I've a blog that covers men's gear, gadgets, style and similar stuff. I'm looking for your expert opinions about the design, color scheme, content, navigation and any other thing that you think is not fitting well. So share your opinions and let me know what do you think.
Also please tell me how to make it more professional and more user friendly.
Blog URL is http://www.fancymaterial.com/
First I want to let you know that I am not a man but am a fellow designer. That being said I like the overall set-up of the site. Seems very user-friendly. I especially like the top menu, it looks very professional and drop-downs work nicely. That darn ad, first thing under the title of your latest item, though is very distracting. I expected the one following the item but not the first one. I like the way the headings on the left are similar to the ones on the right but opposite, however I am not sure that particular shade of blue is the right color. I don't know what would be better, but it doesn't really stand out enough for me. Or maybe it would be a fine color but use a different, more compelling font. Maybe continue with the font used in the main menu. Finally your Title just doesn't fit with the rest of the site. Maybe it's just too small, I can't quite put my finger on it. Many of these observations of course are subjective, but I am speaking to what I see at first look. Hope this is helpful. A.
There is too much contrast between the black background and the white foreground.
I would suggest changing the black background to a lighter color.
Thanks for your comments, I'll definitely try to change the shade and thinking of changing the ad position.
I'm unable to get your point about title, did you checked the site on mobile or what? Please elaborate.
Thanks for your comment. It will be good if you recommend some light color that would look great.
i think this looks more great if u try to do something with the main heading.. add something with fancy material ..a small and different fonts is good option too..
- Layout is poor. above the fold literally gives me nothing but advertisement.
- Overall poor use of screen real-estate, as i scroll down there is literally nothing that catches my eye besides one huge image per screen.
- Navigation is poor — i d like to see featured articles, pictures with texts etc. Something that would be engaging.
- As for design — it surely looks like no one put much effort into pixel-polishing stuff in photoshop, even the logo is ugly and pixelated.
To put into the perspective, i d say bbc.co.uk or http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/ would be good examples of how decent informational website should look like.
@Lieto: Thanks for your time. Please take a look as I have made some changes as per your comments:
1. I removed ads from homepage. Is there any thing to make the layout attractive?
2. (I'm unable to get any meaning from your this statement, more explanation would be highly appreciated)
3. I added Trending posts in the sidebar having big images. Now looking good or not?
4. I'm going to order a logo very soon, other than logo, do I need to make any change in the design?
I would love to see any more comments.
I am a fellow web designer. The black background is a big contrast, robin's egg blue - very light shade is great for trust with psychology. I like the social popup that you have. What plugin did you use?
Best of luck!
As well, I do agree with the fact about the pixelation of the logo. I would make the menu text a different color from the black as well.
a couple of things i think could be better.
I agree that the colors just aren't quite there yet. again not sure what it is. sorry
Your logo/title is somewhat lacking. The site is called 'fancy material' but the title isn't that fancy at the moment.
I am getting a slight shift on the dropdowns so they don't line up with the menu button... is this meant to happen? I'm on FF25 on Win7
The 'what's hot' bar at the bottom is good but i might never make it that far. You could look at having it at the bottom of the screen on loading and as the user scrolls it minimises but stays at the bottom of the screen. Or just have a minimize button for the user to do it manually.
Thanks for all of your valuable comments and because of your opinions I able to make things right. There are somethings that still left, but I think I'm heading in the right direction.
I recently add a logo, please have a look on it and review. The next thing on my to-do list is color scheme tuning.
I think you are doing a good job in terms of usability (at least removing the banners). Although not all pieces of puzzle came together yet and design isn't always consistent i think its moving into the right direction.
I d change the font on the main menu to something more common and put some fast navigation categories / filters to the top right next to the first article so people could filter what they want to see easily.
More advanced step would be to make it somewhat responsive — its a shame that most of my notebooks screen is filled with background and most of your audience would either use a tablet or mid/high range notebook with a good resolution screen. That gives it a look and feel of 10yrs old website which isn't good when you are reviewing new gadgets.
As for the logo — its bad. Its a good illustration to an article named "my first logotype" but its definitely not a modern, sleek and professional piece of work.
- I'm not sure about typography you are using in the menu, it's very thick and hard to read when it comes to long words, like in the sub-menu for the Interior>Hardware
- The spacing in the side - menu between between trending ideas look not enough for me. Is description belongs to the image above or below? It's ok, when two topics are very different, but if you speak about same gadget in two topics, it becomes confusing...
- Why you logo is different from the one of the About Us page? It's not consistent and confusing.
All the best,
Viewed using Firefox on my desktop
Going by some of the previous comments, I'm guessing you've made some changes, so this is based on how it is now.
I'm not a big fan of black, I guess some might associate it with "elegance", but IMHO a dark grey might look better.
I'm definately not a fan of pop-ups. IMHO make the Social Media stuff available and even obvious but not "in your face desperation".
The photos look top quality to me, so much so that I had trouble trying to keep my focus jumping back and forth from the content column and sidebar.
No big deal I suppose but maybe if the sidebar were made distinct with some sort of separator or the images in it smaller sized?
Navigation was good, though I don't think you need both Advertise and Submit to go to the same page.
Lastly, I would use (a smaller version of?) the header logo in the About Us, Disclaimer, Contact, and Advertise-Submit pages.
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