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Suggestions PLEASE!!!

SuitsYourselfSuitsYourself subscriber Posts: 1
edited August 2008 in Website Critique
I need some ideas and suggestions for my website.. www.suitsyourself.net or www.suitsyourself.com. The website went live in November 2007. Since then I have had over 75,000 hits to the page but less than 20 sales and customers. Most of my customers are storefront owners who were looking for their customers. We deal with manufacturers and a variety of vendors so we can usually get things in when others can`t. I`ve tried to get my customers do do a survey or give a testimonial. For their time they would receive a 20.00 certificate towards their next purchase. As of today, no one has responded. I believe that i have a very fair return policy compared to my competitors and my prices are very competitive. 
Some of my Dilemas: 
*I`m in the process of doin a redesign on my site. My designer has already replaced the banner. Now, were in the process of changing the font and the color of the site. Any suggestions in this area would be great. I am looking to give more life to site while keeping my target customers (church and business women) in mind.
* I am currently in a delima of needing to add "color" and "size" as a search option, but the company who designed my site is stating that it would cost me about $200.00, and I don`t have that extra income at this time.
*I want to start a monthly newsletter. I have ideas for the 1st issue but writing is my worst subject. I am having an issue of putting my ideas on paper while making it sound professional. Then I can`t afford to hire someone to write the newsletter for me.
*I have a blog page but I have no idea of how to utilize it. I don`t know if I should keep it or should I use it as another page. I want to draw customers but I don`t want other people running them away with their comments and opinions.
As far as my checkout page is concerned. I offer paypal and payments on my site which is submit to and processed through Linkpoint. I offer UPS ground shipping and I just added USPS priority shipping. I am not in control of the shipping prices. Their program integrated into the site.
Thank your time and feedback!


  • vwebworldvwebworld subscriber Posts: 40
    The colors of the site give the impression of a retro era (old fashioned)... which is not necessarily bad, if that is your intention.
    You are using ZenCart for your ecommerce engine... it already has a "search" feature. The key is to make sure you use words for which you want people to search in your product titles and/or descriptions.

    Product titles -  I suggest changing your product titles - "DVC2478" does not help your search engine results or help the viewer understand anything about the product. Use real words describing the product in the title. If you need to use DVC2478 - add it as a model number ("products model") - also a feature of Zen Cart.
    Your product images could be smaller (the thumbnail images that appear on your store).

    Blog - If you are considering a blog, I would not use the one embedded in your online store. Because it is not search engine friendly. Instead use WordPress or another such blog program in another directory.
    In general, I do not know the stats on the market for clothes such as yours online. People may just prefer to purchase clothes at a bricks and mortar store, because they can try them on and see how it looks.
    You might be able to overcome that with competitive pricing and a return policy, but I`m not sire.
    vwebworld8/12/2008 12:54 PM
  • DefMallDefMall subscriber Posts: 2 Member
    Suits -
    I agree with Roland and just wanted to add some points as well.
    1) The website is called SuitsYourself and your home page talks about quality clothing at affordable pricing. However, as a `man`, I think of suits as the ones `I` wear...so when I got to your site I had to click around a bit to figure out this is women`s clothing. And there is nothing wrong with that...but you might want to use your home page to better flesh out the message.
    2) I wanted to `second the motion` about use of the part numbers. Under each part number should be a 2 or 3 word description that uses Keywords a search engine will pick up.
    3) also wanted to second the motion about the Blog. Use the section they give you just to drop small `updates` about your site...but also to put a link to a Wordpress or Blogger blog. Blogging is a very good way to get traffic if you use some SEO techniques and can get a readership.
    4) Your home page mentions that you are a "Christian-based business". I would either explain that better....so the sentence explains why it`s relevant to your store...or  get the line off of your home page and onto your `about us` section. There is nothing wrong with being a Christian-based business...I am just asking if it`s relevant to your business model. If it IS, flesh it out and make it a valuable feature. If it`s not, decide if it matters to use your home page to say it.
    In all, I like your site and I`d like to see you do well!
  • SuitsYourselfSuitsYourself subscriber Posts: 1
    I definitely agree with you about the color.. It gives me a depressed feeling.. lol. Retro isn`t my intention. I want something warm, sophisticated, and inviting.. as well as modern and updated. 
    The company that developed my website never informed me that customers could search by color or size, if I would add it into my description. I was wanting to add that feature to my advanced search options. Thank you for this valuable and cost saving information.
    The product title is the name of Company Abbreviations and the product number.
    I am not sure as to the online market either. I have about 20 different website links listed in my favorites but only 5 have updated their site with the new catalogs. All of the other companies haven`t updated anything since Spring 08 and Fall 07.  Is there anywhere that I could go to find out the stats?
  • SuitsYourselfSuitsYourself subscriber Posts: 1
    It`s in my plans to redesign my home page. I just don`t have a clue as to what. Currently, my wesbite company is working on new fonts and different color schemes for me to choose from.  I am up for any suggestions on color and home page designs that would fit my target audience.
    I`m definitely gonna get started on updating my item description. I didn`t realize what a major role that played.
    I like the idea of using it to give updates. How would I add the links and what would it do? How can I change the type of blog program that I currenlty have embedded?
    Christian based business doesn`t have anything to do with what I`m selling but more of who I am. I definetly agree with and I am gonna take your advice.
  • DefMallDefMall subscriber Posts: 2 Member
    I don`t want to sound `sexist`, but if your cusotmer base is female...and feminie females given the product mix you offer...I would be inclined to get away from brown and dark yellow and move towards Pink, White, Light Yellow and Red.  I am sure a female can support or effectively shoot down this opinion...but I would certian shoot for something `pretty`.
    You need to contact your web provider to talk about HOW to use/change the blog format. I am thinking that you do not need to really `change` anything...just make sure you use SHORT (2-3 sentences) posts on the oon-site blog and end every post with "Visit our In-Depth Blog at www.SuitsYourselfBlog.blogspot(or Webpages or Tumblr or whoever).com
  • vwebworldvwebworld subscriber Posts: 40
    Just to clarify about your product names:
    Instead of "DVC2478" use words like: "Skirt cami 3 pc set" even better, words that describe the suit. Keeping in mind these could be words that people use to find your product on Google.
    Enter the "DVC2478"  in the product model field.
    For your description, you could copy the words used in the description that is shown in the photo of the product... and include color and size options.
    vwebworld8/12/2008 5:50 PM
  • SuitsYourselfSuitsYourself subscriber Posts: 1
    I thank you for your comment.. but please explain how do you get that feeling. Is it because of the statement that it`s a christian-based business? I don`t have this up there to leverage my business. My statement could hurt it just as easily as it could  help it. There are people from every religion on the internet who may not support christian owned businesses. As far as marketing, I feel that it would benefit me to keep that off of my page, but I won`t compromise my faith in order build my business. In no way am I using God to maximize my profits. Yes, I want my business to prosper, but I also must acknowledge God in all things that I do and this is priority for me. Also, I feel that people should have a right to know what type of business that they`re supporting. We should stop trying to figure out the intentions of businesses and be happy that it`s being done regardless of what the motive may be. Anything done without good intentions will eventually fail or come to light.
    Religion and business not mingling is a matter of opinion. I`ve watched people come into my mother`s store to purchase a suit. Sometimes they were down and depressed but when they left they would leave with burdens lifted and without a suit. They thought they were coming for one thing but God knew different.
  • VideographyVideography subscriber Posts: 401 Silver Level Member

    I thank you for your comment.. but please explain how do you get that feeling. Is it because of the statement that it`s a christian-based business? I don`t have this up there to leverage my business. Your entire "About Us" page is a testimonial of your faith.  It doesn`t
    provide one word about the business or why someone should buy from you.
  • DefMallDefMall subscriber Posts: 2 Member
    Deft -
    We all appreciate your strong feelings about religion...but I asked Suits about the use of `Christian-based business` back at the beginning of this thread, and she already replied that she was going to make some changes to the site that remove or play down the expression.
  • SuitsYourselfSuitsYourself subscriber Posts: 1
    I thank you all for the clarity that I was asking for.  I can now see the light.  After reading the "About Us" page, I am able to see what you all were speaking off . I was focusing more on my mother and what she has accomplished instead of Suits Yourself. The only thing that I said about Suits Yourself is that it`s the offspring of Stella`s Fashions. I guess I was trying to re-invent Stella`s.
    Craig, I am new to the internet/e-commerce scene, so I`m a baby that`s learning how to walk, when it comes to internet technology and website designs. I thought an e-commerce business would be very simple, but boy was I dead wrong. I do agree that it would be beneficial for me to consult with a marketing firm, but that is something that I can`t afford at this moment. For the moment, I will have to learn by trial and error. Also, with the help of you all here at StartUp Nation.
    Once again, thank you all and keep the comments coming
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