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Thread: Seeking Website Improvement Feedback - $110+ Prize (Cash & Jewelry)

  1. #1
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Question Seeking Website Improvement Feedback - $110+ Prize (Cash & Jewelry)
    Friends,

    Another one of my clients is looking for website improvement feedback, and this time it is AmberDesire.com.

    The past 30-days conversion for this affiliate program is at 1.46%, and we believe there is a lot of room for improvement. Please help us make this merchant convert better, and win some jewelry+cash along the way!

    PRIZE: There will be a draw to award the main prize of 50.00 cash prize + a jewelry set, consisting of these Spherical Amber Earrings and this Sphere of Cognac Amber Pendant (total jewelry value: $60.20).

    To enter the draw, just post your constructive feedback in this thread.

    Thank you in advance for your participation in improving yet another merchant's website.

    Geno

  2. #2
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    the checkout process seens confusing. I also got a security warning when I went back to the home page.

    The menu could use some vamping up

  3. #3
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
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    Geno,

    Start by changing the scary lady on the front page (looks like she's trying to hypnotize me into buying ) - and maybe have a model showing her neckline with some AMBER jewelry. The model now appears to be wearing ruby colored jewelry.

    After refreshing the home page a few times, I see that the model images do change.

    http://www.amberdesire.com/skins/ski...urlitz_06b.jpg - the focus is not on the jewelry

    http://www.amberdesire.com/skins/ski...urlitz_06a.jpg - a little better - but should be less model (less face) and more jewelry. Even though this one is NOT scary

    http://www.amberdesire.com/skins/ski...ont/lola01.jpg - The model's eyes win - is she wearing jewelry?

    http://www.amberdesire.com/skins/ski...nt/orchid3.jpg - Flowers distract, don't match or contrast the jewelry - again, should just be the neckline with the necklace.

    http://www.amberdesire.com/skins/ski...ont/lola03.jpg - too much model again - can't see the earrings, necklace is sideways, bracelet lost.

    http://www.amberdesire.com/skins/ski...ont/lola02.jpg - very busy - doesn't scream "amber jewelry".

    The jewelry on the front page doesn't stand out, images could be of better quality - higher resolution (or my bifocals need cleaning again).

    I think the images in the header are nice and bright - the rest of the images should follow suit.

    Throughout the site I would have the "click on the image to magnify it", on each image. When I clicked on Hot Deals

    http://www.amberdesire.com/s-20-hot-deals.aspx

    I had to click on the image, hoping it would enlarge to a size I could enjoy.

    http://www.amberdesire.com/p-95-rain...-necklace.aspx

    But, had to click one more time... at least one too many clix for a visitor.

    Site should also be full width - use all of the visitor's monitor width.

    Also, consider going with an all white page - it really does wonders for the header.

    That's all I have at the moment.

    ~ Denis

  4. #4
    Newbie KirstenM's Avatar
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    Your featured product copy could use a little polish & kick, IMO. Doesn't seem on some of the copy that you're excited about the jewelry or really trying to sell it.

    I played around w/ the first description that I saw when I clicked through. So instead of

    "This resembling a cluster of wine grapes 1 ˝ inch drop pendant with cherry and green amber will surely please its new owner. To consider that this amber has a long history and symbolism as found in ancient mythology makes the individual who wears such a creation the topic of conversation and admiration. Consider if you will the potential for an increase in desirability and value for such important jewelry. Can be matched with earrings and bracelet."

    Try

    "When we first saw this 1 ˝ inch drop pendant, we couldn’t take our eyes off it. A cluster of wine grapes, this pendant captures the ancient symbolism of the harvest, evoking celebration, camaraderie, and prosperity. Grapes of Amber features cherry amber for the fruit and green amber for the leaves, both set in xxxx silver--a stunning combination that makes the pendant a wonderful conversation piece as well as an elegant addition to any fine jewelry collection. Grapes of Amber will be sure to please, whether you buy it for yourself or as a gift for someone special—and don’t forget to also consider our matching earrings and bracelet."

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador Georgie Peri's Avatar
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    Greetings

    This is something that will help with indexing, but maybe not what your lookin for ...:\

    When you are going to the sections that list the products, the Title, Description, Keywords are all the same when you switch around the settings IE going to page 2, or to High to low etc ...

    Get the webmaster to put something in like this ..
    Code:
    <%
    dim cat
    cat = Request.QueryString()
    
    cat = Replace(cat,"EntityName","Name") 
    cat = Replace(cat,"categoryprice1","Low to High") 
    cat = Replace(cat,"categoryprice2","High to Low") 
    
    cat = Replace(cat,"sortcriteria=","Sort By ") 
    cat = Replace(cat,"pagenum=","Page # ")
    cat = Replace(cat,"&"," ")
    %>
    and then add it to the Title / Description / Keywords area .. so if this was to be index on google .. it wouldnt come up as duplicate error.

    Thanks for viewing!

  6. #6
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    The site is amber desire, shouldn't there just be more of a focus on amber jewelry?

  7. #7
    Full Member kayecee's Avatar
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    If I'm the customer, that shopping experience had better be all about ME in order to convert the sale...

    A lot less model and more jewelry please... I'm a frumpy housewife... I want to imagine the jewelry on me, not some hot chick my hubby wants to boink.... I want to imagine the reaction of my friends when they see that fabulous necklace around MY neck... It's ok to use a model, but the focus needs to be more on the jewelry and not the smoking hot babe....

    I'm not crazy about Blue Nile's sidebars, but take a look at how they feature their jewelry.... nice big pics.... nice white background.... if their silver banded diamonds look that nice against white, just think about how nice the amber jewelry would pop out.... plus, I detest white text on a dark background.... I can't read stuff like this without my brain shifting gears..... http://www.amberdesire.com/t-about_us.aspx

    Jewelry needs to feel rich and decadent.... when I see white text on dark, all I can think of is cheap entertainment like a video game or movie site...

    I'm squinting at the small pics on pages like this: http://www.amberdesire.com/s-13-necklaces.aspx

    Valentine's Day is fast approaching.... perfect time for gift suggestions for different price ranges... I don't feel like buying something for Valentine's Day when I look at the front page right now.... I'm getting summertime/escape to exotic places type feelings.... I feel more like booking a cruise than buying a bracelet....

    Offer a newsletter....

    How about a few customer testimonials?

    Are all the links on this page link exchanges? http://www.amberdesire.com/t-links.aspx

    Uhm... ancient history? Nice for spiders, but think of the humans too.... if I am shopping at your site, I probably don't care what ancient hunters wore.... that info would be great for an educational site, but if you get traffic to those pages, my guess is that it will be mostly students writing a report for school... you've got some good information about amber, but it kind of gets lost in things like "Amber In Medicine" and "Amber And Magic" types of things.. you want info that will put a shopper in a buying state of mind placed front and center.... you want people to shop, not write a term paper.... I'd minimize the attention to those historical types of articles by taking them out of the header nav and adding a History Lessons link in the footer or something....

    Give me articles that benefit me.... my needs.... my wants... my desires.... leave the basic tutorials about what amber is and a brief history of amber in the header nav, but give me more articles that will make me want to buy....

    How about: How To Choose The Style That's Right For You..... Care For Amber Jewelry.... things like that....

    http://www.amberdesire.com/c-36-silver-jewelry.aspx Pages like this one need all that text broken up with pictures.... use a picture of silver earrings with a text link to the silver earring section underneath, for example....

    On the about page, this line scares the bejeebers out of me: We usually trade with family owned and operated businesses that follow guidelines put forth by the International Amber Association meeting their strict quality standards.

    Uhm.... so does that mean that I'm taking a gamble when ordering from your company? I "know" that's not what you mean and I "know" you sell nice jewelry, but from a customer's standpoint, I read that thinking, "What do they mean USUALLY? They USUALLY trade with businesses that deal with quality pieces, but they'll occasionally slip some trash in?"

    Remember, your customers may be coming off an internet search or banner to your site.... they may not know your company from a hole in the wall.... it's up to you to convince them to pull that credit card out and trust you.... I'd really consider rephrasing that sentence somehow....

    I DO like your payment methods being displayed at the bottom.... if all I have is PayPal, I hate clicking a million pages trying to figure out what payment methods are accepted by a site.... please keep that.....

    I like all the choices that the search engine gives me.... it would be nice if it would display a picture of the products in the search returns instead of a bunch of text links though.....

    It would also be nice to have pictures in my shopping cart so I can remember what it is I'm thinking of purchasing....

  8. #8
    Believe knight01's Avatar
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    The amber cufflinks category is empty. Hide it. A couple categories only had 1 or 2 pieces, while you can't hide them perhaps add a 'related categories' or 'related products' to them so they don't look so bare.

    The header. Well, it's quite a header graphic. Maybe a little overbearing. Make it smaller so more of the product is visible above the fold. Maybe the ring(?) image in the graphic could be a little smaller.

    The 'curly' graphic on the background is distracting to me. Don't distract from the product. That is what you want people noticing.

    I would also agree, while I like the models, the images need to focus more on the jewelry. Perhaps some creative image cropping or masking so you still see what the item looks like being worn without the focus being on the models faces.
    Someday starts today
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  9. #9
    Full Member kayecee's Avatar
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    Now for the likes:

    I like the featured product... (would be even nicer if it had a discount or free shipping)

    I like the fact that I can tell with a glance that you offer worldwide shipping....

    I like the display of payment methods....

    I like the several options in the search.... (even though I'd like to see it return pictures)

    I like the banner in the header.... (maybe not so tall though)

    I like the drop down bar in the top navigation....

    I like that I don't have to go searching or leave the page for the shipping information when I'm looking at a product....

    I like the "email to a friend" with the product because I occasionally do that.... sometimes if I'm shopping, I'll even mail it to myself so I can remember which products on which sites I was looking at when I get paid the next week....

    I like the fact that you have a wish list... good for Christmas and such....

    And YIKES! NOW I see the itty bitty newsletter sign up.... *ahem* And I looked for it before... *hint* *hint*

    BTW what is that in the lower left corner? Pin?

  10. #10
    Full Member kayecee's Avatar
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    Julian.... bejeebers?

  11. #11
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    Thank you so much for your great and constructive comments. Thank you for pointing out the “too much model” on the front page issue, we will definitely change that and expose more jewelry on the front page.

    Julian, thank you for your opinion on checkout process. We plan to do store upgrade within few months and introduce one page checkout which should make the checkout process easier and more straightforward.

    Covergence, KirstenM, kayecee I promise to change or eliminate model and work on better presentation of jewelry. Also background color will be changed to white.
    Magi, thank you for your suggestion regarding indexing, I have already sent it to our webmaster.
    knight01, you are right, empty category should be hidden until we have new products (should be within 2 weeks).

    Some of changes will take time to introduce but we will work on that. I am very grateful for your suggestions and hope to hear more.

    Thank you,

    Aleksandra
    AmberDesire.com

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador purplebear's Avatar
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    Boy, you guys did a great job with the feedback. Don't wanna be in the contest cos only have a few comments and don't think that would be fair cos you guys have really put a lotta effort into yours.

    Definitely agree about the models. lol Really am not a flash lover lol but in some cases I think it is nice. If you had instead of where the models were, some sorta flash that moved very slowly that just showcased some of your favorite jewelry that might look very nice.

    I'd get rid of the black lettering at the top and focus your colors more on softer colors, the yellows, oranges, beiges and the white. The black just to me seems to be at odds with jewelry but that may just be entirely my own thinking. lol

    You might try to also separate a teeny bit your type of amber colors listed on the left instead of just being listed below the types of jewelry so they're easier to spot. There definitely are customers that only are looking for a particular type of amber.

    Have to disagree a little with kaycee. I think your "About amber" is just fine. There will be people looking for umm some of the boring information that a shopper may not find too interesting but those other people want to learn about that information. So, your providing them with that knowledge is a good thing. They may only wanna know all the technical stuff but at some point may wanna purchase something and they'll remember who it was that knew sooooo much about the amber and will probably visit your site cos of that. Very good for the search engines, too. It's good for your site to be thought of as an authority type site. If you really know your products I would think that is a vote of confidence in you.

    On a bit of a personal note - Thank you Aleksandra for seeking out the feedback from your affiliates and taking your affiliate program seriously by wanting to improve things. I think your products are very pretty and the couple of times I've corresponded with you, you've been very nice. Best wishes to you and your site

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador VampireSkunk's Avatar
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    I deliberately didn't read any other suggestions, and I guess most of mine are already covered, but here goes:

    1) Maybe have the Women's Blog open in a new window - people may click out of curiosity, have a quick look round, then close the window, expecting the main site to still be open in the background.

    2) Maybe make the picture of Lolita Burlitz (however beautiful!) a bit smaller on the home page. It's valuable real estate and should maybe be used to display more jewelry.

    3) Clicking 'Home' at the top left after navigating around the site threw up the standard security information warning: "This page contains both secure and nonsecure items. Do you want to display the nonsecure items?"

    Presumably the images are non-secure. Could be a big stumbling block for customers.

  14. #14
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aleksandra
    Thank you so much for your great and constructive comments. Thank you for pointing out the “too much model” on the front page issue, we will definitely change that and expose more jewelry on the front page.

    Julian, thank you for your opinion on checkout process. We plan to do store upgrade within few months and introduce one page checkout which should make the checkout process easier and more straightforward.

    Covergence, KirstenM, kayecee I promise to change or eliminate model and work on better presentation of jewelry. Also background color will be changed to white.
    Magi, thank you for your suggestion regarding indexing, I have already sent it to our webmaster.
    knight01, you are right, empty category should be hidden until we have new products (should be within 2 weeks).

    Some of changes will take time to introduce but we will work on that. I am very grateful for your suggestions and hope to hear more.

    Thank you,

    Aleksandra
    AmberDesire.com

    Aleksandra,

    You're welcome - glad to assist and be a part of your program.

    ~ Denis

  15. #15
    Affiliate Manager cbsturg's Avatar
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    Hey Geno, forgive my frankness...

    Obviously the problem with this site is the design. Working on a Mac in FF and I get quite a few CSS display problems. While the majority of users are running IE (for some unknown reason), there is little excuse for not creating a site that renders properly in all the major browsers.

    Personally, I despise all the links on the left-hand side. I don't know if it's the implementation, or just the gross amount of information that's taking up gallery space, but I would redo that. While I think the logo was pretty well designed, the main logo is of poor resolution and looks fuzzy to me. "Beauty in every piece" is too large (as is the overall header), and as mentioned elsewhere, the grey background in the content section has got to go.

    With the main nav, the black on orange (amber?) needs to be reconsidered. The general color scheme is reminding me too much of a place I would buy a Halloween costume from. I would want to see a variety of options, but it would seem that using the amber as a highlight color (so the jewelry still pops out) would be a better approach. Use more light colors, even in the nav bar, and use your deeper colors as accent points to draw attention to the product.

    On listing pages such as http://www.amberdesire.com/c-3-amber-earrings.aspx, I would suggest perhaps linking the images to facebox style modal pop (similar to what happens when you expand the image), but within that pop give additional product information along with a buy now option. I think gap.com does something similar to this.

    In summary, I don't think there is just one problem with the site. I would encourage the owner to consider completely redoing the design. If I'm online to buy jewelry, I want to make sure that I'm not buying cheap crap. Cheap jewelry has its place, but I don't think that's the market Amber is trying to reach. The overall design of the site leaves questions as to how serious a merchant Amber is. The jewelry looks classy, but the site does not. It's too boxy and the colors are too overstated. Throw that in with some of the comments made elsewhere, coupled with display issues in FF, and I would probably walk away and buy elsewhere.

    Again old friend, that's not meant to be too personal. Just my two cents.
    Chris Sturgill
    "All my life I've had one dream, to achieve my many goals." - H. Simpson

  16. #16
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
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    Kayecee wrote: "A lot less model and more jewelry please... I'm a frumpy housewife... I want to imagine the jewelry on me, not some hot chick my hubby wants to boink...."

    LOL K! Uh-oh, sounds like someone needs to buy his wife some of that jewelry!


    The feedback that has been offered here thus far is tremendous / well thought out. Great job gang. The full screen width suggestion is good for jewelry sites. I also agree with less about the model and more about the jewelry and white background. As an added suggestion, provided they get good traffic volume, they can always place a link to my jewelry site too.
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  17. #17
    Affiliate Manager Howard Gottlieb's Avatar
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    Good suggestions so far.

    Here's a couple more:

    1. To me the white background on the product images set against the dark background gives the site a amateurish look and feel.

    2. The header needs to be much cleaner. The graphic even appears out of focus.

    3. The homepage is way over dominated by the model instead of the best selling jewelry

    4. All of the calls to action should stand out more. Choose better colors and placement.

    Merchants, I believe, should design every page on their site as squeeze pages. Stand back and see if people know ideally what you would like them to do in a clear, easy to understand way.

    Hope that helps.

    H
    I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die
    to find out there isn't, than live my life as if there
    isn't and die to find out there is.

  18. #18
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    This thread has turning into an amazing tool for the AmberDesire.com's webmaster. He has already started working on thing, and I want to thank you all for providing such a great amount of feedback already. Keep it coming, folks!

    Quote Originally Posted by cbsturg
    Hey Geno, forgive my frankness...

    Again old friend, that's not meant to be too personal. Just my two cents.
    "Personal"? Chris, I know your intentions are good. That's all that matters. I appreciate your feedback, man, and I hope my client will be able to use it.

    Geno

  19. #19
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    A major website redesign is already underway, thanks to your invaluable feedback, folks. AD is doing this to avoid the effect of a "patched cloth".

    Should anyone care to contribute any more feedback, the thread is still open.

    Geno

  20. #20
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    Geno, I saw it the same way Chris did, the colors look industrial like where I'd go to buy sandpaper. The model is taking up too much space for the value. Logo needs better definition so that it is memorable. CSS problems need to be addressed and a white background for the products and content. I didn't care for the menu icons and think that the main page should not have links to every subsection, draw the shopper to their main interest and then offer more choices. The products look like good quality, they need a quality setting. I personally think that too many sites put up too prominent a link to their affiliates page. Affiliates will find it if it's on your site, but some shoppers see the "affiliate" link and think that means they are being charged higher prices.
    I need to take a closer look at the program if the site issues are handled.

  21. #21
    Full Member kayecee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Hamilton
    Kayecee wrote: "A lot less model and more jewelry please... I'm a frumpy housewife... I want to imagine the jewelry on me, not some hot chick my hubby wants to boink...."

    LOL K! Uh-oh, sounds like someone needs to buy his wife some of that jewelry!
    Heh... heh.... oh, don't worry... Kayecee owns some very nice jewelry.....

  22. #22
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    Again, thank you ALL very much for the feedback. It is real 'eye opener' for us.

    2busy has actually summerized what has to be done to improve Amberdesire.com and this is what we are going to do. As Geno mentioned, work has already bagun. It is going to be major redesign according to your tips and comments.

    Thanks again
    Aleksandra

  23. #23
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    Thanks again everyone for great feedback.

    If you have any additional comments please post by midnight Tuesday / January 20th. After this thread is closed the winner will be announced


    Thank you,
    Aleksandra

  24. #24
    AM Navigator Geno Prussakov's Avatar
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    Closing thread. Will announce the winner on Wednesday morning (21 January).

    Thank you very much again for your input, everyone!

    Geno

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