Home – New Forums Tell me straight… Site for review

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  • #969916
    Meli
    Member
    • Total posts: 6
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    Hi Guys, Here it is!!

    Thank your for your comments on my thread in the business start up forum.

    I know there are plenty of issues with the site – good and bad!! look forward to all of your advise!!

    1. What needs reviewing?
    General running, navigation, visual impact, anything els really etc

    2. What does your business do?
    Sells motion reference material (animation reference) to the animation industry.

    3. Who is your target market?
    Gaming companies, VFX Studios and Animation houses, freelance 3D artists, Students, 3d Colleges and uni etc

    #1041542
    Karl
    Member
    • Total posts: 55
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    Hi Meli

    First of all, let me congratulate you for tackling such a niche market and putting together such a great Ecommerce site. It’s looks great, is easy to navigate and has a reasonable amount of content. Including all the shooting you have done I can just imagine how many hours you’ve put into the site. I hope you are getting the talent at ‘mates rates’ :-)

    There are a couple of BIG issues though…

    1. There are no heading tags whatsoever. No h1, h2, h3… zilch. This is SEO 101 and your organic search results are sure to be suffering as a result.

    2. The 55 second flash video on the front page is a gargantuan 18.5MB. To suck down 18.5MB in 55 seconds, is impossible for almost any PC connected to the internet. (A few lucky Tasmanians on the NBN trial might go close).

    The average ADSL1 connection would take 10 minutes to download that video. I’m sure you can imagine what a 55 second clip stretched out to 10 minutes would look like! Actually, try it for yourself; browse to your front page, hold Ctrl+F5 to refresh your browser. That will show you how a first-time visitor will see your site.

    Also, the video ends and just leaves a blank white space on the screen. Maybe it could hold on the last frame instead?

    3. The logo on the subscribe page is distorted for me (Firefox 3.6.10).

    Hope I didn’t come across too negative (maybe should have put the bad news first?)

    Best wishes

    #1041543
    Past-Member
    Member
    • Total posts: 1,815
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    I’m a designer/illustrator and it’s great what you are doing – however … I am waiting for an appt and viewing on my iPhone. Nothing shows on the home page other than the menus. Just a blank white area. As iPhones don’t show Flash I would suggest you do something simple with good intro text as what your videos do for your customer. And have small screen images only. Then a link to another page with sample files to download in various sizes and formats. Must go. Cheers.

    PS All pricing should have AUD with them, especially so overseas customers will know the money will be converted. Are you using PayPal? That should also be mentioned.

    #1041544
    marketingweb
    Member
    • Total posts: 625
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    Hi Meli,

    Firstly thanks for your PM, sorry it took me a while to get to this.

    I like you concept but I don’t think your site sells it well – kaca’s comments are right on the money.

    For me when I get to the site, I get a big white box in the middle for the first 20 seconds or so – I thought your site was broken. Then when it finally came up, there is an “image of text” which is incredibly hard to read. Images of text (rather than actual text on the page) are almost always bad, and are definately bad for SEO. In this case because it’s been badly resized I have to force myself to read it, despite my brain screaming no!

    Even though you have put work into it, Id completely get rid of this section in the center, as it just makes the site look cheap, is hard to read, and doesn’t provide any value. In addition, the lack of text on the page will make ranking very difficult.

    Also SEO wise, I think you need to work out what the keywords you are targeting are, and ensure your content and titles etc actually contain this. So far the only thing you have any chance of ranking for is the phrase “endless reference”, which means you won’t get any visitors from Google unless they know your company name. Finding correct keywords may be a challenge as it’s such a unique and almost abstract concept so it’s hard to know what people may be typing to search for your product, but it’s VERY important.

    I’d also strongly recommend you read my blog post on Title & Description tags: SEO Basics – the Title & Description Tags

    Your site also doesn’t tell me really obviously what it’s about – and i can’t see just from looking. Maybe you need some larger visual images that show exactly what you do. I initially couldn’t find any direct competitors to compare to, but taking a look at the following sites in related industries may show the sort of standard you need to get to. Most you are probably familiar with but worth another look.

    Sites to check:
    http://www.istockphoto.com/
    http://www.fotolia.com/
    http://www.thoughtequity.com/
    http://www.bbcmotiongallery.com/
    http://www.animationfactory.com/en/video/ (I’m not a big fan of this one)
    http://www.artbeats.com/
    http://www.animationmentor.com/

    I did finally find a direct competitor, and their site while not great tells me what they do a lot quicker – “The human motion database for all animators”
    http://www.principlesofmotion.com/
    These sell by DVD – not sure what that tells us, but the site is at least worth a look. As I said, I don’t think it’s great, but it is at least clear what the purpose of their product is.

    Hope this isn’t all too harsh or overwhelming. Let me know if you need any professional consulting on SEO, user interface improvement strategies etc.

    Matt

    #1041545
    marketingweb
    Member
    • Total posts: 625
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    You should also get your site listed on this guide:
    http://www.navone.org/HTML/Links_3D.htm

    #1041547
    marketingweb
    Member
    • Total posts: 625
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    Hi Mel,

    Just went to your site, and despite the lack of animation it looks basically the same.

    The main thing I think you need to fix is to make that centre section a combination of text and images. To me the “photo of text” that is there is still the worst part of the site as it doesn’t render clearly – fix this and replace with actual text and then just the images themselves below and it will look much better.

    Matt

    #1041548
    Meli
    Member
    • Total posts: 6
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    Thank you, will do :-)

    #1041549
    tr3nton
    Member
    • Total posts: 68
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    Why don’t you chuck something (text, links) in the yellow bar at the bottom (footer)?

    Also, is there a reason for the inconsistency in the space between navigation links at the top?

    Ok these are minor things..

    I just noticed on this page: http://endlessreference.com/Products/human-motion/subscription.html , at least one of the form items is hidden behind the image (on Chrome – unsure about other browsers)

    Ta,
    Trent

    #1041550
    Communicate with Karen
    Member
    • Total posts: 14
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    Hi I checked out your site.

    I am no marketing expert so can’t help there, but I did notice 3 typos on the front page.

    believable, your and saving.

    Also in your phrase ‘Download, Analyse and Apply’ you have spelt it analize on the front page and analyse in the ‘Subscribe Now’ section.

    Anyway a few minor points.

    Good on you for creating the website!

    Cheers Karen

    #1041551
    Leisa D
    Member
    • Total posts: 563
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    Hi, the content text looks like an image, not actual text that can be found by search engine spiders.

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