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Web Site Review


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12 replies to this topic

#1 tomsk

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 06:44 AM

General
Is this site completed or under construction?

Complete

If completed:
How long has the site been up?

Approx 5 weeks

SEO
Do you have incoming links?

Not yet - but starting the process

What keywords are you targeting?

Plastering - Plastering Quote - Online Plastering Quote - Plastering a Room.

Do you want your code reviewed for errors or improvements?

Yes please

Marketing

I have tried local press adverts for services (small box advert) but drew a very small response - I am running a PPC campaign in the UK that produces a number of enquires everyday but Google stats show 71% bounce rate.

Who is your target audience? Think about:

People who do not have time to wait in for tradesmen to show up at the weekends or the evening– people who are looking for a more professional approach to the building trade.

Gender / both sexes
Nationality UK Based
Age Range 21 / 65
Income/Education level – not important

The more you tell us about your target audience, the better. We don't know them- you do!

I am hoping that like many things people are turning to the internet to find what they are looking for at a time that suits them, people are willing to buy cars online, fish online and any number of things so why not book your home improvements online.

Why is your site different from sites selling/offering similar info/goods/services? Why will someone want to do business you?

I am not sure there is a direct comparison with my site as other sites operate with plasterers signing up and then being fed leads for them to quote on, my site aims to give you a quote by return with the minimum of questions and without asking for you sign you life away before we will give you a quote.

How important is usability?

Very

What is the purpose of the site? (inform, sell, online community, support B&M business, contact info only, etc)

To sell a concept that with time always against you so why not get a quote at 9.30pm from the comfort of your armchair and book one of plasterers to come and do the work when you decide.


Design
Do you want design suggestions?

Yes please

I have in the last 4 weeks had requested 220 quotes on the site, not one has transferred to a booking – so something is missing.

Note to fully use the quote system and receive a quote a valid email address is required, so you will not be able to see the amount of the quote unless the email is valid – I don’t expect those reviewing the site to give details.

The website is the one in my signature below.

Thanks for any input.


#2 1dmf

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 07:20 AM

not bad at all.

first impression was good, I'm not much of a flash fan, but I didn't find your banner to be offensive and the pages load fast, a definate bonus.

You seem to have an issue with the home page and the testimonial being forced down due to content overflow it looks like, but the other pages at quick glance seem ok.

The top banner is large and on machines with smaller resolutions it will take up the entire page at first (unless you have different websites for different screen sizes - i didn't check)

I did a quick validation and you do have errors...

QUOTE



Validation Output: 8 Errors

#3 mal4mac

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 08:45 AM

I also don't like Flash, especially if it is taking up the most important part of your website (first page above the fold). It's irritating the first time, and very irritating any subsequent time...

"Together we create a special world" ???

This is rather overblown for plastering ... you aren't Oxfam.

Why do you repeat the navigation at the top and down the side?

The text about getting a quote is quite good.

In summary, I would ditch everything above (and including!) "Together we create a special world" so you get the good & non-irritating stuff above the fold.





#4 tomsk

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 08:57 AM

QUOTE(mal4mac @ May 27 2009, 09:45 AM) View Post
"Together we create a special world" ???

This is rather overblown for plastering ... you aren't Oxfam.


mal4mac - Changed it this morning and never uploaded it - so as of now it has gone.

#5 1dmf

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 09:17 AM

mal4mac, i agree in part, or at least remove the navigation across top and shrink down the flash bit so you get some of the website at least above the fold!

#6 BBCoach

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 12:14 PM

Nice site. Very clean and to the point. One thing me thinks thou lackest. A visual portfolio of the different types of plaster jobs completed. Proof tends to be in the pudding.

#7 tomsk

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Posted 28 May 2009 - 02:40 AM

QUOTE(BBCoach @ May 27 2009, 01:14 PM) View Post
Proof tends to be in the pudding.


Noted - on list of things to do


#8 1dmf

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Posted 28 May 2009 - 03:46 AM

nich thought BBCoach,

some snazzy finished piccys and even WIP (as long as the builders have kept a clean working environment) can go a long way.

#9 scouseflip

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Posted 28 May 2009 - 07:52 AM

Nice site and a really good idea - I'd use a service like this one if I was going to have any plastering done! I like the look at the site and I think the banner works really well in letting users know what to do and is a nice use of Flash... however, I don't think you need this on every page, just the homepage, and could use the space more effectivly on the other pages.

I think it makes sense to include the vertical and horizontal nav from a user perspective - the options are always on screen, even with that chunky header.

You're getting some issues on some of the pages with the main content being pushed to the bottom of the page - only happening in IE6, and not happening on the homepage, just some of the other ones ('about' and 'contact' for example).

I don't think that there is enough emphasis on the selling point of the site - convenience. Its a great selling point for a website imo as that is one of the reasons why so many people use the internet instead of more traditional routes to enquirey. I realise that it is mentioned in the body text but I don;t think you can rely on people reading this with any great attention (some will but others - like me - will just skim and will only really notice stuff that is displayed prominantly. The flash movie is short enough to include this sort of a message - e.g. 'Let us do the hard work for you', 'Quotes from the comfort of your armchair'. Maybe also push a no pushy salesmen message?

I also think you could benefit ferom a stronger call to actiopn at the top of the page - a 'request your free, no-obligation quote here link/button in the flash maight be effective? To be fair its not as if the menus are too long for the user to find the page but I have found it never hurts to put it under their noses!

On the request a quote process, I think a few help links could be useful - What is 'skimming only' for example (I have never heard this term before and it is one of the first questions asked)?

Regarding your comments about converting the quotes to booking, I would guess that if there is a problem, it is not down to the site itself - what is your follow up procedure once a quote has been placed? If you don't book the job straight away, do you go back to the customers with a special offer or anything like that? As a lead generation mechanism, I can't see why the site would fail to produce a decent quality of prospect, esopecially as they are giving a decent amount of info - they should be fairly serious in order to go ahead with the form.

I reckon its quite likely that people are using the site as a research tool - a first/early step on their road to the final purchase - if so, you are going to need to keep in touch with them while they weigh up their options and make their decision. Maybe even ask an extra question in the request - 'When are you planning to carry out the work?'. This would let you contact them at a time when they are plannig to make their final decision (or it might just show you that the leads you have generated so far will convert over a longer time period than you had expected).

Finally, your title tags are all the same and as such do not really describe the different pages. From a user perspective as much as an SEO perspective, this needs looking at.

Nice site overall!

#10 mal4mac

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Posted 28 May 2009 - 11:26 AM

QUOTE(1dmf @ May 27 2009, 10:17 AM) View Post
mal4mac, i agree in part, or at least remove the navigation across top and shrink down the flash bit so you get some of the website at least above the fold!


I would just get rid. I would rather have the Oxfam punch line...

But if you *must* have it, shrink it certainly and scrap the animation after first viewing.

You can also experiment -- put up a Flash version for a month, a non-flash version, and a smaller flash version, and see which works best.

Google recommend having adsense ads top centre on your page, and I have found that to be far more effective than anything else. This might translate to your situation -- have the most important part of your page top centre.

Also I have removed animated ads from my site -- they are just naff and, my experiments suggest. draw people away from reading the better stuff. Your daft morph figure is likely to do the same. people will be watching that rather than reading your useful text.


#11 BBCoach

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Posted 28 May 2009 - 01:12 PM

Or you could utilize the Flash on the home page to show transitional works. Huh? Show the before and after pics of jobs previously done.

#12 torka

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Posted 28 May 2009 - 03:30 PM

QUOTE(mal4mac @ May 28 2009, 12:26 PM) View Post
You can also experiment -- put up a Flash version for a month, a non-flash version, and a smaller flash version, and see which works best.

Or you could run a real-live A/B split test using Google's Website Optimizer (it's free and works a right treat).

--Torka mf_prop.gif

#13 tomsk

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Posted 30 May 2009 - 07:14 AM

Thank you all for your input so far - most of which I shall be taking on board and changing over the course of next week.

Torka I had taken a quick look at the Website Optimizer from google and thought that it looked over complicated , a second look confirms that's not the case and will implemented some testing this week.

Thank you all again for taking time to look and any other suggestion would be welcome.




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