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  1. #1
    Junior Member nsmith35244's Avatar
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    my current site is at www.alligatorice.com and the temporary link is http://nathan.alligatorice.com/sitetest .

    I know the current version (alligatorice.com) is very much a bandwith hog, and I know that it needs to be something different.

    I was thinking of creating more an information-based site, with an information input section and then when the information is submitted, a visitor can download a "kit" with visual materials like the ones on the site now.

    The site is going to function as a sales medium. I'm wanting to know how I should re-design the site to perform its function, but still look professional and fit the overall "feel" that our company has with our printed materials.

    I know as of now, the layering, the top/side artwork, and the dynamic html menu all are messed up on various browsers. It works fine for me, but that doesn't mean it works for many others.

    Thanks in advance for your input.

    (Moderators, you can delete my post in the "How's My Site" section. This is the correct section to be posting this in.)

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  3. #2
    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    Get rid of all Dynamic HTML, Javascripts, and Flash.
    Nobody cares how wonderful your menus work, or how
    'really neat' they look when the mouse hovers over them.

    Your customers are coming to your site for information.
    Give it to them with easy navigation and no fancy menus.
    Make it work on all browsers. If you're a company selling
    a product, make it easy for customers to find your items.

    You'll then need to program some server-side scripts in
    either PHP or Perl to handle the forms and the download of
    files, or whatever you are offering.

    Do your site in either CSS or regular HTML ... whatever
    loads fast, is easy to read, easy to navigate.

    If a person visiting your site for the first time can't
    figure out what you're selling in about 5 seconds, they'll
    click out just as fast as they came.


  4. #3
    Junior Member shiningpixel's Avatar
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    That's a lot of text on each page to read - my eyes are glazing over.

    Try...
    - breaking up the information into smaller paragraphs
    - headlines with bigger type (don't need to number them)
    - bulleted lists
    - using a html/screen font for clarity (san serifs are easier to read)

    People don't like to scroll too much - smaller images will help.

    Also I like navigation buttons to give me clue about what they lead to. Is everyone visiting this site knowledgeable about 'CSPnet' or the other jargon you're using?

  5. #4
    Senior Member foodbiz's Avatar
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    I agree with some of the what has been said....

    1) too much text
    2) I like the flash and all the Jazz (it's called Marketing for the web geeks)


    Good Work

  6. #5
    Junior Member nsmith35244's Avatar
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    Thanks for the feedback.

    I agree, I need to have the site so a visitor can find out what the company is all about within a few seconds. Also, I need to have an easier way to navigate.

    I'm going to re-create a new first page with less text, and a simple summary of what Alligator Ice has to offer. I'll also use simple html for the navigation, most likely through alts on images (so I can keep the company's standard Tempus Sans ITC prefered font without any client-side issues).

    I still have two questions.

    1) Should I make it so the top and/or side bars (depending on how the site is re-done) are frames, in order to save a little download time?
    2) Can I keep some of the images (particularly the fruit background) standard on most pages, to have at least a little visual stimulization? In my view, to draw a user in within 5 seconds, the client needs to be enticed through other means than just text.

    If you have any ideas how I should re-layout the site, arrange the pages, make it all browser-friendly, please, don't hesitate to post it here.

    Thanks again for everyone's feedback.

  7. #6
    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    Don't use frames, and a common image at the top of each page is nice.
    It keeps the same feel throughout the site. The image at the top should
    be a .gif and you can use other images throughout the pages ... maybe
    small .jpg's that can be clicked on for larger size, if the larger size
    is important to see details.

    What a cool business to do a site for ... I'm jealous.

    There's so much room for opportunities here.
    You could allow online ordering of supplies, kits, etc. with credit cards.
    A customer mailing list database for distributors that sign up.

    Take a lot of time to get this one right. You might even be able to
    find some CSS pre-made templates that will fit your site nicely.
    Do a search on Google for "CSS templates".

    Keep us posted on how it's going.


  8. #7
    Junior Member nsmith35244's Avatar
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    I was planning on keeping the same image on the top (a .gif file), and I'm going to try and interpret the black and white logo into that image. I knew frames wasn't the way to go, and naturally, looked at some CSS templates. I'll probably end up going with CSS.

    A good bit of our actual purchasing of materials (such as P.O.P. and kits and such) is done through distributors, so I don't think online ordering will be too useful.

    I'm an employee of Alligator Ice, the "Director of Everything Electronic" as they call me...I'm just in charge of setting up the networking and computers, organizing the electronic stuff, and so forth. It's a fun company. All the slushies I can drink.

  9. #8
    Senior Member foodbiz's Avatar
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    CSS is the way to go!!


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