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241 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 95877 15-Jan-2012 16:31 Send private message

Hi there - please have a look at my site - www.shackchat.co.nz

This is a site to list requirements for property to rent or buy, and also obtain feedback in the 'property den' of a property you might be looking to buy.

There are lots of sites for properties - this is for somebody looking for a property. Contact could come from propery agents or property owners. The lister defines who they want to hear from, property style etc.

The construct is the renter/buyer doesn't need to scan lots of sites with listings - owners come to them. Also private owners can reply and possibly save fees by dealing direct. (and/or split fee saving with purchaser)

The property den can have anybody vote in a poll on a property, to give other feedback you can either reply to the list (will be moderated), or email/PM directly to the lister - which won't be published.

There are links to GVs, tips for propery inspections etc.

Ken to feedback re:

- concept
- pitfalls
- use of forum style software - might create a custom site later if it gets traction

Many thanks

Mark

PS Test Login - user TEST99, p/w TEST




Mark Ascroft
haarc limited
dunedin

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497 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 22


  Reply # 569168 15-Jan-2012 18:28 Send private message

Im just going to be blunt, as if I was in the same siuation I would want to know (so please take it constructively).


The splash page:
It needs to go, it just slows down anyone returning to your site via the URL, plus it really has no purpose as this could be noted on the front page.


The look:
It is not plesent to look at. You have area's where you have green text on green and the text with background is overpowering in places where it is not easy to read.

The logo is in complete contrast to the rest of the site, you need to change it to blend in. (ie give it a transparent background).

Overall in my mind the colours around the site need a bit of work. Possibly try red and white like in your logo?

I would also try and simply your front page further, at present it is cluttered. You can still have the same information showing, just try and bring the important area's to the front (ie darker colours, different background shade etc) and push the less important topic's to the back (ie lighter colours, a background which blends with the rest of the site). 

Menu's:
You need to simplify these menu's. At first visit if the user is not familiar with forum sotware they will not know where to go. My suggestion would be to remove the "Forum" and "Whats new" at the very least, possibly more.

What is the difference between "Buying" and "The property den"?


Other:     
You NEED a tutorial. Hide away all the complicated links and make a clear and concise way to progress through the listing process with help, with clear instructions. 

Get people who you know, that are not very computer savy to look through it, try and use it without help and get feedback off them. This is VERY important as your target audience may not be very computer literate.            


If you have done all this, at this stage If I would be looking at other sites around the place and getting inspiration off each of them, trying to refine your menu system, trying to refine your look, trying to polish every aspect of the site to the best of your ability. Test it some more, refine some more etc. Good things take time!

497 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 22


  Reply # 569174 15-Jan-2012 18:36 Send private message

Just to add, a few other notes:

It would be a good idea if you have not already to build in a custom form to the posting process. Ie if you are starting a topic you fill out all fields to do with your property (this includes a automatic google maps location). This helps greaty with consistancy which will be very important to your site suceeding.

1151 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 35


  Reply # 569178 15-Jan-2012 18:50 Send private message

I agree with the above, the splash page needs to go. Pointless having a page with an "enter" link on it, one of my pet peeves when going to sites on the web. 

The logo, is that JPEG? It just looks very compressed. I would make it a transparent GIF, but that's just me.

Personally I think there are too many colours and the colours are too garish for my liking. I wouldn't even stay for long on the site as I think the colours are too overbearing.  

The writing in the "pinkish" areas, I find them too long. I for one don't like reading right across the page.
Maybe you could split the text into two cells, rather than have the long lines.

 




Apple: Have it their way
Android: Have it your way

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886 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 569250 15-Jan-2012 21:57 Send private message

Just my few cents also as an iPad user. Site looks good on iPad Safari. I think the colours, while quite bright, are fine.
I agree with above about the splash screen, it's pretty much redundant, and much less good looking than the actual site.

Also agree with above re the logo, can see artifacts around the text. The Facebook connect and Username / Password / Remember Me fields overlap the white banner.

Otherwise I think it looks good, best of luck to you.

Cheers,
Joseph

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 569279 16-Jan-2012 00:09 Send private message

I've got the facebook over lap banner thing mentioned above too.

The dark colours are the culprits, that dark forest green is too strong and clashes with the orange behind the buttons. Think iPhones man, someone else has already done the interface development / style work for you. In paint I just swapped out the dark green for a dark charcoal colour and it instantly looked better.

I also got hit by the big full screen width notes on the front page. If you have to have them, perhaps give the option to close each note so it can be hidden/removed etc once I have read and accepted it.



241 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 569341 16-Jan-2012 10:05 Send private message

Thanks for comments all. Will be working through these today.

Mark




Mark Ascroft
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Vodafone NZ

  Reply # 569387 16-Jan-2012 11:42 Send private message

Trend Micro gives a HIGH risk level notification messasge when I go to your site.
Particuarly page http://www.shackchat.co.nz/listings/content.php

The alert is for the url http://www.cookaround.com/cook/robots.php

"The latest tests indicate that this site contains malicious software or could defraud visitors. -Categorised as: Sites that directly or indirectly facilitate the distribution of malicious software or source code"

 

So perhaps you have an infection on your site?




Broadcast Engineer Media Services Group Vodafone New Zealand

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  Reply # 569389 16-Jan-2012 11:55 Send private message





109 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 569390 16-Jan-2012 12:01 Send private message

Great idea!

I'm currently looking for a house myself at this stage so I might be interested.

However yes, the Splash screen needs to go, I like that you're using Vbulletin as your software. It's a great system but be careful of spammers and registration spam.

The theme needs to go, colours are too bright and does not make pleasant reading.

Have a look around some of the themes you can purchase and customize there on, some of them are really nicely designed.

Otherwise best of luck!




241 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 2


  Reply # 569693 16-Jan-2012 22:44 Send private message

OK - mods as follows:

1. Got rid of the splash screen using .htaccess (another learning)
2. Changed the colours - am I getting closer re this? (agree logo still needs to be transparent or something)
3. Tweaked the short cuts on left to make guides and tools more prominent from short cuts to forms to listings. I probably still need to beef up the guides.
4. Reduced image size to prevent overlap with login boxes - seems OK on my ipad now
5. Highly coloured notices now in white - NB: these are dismissable if you log in (still pretty wide tho)


Other:
a. Buying is listing reqs for a property to buy, property den is looking for feedback from other members of a property you have found somewhere (not on this site)
b. Still need to get rid of Forums link at leat
c. Google Maps - the site is about listing requirements not listing properties so doesn't really apply, except possibly for the property den
d. Yes all listings use a form except for general property questions which has a drop down list for nature of question.


ZollyMonsta/Mauricio - do you still get those virus reports - upgraded tonight and interested to hear if that has fixed those reports.

Thanks

Mark




Mark Ascroft
haarc limited
dunedin

1295 posts

Uber Geek
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  Reply # 569705 16-Jan-2012 23:35 Send private message

ascroft: OK - mods as follows:

1. Got rid of the splash screen using .htaccess (another learning)
2. Changed the colours - am I getting closer re this? (agree logo still needs to be transparent or something)
3. Tweaked the short cuts on left to make guides and tools more prominent from short cuts to forms to listings. I probably still need to beef up the guides.
4. Reduced image size to prevent overlap with login boxes - seems OK on my ipad now
5. Highly coloured notices now in white - NB: these are dismissable if you log in (still pretty wide tho)


Other:
a. Buying is listing reqs for a property to buy, property den is looking for feedback from other members of a property you have found somewhere (not on this site)
b. Still need to get rid of Forums link at leat
c. Google Maps - the site is about listing requirements not listing properties so doesn't really apply, except possibly for the property den
d. Yes all listings use a form except for general property questions which has a drop down list for nature of question.


ZollyMonsta/Mauricio - do you still get those virus reports - upgraded tonight and interested to hear if that has fixed those reports.

Thanks

Mark


The main "WELCOME TO SHACKCHAT" title displays in the default browser font for me which is times new roman :(

the colour scheme is an improvement but the green you have chosen for the background is far to bright and tacky for me.

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