Rank: 1 Elite
Where to start? This is a bit all over the place really. Your aim with this is to sell something, this is your shopfront, but people aren't going to trust a website that looks like it's owner has given little thought to how their business looks.
Logo. Where is it? I want to know who's website I've come to, but your logo is closer to the bottom of the page than it is the top, hidden away in that photo. Stick it up in that navigation bar and let me see who's website I've come to.
Colours. Light green on yellow just doesn't work. I'm struggling to read it with pretty good vision, consider how that's going to look to a colour blind visitor? The yellow is a pretty garish background as it is, to put an even more garish colour on top of it is never going to end well.
Continuity. The site design changes. Radically. Having different themes for different sections is fine, but completely different site designs is just going to confuse users.
Sale. Seems like this is the wrong way round to me. You've got most of your normal categories in a really obvious colour, but then your sale link is in a colour that gets drowned out and difficult to see. This is the link most people will want to click, make it stand out.
Homepage. Generally, it's a missed opportunity. Have links to some of featured products on the homepage. The testimonials are a nice idea, but poorly executed. They're not the most important thing on your homepage, and it feels like they're being given too much space.
It also took me a minute to realise the bits of text inside the image on the left were links, and why is one of them in a different font to the rest?
Your front page is the place to really engage people. Who are you, what is your website about, what are you selling. At the moment it's only when you look to the bottom of the page and see the logo/vintage pledge that you discover it's a specialist vintage clothes shop, rather than just a general clothes shop.
Rank: 2 Titan
Hi Betsy - I am going to be totally honest with my review. I hope you don't take this the wrong way. I think you've done some things right, but there's a lot that is wrong with your website and improvements would increase your sales considerably.
To be honest I am not sure where to start. Each of the images you posted has a totally different design and each needs a different set of critiques.
The first thing you should do is invest in a template system and make sure everything is consistent everywhere. You should have a header with consistent navigation, a logo and a home button, cart button, and maybe a list of categories. Then people will always know where they are.
I am actually a big fan of making things look different on different pages, rather than going for a boring cookie cutter look, but there needs to be something that ties all the pages together and a consistent header would do this nicely.
Design 1 - orange homepage
The orange is far too strong, and I can't read the green text at all. I had to highlight it to see what it said. I would change this to the white design that is used on all the other pages.
Having testimonials is great, but they seem to float around a bit.
I would like to see more examples of your products on the homepage, afterall that is why people visit the site.
It wasn't until a colleague pointed it out that I realized that the image on the homepage had navigation included in it. A consistent header would solve this problem.
Design 2 - policies page
Apart from the massive red heading this is one of the better pages on the site. I would make the content all fit within the checkered looking background as it just looks broken at the moment. I would also change the red to something more friendly. Finally increasing the line-height will make all that text easier to read (this goes across all areas of the site).
Design 3 - mens clothes
This page is one of the better ones in my opinion. I am not sure why there is a set of links on the left and a set of photos (which are the same links) on the right. That just seems a bit confusing. Also I would make the links on the left underlined so it's clear they are links. They look like plain text at the moment.
The tag cloud at the bottom is quite nice and the colours fit the overall vintage style.
Design 4 - keyword brocade
This one I also think works quite well, although the pink on the dropdown menus is hard to read (contrast is too low). I would consider adding some text explaining what brocade means, as not everyone will know. Being a fashion illiterate man that would include me. You might argue I'm not the target audience... but I may want to buy a nice outfit for my wife in which case I want to know what I'm getting in to.
You are right - you can't see the buy button. Took me a good couple of minutes to realise where it was. The buy button currently looks like an image, but it should look like a button. I would make it green and bevelled so that it jumps from the page. The cart button looks more buttony and the red steals attention from the black and white buy icon above. I would also use a cart icon instead of a $ icon as this is a better recognised metaphor and doesn't have the same negative connotations (ie dollar = spending money - cart = getting new stuff)
I would also put the buy button higher up the page, maybe swapping the size image with the purchase information.
Basically you need to make it as clear as possible how you buy your product as that is how you make your money, and currently the buy button is hidden near the bottom of the page and dressed up as an icon.
Rank: 1 Elite
I'm sorry but this is pretty bad, I will try my best to provide you with good feedback, I know it sucks when there is so much to work on, but in the end, you will be a better designer for it.
I will start from the top. on DV6, since i think that is the best design you have so far, I would make all your pages look like that. (CHECK DV6.JPG SO THIS FEEDBACK MAKES SENSE.
Here goes the content!
I'm working on a mockup of what i mean right now, So i will comment on this later with a link..
For now i just wanted to break the ice.
Rank: 4 Master
I think it would be best if you looked at other sites that sell vintage clothing and take some cues from them in over all structure.
Some points I would like to make are: - Make sure that links and other things that can be clicked on are made obvious that they can, in fact, be clicked on. Don't hide them in pictures like you have on the home page. If I hadn't moused over the picture I would have never known that there were links there. - Make all the buttons and links in the same style so that your customers know what to expect. Don't make them guess. For instance, you said that your customers complain about not being able to find the buy button. The reason is you made the buy button look like a picture and it looks different from the other buttons. Make it look like your view cart button and they'll be able to find it. - Alignment! Alignment! Alignment! People don't like to search for things in unexpected places. - Pick a color scheme, style, and structure and stick to it. Each one of the pages you've displayed look like they could each be from different sites. This confuses people. - You have to make things consistent. For example, on your catalog page where you have choose a vintage era, filter by size, exc., make it all the same size font and I would also make it a different color so it stands out more. - Make things friendly on the eyes. Make all text easy to read by using contrasting colors but don't use colors that are too bright either. - Use white space. Don't smash everything together so that it becomes overwhelming for the customer to look at. - Put the name of the site or store at the top of the page. It should be the first thing the customer sees.
I know everything on your site seems like it would be obvious to find and use, but that is because you designed it. Of course you know where everything is and how to use it. The real challenge comes when you have to step outside of yourself and see it through your customer's eyes. I hope you found this helpful. Best of luck.
Rank: 2 Titan
Hi Betsy - I am trying to give positive feedback here and hopefully this will help as I do not wish to offend, so here goes:
The background color on the home page is a bit too out there and needs toning down. Maybe using something like the rest of the site - white.
Background of the top menu could probably benefit from being a solid color rather than an image as the image can obfuscate the text although you have countered that by making the text absolutely massive and red. Maybe smaller text in the menu and a "friendlier" color may help here. Also use the vertical bar (pipe) instead of the forward slash to separate your menu items will make it look more like a menu rather than breadcrumbs.
Hovering over the top menu items I notice that the bottom half of the top line words select the bottom word, this may be a line-height issue.
Sale, in the top menu, does not change color to show you are hovering over it.
Your use of fonts needs to be more consistent throughout the homepage as well as the whole site. There are many different font families and font sizes all over the place - maybe a structured layout may help with clarity and definitely keeping consistent style throughout.
The green text on the home page is unreadable against the yellow/orange background. You need to look at the site to see if people can read what you write, and if you cannot read it then how will other be able to.
The speech bubbles with user feedback are a great idea but need a better color and placement. Consider a new, more appealing color for the background of the bubbles and with a structured layout they can be placed in a more suitable location, again, with continuity of style and font size.
The image to the left is also a menu but just doesn't look right - Maybe that menu should be placed in a footer and the image be static - or rotating static images.
The red border on the right of the image clashes with the background and has no purpose visually or technically.
White top border doesn't fit - instead of the white border there should be padding between the top menu and the image.
What is the changing colors in the deadly vintage text for? This looks really cheap and nasty - sorry but it looks really bad. Just the static text would be fine, however, you may want to place the text higher on the image because users have to scroll down before they even know what site they are on.
A header containing a logo would also help this situation and give some continuity throughout the whole site.
The pink text in the drop-down is very hard to read and the text is way too big - actually the text in each drop down is a different size. It just doesn't look right...
Now on a technical note:
The styles you have defined are at the top of your site and could so easily be placed into an external CSS file then linked in a header file.
Your site is built using a table layout - should be using divs for flexibility and SEO purposes.
But I can't believe a customer has even wanted to find the buy button. I would not trust this website to buy anything from it simply due to the design of it.
I'd advise finding a template for wordpress or something similar and go from there.
Short and sharp but theres not much to review because there's not any good in the design.
Terrible design. There is so much wrong with it, that I don't know where to start. It is ugly, inconsistent, unusable, out of proportion, annoying and counter intuitive.
I do not wish to be insulting but I think this has to be said. My advise would be to hire a professional web designer or fire the current one.