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Does my website really look like a 8 year old built it?

artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
edited November 2007 in Website Critique
After being ranked #2 in the Startupnation competition, in the "Hightest Vote-Getters" category, our traffic went through the roof. One feedback was "your website looks like a 8 year old built it". Of course, they could do a great job for me for $$$$. Could you please review it? Is it clear, confusing, user-friendly for potential customers, etc...


Thank you so very much


  • ToddFToddF subscriber Posts: 3
    Well I personally dont think it looks that bad. It`s simple and not an Amazon.com or anything but, sometimes you cant listen to every comment.  If we changed our site based solely on one comment, we`d be making 50 changes a day just to suit 50 people.
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    Thank you Todd! You are so right!
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    I think you have a great point there . I think that my website is not very clear!
  • stonesledgestonesledge subscriber Posts: 608 Silver Level Member
    I think it is simple and clean. the only change I would make is at the top. i would make that header a full logo and tagline. This can be a simple change that you can do or someone heere maybe able to whip something up for you as a favor. Other than that, I think it looks great. the products are great, very cool! Congrats on your win!
  • John49John49 subscriber Posts: 0
    Your site doesn`t look like a 8th grader made it, but it does suffer from the limitations and standardization of all Microsoft Office Live websites.  Almost anytime you use a website building all in one application, there are limitations... and resulting website look similar.
    A quick example is your logo name (black letters on white background) in your header. It would look better is if was integrated into the header ... same background colors as your header rather than a white box containing your name.
    There are other layout.design issues that give the impression it was a "homemade site"... centered text, lines around tables.....
    John4911/12/2007 5:45 PM
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    Thank you Erin! I made the change and I have to say, it looks much better. Thank you again for you input.
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    Hi John,
    I know what you mean about limitations: very frustrating...but I erased the lines, some of the centered text (managed to loose my home page in the process..."do not panic"!) and I think I can match my logo background color to the Microsoft template.
    Thank you again...Great advice!
  • MackVVVMackVVV subscriber Posts: 0
    Youre way to harsh. its not made haphazardly. OIts quite simple, straight to the point and natural.Especially
    important for older pets who are not as "flexible". The feeders reduce
    the need of leaning, bending and stress on the muscles and joints.Its also equally important to older pet owners who are not that flexible bending so much anymore to put food in the crate.Anyway. the nice , real pictures are the center of attention of your site so its pretty well.
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    "Especially for older pets and their owners, who are not as flexible..." I like that! a little humour in there...Thanks for the good words.
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    I got rid of the top logo for now (still working on it) and changed the colors: the orange stripe really poped out! never really thought about it before! I also wrapped the text around the pictures on a few pages...take a look again if you`d like  www.whineranddiner.net  Yes, the  logo at the bottom of the pages is a little stretched out... Thank you very much for your clever suggestions Steve.
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    What do you mean number of product photos?
  • artalacarteartalacarte subscriber Posts: 4
    I did make some changes. Please, just don`t tell me it`s too red...I actuallly like it! It looks like  "William-Sonoma Elegant" (Thanks Nikole!)...I will work on my Logo issue.
    Thank you so much for your help.

    www.whineranddiner.net (if you`d like to look at the newest changes)
  • vwebworldvwebworld subscriber Posts: 40
    Maybe something more like this sample site?
    (based on a free template)
    vwebworld11/15/2007 8:46 AM
  • stonesledgestonesledge subscriber Posts: 608 Silver Level Member
    What a difference! I think it looks great! Great Job!
  • CoveredBridgeCellarsCoveredBridgeCellars subscriber Posts: 4
    My thoughts:
    I think some sort of insignia would help with your branding. I saw on one of the boxes that Whiner and Diner was there, but that logo is not on the site anywhere--I did see it way at the bottom of the history page though. 
    The site could still use some refinement, one thing that is confusing is the nav bar--it has too many choices. The layout could be more logical as others have already pointed out:
    Home: About Us: Order: Contact: News: Links
    The photography could use some work.
    On the homepage you have several "messages". For example:
    ECO-CHIC PET FEEDERS AND BEDS for Posh Pets and Tasteful People
    Stick with your name and one tag line that you want people to most remember about your brand. For example:
    Luxury Accesories for Dogs and Cats, or, Luxury Class Accesories for Discrimiating Pets.
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