    And how you can have 3,292 members and only 3,819 post is really odd


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