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Thread started 18 Feb 2013 (Monday) 20:40
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Website Critique Please?

 
veritasimg
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Feb 19, 2013 13:19 |  #16

Hi Mr. Broughton!

I like your website. It is simple and straight to the point.
Performance is ok. Not the fastest. The large full images are great and impactful. It draws me into the emotion of the people.... and then SPLAT! A large red motocycle?! Huh?

- You seem to have different good works being showcased in your website leading me to be unsure what are you great at.
- However you do have a wedding site which is great. I think your wedding photos need to be stronger. They don't seem to match your other portfolio image quality.
- Checked out Packages. All it showed was a bunch of words with no Pacakages or Pricing. Unless I miss something, this really tells me either you are super expensive or you do not know how much to charge in hopes that through communication you and the client can settle on a price. It can back fire as at this point people might click to other photographer's site. So check your Google Analytics on page exits.
- I find that footer banner abit annoying. It reminds me of Google Adsense banners.
- Lastly the Blog and Contact me links in your About in the Wedding page --> 404 Page Not Found.

All the best!


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Alveric
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Feb 19, 2013 13:19 |  #17
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Heh, if you lose the church you'd be losing what makes a wedding a wedding. Might as well change the title to 'event and people photography'. As a matter of fact, you have only one or two pictures of the church vs a score of the fun and what not.

I didn't have any issues with the speed*, even though I have 5 mbps, but then again, I have ADSL.

*The only issue with the speed is when you click on the images to see them individually. I noticed this with the free wallpapers (to some of which I helped myself, thanks! :) ), but I assumed it's because they're hi-res images. Patience is a virtue. If I'm too busy or have not a few seconds to wait for good photography (or good anything) then don't bother with me, I'm not one you want as a client: I won't appreciate your work and/or I'll be demanding and wanting you to do things at the snap of my fingers (having worked with clients like these, I know).


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Hikin ­ Mike
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Feb 19, 2013 14:26 |  #18

It didn't seem to load unusually slow to me, but I'm using an old computer, so I expect connections to be slow anyway.

I use the Ken Burns Slideshow on my site, so I obviously like your slideshow as well. One thing I would get rid of is the "BroughtonPhoto.com.au is best viewed in full-screen (press F11 on most PC browsers to toggle full-screen)." line. Who cares.

All and all I like the website.


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kombisaurus
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Feb 19, 2013 17:51 |  #19

Thanks everyone for your comments. I really appreciate them all.

I apologize to those people who suffered slow loading times. It isn't related to your internet speed, but your (and my) location. Living here in Tasmania is kind of the end of the earth (next stop Antarctica). I switched from a US-based web host to a local one (Melbourne-based) and the loading times are now excellent here in Tasmania which is where all my clients are. Unfortunately that degraded the experience for non-Australian visitors. I can apologize, but I'm not going to change it because it's optimized for my clients.

I will do some more testing with the slideshow on slower computers though. It may be that the "ken burns effect" (the slow zoom/pan) is a bit too resource-intensive for older PCs, and I can completely appreciate how jarring and annoying a jerky slideshow can be.

I must admit I was a little puzzled about people recommending I put a contact form there instead of my email address. There *is* a contact form directly below my contact details.
I'm not sure if perhaps it wasn't appearing to some people (veritasimg mentions getting a 404 error), or if it was simply overlooked. Either way it seems like more than one person missed it, so it needs some attention to fix or be made more prominent to visitors.

Great to hear positive feedback about the wallpapers. :)

The missing price lists are a work-in-progress. I have recently relocated across the country and in the process of re-pricing all my services to suit a different economy here. Numerous people noticing no prices just confirms to me how important this is. Thanks.

stillinamerica wrote in post #15627873 (external link)
your Wedding images are no where near the quality of your commerical or portrait work. Your commercial and portrait work are very good.
<snip>
You said you wanted honest critique....here it is. I liked you on FB, I cannot believe you have less than 1oo likes....focus on what you are great at!

Thanks particularly for your comments, they gave me some real food for thought. Some things you mentioned (like the logo) I believe come down to a difference in personal taste, but your post is exactly the type of honest opinion I was hoping for. I agree with you (and Veritasimg) that my commercial work is stronger than my wedding work. The fact that you both pointed this out is an indication that others may feel the same way. However rather than dump the weddings, I think I should use this as motivation to work on improving my skills in my weaker areas. but I do also take your point that I should focus on what I'm good at. I need to balance that with what is going to pay the bills.

Thanks for liking my facebook page. I'm also scratching my head a bit about having less than 100 likes there. I know I should be more proactive about marketing it, but I'm left feeling very underwhelmed at that figure. I'm open to suggestions.

veritasimg wrote in post #15628192 (external link)
<snip>It draws me into the emotion of the people.... and then SPLAT! A large red motocycle?! Huh?
- You seem to have different good works being showcased in your website leading me to be unsure what are you great at.
<snip>
- Lastly the Blog and Contact me links in your About in the Wedding page --> 404 Page Not Found.

I completely agree with you about the "different good works being showcased in your website leading me to be unsure what are you great at" comment. Believe it or not, it used to be a *lot* worse before I cleaned it up extensively.
The problem is, I actually *enjoy* shooting a variety of things. I'd love to not have to specialize in one aspect of photography. I understand that specializing allows me to focus my marketing and most likely generate more income, but the wider the variety the more I'll enjoy it.
I'd love to hear any suggestions about how I can resolve this conflict. Having said that, yeah I think the red bike photo has to go. It doesn't quite fit in there.

It's a shame my blog didn't work for you (it should have). I feel like I'm talking to a brick wall whenever I write anything on my blog. Like my facebook page, my blog doesn't have much of a following. But I also think that in order to *get* a following, it needs a decent chunk of content. It's a chicken and egg thing.

Clearly my next task after tidying up the loose ends on my websites is to market the hell out of them (and my facebook page). I really need to build a client base here in Tasmania, and the best website in the world is no good unless people visit it.

Thanks again everyone who has taken the time to view and comment.


Adrian Broughton
Commercial, Event and Wedding Photographer in Hobart, Tasmania.
BroughtonPhoto.com.au (external link)
BroughtonWeddings.com.​au (external link)
Visit My Blog at Blog.BroughtonPhoto.co​m.au (external link)

  
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stillinamerica
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Feb 19, 2013 23:41 as a reply to  @ kombisaurus's post |  #20

Regarding FB, its tricky now, I have had my page for three years, back when people had to 'like' your page to comment or anything....thats all changed unfortunately.

The best way to get you page seen is by tagging people in your pictures....but still that doesnt mean you will grow....its just one of those things. However...FB will let you pay them and you will grow that way.

I agree about the logo, prob is just personal taste....its not the end of the world.

Good attitude about the Weddings....I know you said you have another website just for weddings in the works (What I said 2 years ago :) )and that is good.

Good luck to you, I look forward to seeing more of your work.

Cheers


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Hedley
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Feb 20, 2013 06:01 |  #21

NewCreation wrote in post #15627525 (external link)
In addition to comments about speed, I'd also suggest a contact form instead of listing your email address.

This is an interesting debate. A lot of recent research has shown that contact forms seem to be losing favour - especially amongst web standards aficionados. An email link allows web users to send the email from their own mail client which means they can see in their sent items etc if it was successful and read threads etc.
Contact forms don't give that assurance that the mail has gone and usually the user has no record of it, leading to them feeling impersonal.

Just what I've read recently in web development forums, but I know people like them here. Thoughts?


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Duecut
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Feb 20, 2013 06:19 |  #22

The Home page gives me an error "Your Browser does not support canvas" on internet explorer 8, its not my personal computer.

But as 23% (reference (external link)) of users still use IE8 are you ok with losing the interest of those users.


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RDKirk
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Feb 20, 2013 06:22 |  #23

Hedley wrote in post #15630952 (external link)
This is an interesting debate. A lot of recent research has shown that contact forms seem to be losing favour - especially amongst web standards aficionados. An email link allows web users to send the email from their own mail client which means they can see in their sent items etc if it was successful and read threads etc.
Contact forms don't give that assurance that the mail has gone and usually the user has no record of it, leading to them feeling impersonal.

Just what I've read recently in web development forums, but I know people like them here. Thoughts?

Contact forms are not losing to email, they're losing (where they may be losing) to social media links. A lot of people will prefer to message you back through their favorite social media.

But people who won't use a contact form are unlikely to go through the greater trouble of composing an email.

Contact forms can certainly be set up to send response email to verify that it's been properly sent and received, and even to return a copy to the prospective client.


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kombisaurus
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Feb 20, 2013 06:29 |  #24

Duecut wrote in post #15630976 (external link)
The Home page gives me an error "Your Browser does not support canvas" on internet explorer 8, its not my personal computer.

Thanks for the heads up. I'll look into that. :)


Adrian Broughton
Commercial, Event and Wedding Photographer in Hobart, Tasmania.
BroughtonPhoto.com.au (external link)
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NewCreation
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Feb 20, 2013 08:48 |  #25

RDKirk wrote in post #15630988 (external link)
Contact forms are not losing to email, they're losing (where they may be losing) to social media links. A lot of people will prefer to message you back through their favorite social media.

But people who won't use a contact form are unlikely to go through the greater trouble of composing an email.

Contact forms can certainly be set up to send response email to verify that it's been properly sent and received, and even to return a copy to the prospective client.

This and I suppose you could give different options and let the client choose. Are not bots still crawling for the "@" to find email addresses to harvest? Maybe I'm out of date...could easily be. :)


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veritasimg
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Feb 20, 2013 10:28 as a reply to  @ NewCreation's post |  #26

Tasmania?! Does anyone even live there?! I always thought it's a tourist rock for those looking for the Tasmanian Devil and race around the place in the Targa. :)

You can certainly shoot a myriad of genre. No problem there. Just spin off separate brands/web presence.

Don't sweat the FB Likes #s.Seriously. it's better to grow a genuine community of followers than trying to have all sorts of campaigns to gain Likes. Which btw, can stray into the No-No zone with Facebook. You can always "buy" Likes via FB ads. Apparently there are a ton of bots that will click Likes.

Not sure how large a population is in Tasmania, I have a feeling the community is pretty compact and tight. So best to begin with connecting organically to get the word out.


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dr1ft
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Feb 20, 2013 14:26 |  #27

I am surprised but the website actually works on my Android phone. The menu is tiny and unusable, but the full screen slide-show looks great on my 5" Galaxy Note 2.


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