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  1. #1
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    I was wondering what people's thoughts were on the idea of a CONTENT site looking too professional, i.e. too slick.

    It would seem to me that an out and out "shopping site" like a mall could only benefit from a slick, professional look. But what about content sites? I would think that the strength of many content sites is that they establish a personal connection with the visitor. Although that's obviously done with the content, i.e. the writing, it seems it might also be done with the home-spun design. Of course you want a clean and easy to navigate site, but if you were to put up a slick, though tasteful design (say from a template), do you think that might take the edge off the personal flavor of the site? Would that make people feel like they were just at another place that only wanted to sell them something?

    I'd be interested in hearing opinions.

  2. #2
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
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    My content sites are a mess. The colors are kooky, the designs stink, but they work. (Navigation however is well thought out and easy to follow.)

    A couple of years back a very successful woman I knew who'd hired professional designers and programmers to make her sites told me I shouldn't put too much spit and shine on my own. She said they conveyed the fact that a real person made them, and not some team of slick corporate types.

    So I took her advice and it seems to be working out okay.

    I think a lot of the decision whether to go with a homemade look vs. a slick look has to do with the type of content and your audience, and what their expectations of sites like yours would be. I'd do a little website intelligence and see what your competitors are up to, and whether that's been a successful approach for them or not.

  3. #3
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    As a surfer, when I encounter a website with a slick 'corporate'feel to it, but the site is clearly not about anything remotly corporate, ..thats a turn-off.

  4. #4
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    i look on content websites for content not design.
    <a href="http://www.freemobilefun.net">Free cell phone wallpapers</a>
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  5. #5
    Affiliate Manager Allen Nance's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Rhea:
    I shouldn't put too much spit and shine on my own. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Ok, no spit and shine, but maybe a little feather dusting once in a while?

  6. #6
    Affiliate Manager Allen Nance's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by simey:
    As a surfer, when I encounter a website with a slick 'corporate'feel to it, but the site is clearly not about anything remotly corporate, ..thats a turn-off. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    That's why we like Webmaster Mikes site. Nothing remotely anything corporate.


  7. #7
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> That's why we like Webmaster Mikes site. Nothing remotely anything corporate.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>



  8. #8
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Hey now my site is as unique as my cardboard condo built under the bridge. Bits and pieces gathered over the years with defects and misfits corrected with duck tape. Hence my angry duck icon.

    I do corporate presence web sites like www.400monroe.com and even spent the last week outlining a site design for beaded jewelry www.crystalare.com for another clients wife. I got the usual client's initial preliminary information... a note pad of site demands, user name/password to the hosting company to access her original one page FLASH site showing 2 product images and contact info. I spend 3 hours at her office studio cleaning her system of parasites and installing a broadband DSL connection.

    The client went on Christmas vacation and hasn't even seen the site design or any content yet. The 3 hour coffee drinking session was enough to start. Would be nice to have her companies logo .gif image and page content for the static pages. Found a few old lame photos of her jewelry but I do not have any current product photos, SKU #s, prices and description to build out the free OScommerce e-catalog that came with her hosting bill for the last 3 years..

    Most clients think I'm a wizard capable of magically discerning everything necessary to make a Mondera type site with even more products then Chris shows in a few days. I even had to wing it on the content showing up there based upon the first busy visit. Now you folks can watch my mastery as I take a site and product line that never got listed in Google and turn it into a ebiz and Corporate presence growth company.

    Need I remind you the entire ecommerce industry is still shaking their heads that the highest converting product web site in the world for 5 years straight is www.suspenders.com. No other product site in the world converts at a steady 1/20 ratio regardless of traffic source or amount of money spent on site design and upkeep.

    Like I've always said since day one at ABW. EcomCity is a test bed site for crash testing certain merchants ability to convert targeted traffic from network generated links. It's not in any way a competitor site to affiliates and not one penny has ever been spent promoting traffic to the site since 1997. No tricks for clicks and the perfect sounding board to justify ranting to merchants here that their tracking is broken or their program can't convert worth a hoot for normal domain bound affiliates not employing tricks.

    Maybe in 2005 I'll re-due EcomCity if the networks clean up their acts and domain bound affiliates again become a factor in their decisions.
    Webmaster's... Mike and Charlie

    "What have you done today to put real value into a referral click...from a shoppers viewpoint!"

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Rhea:
    I think a lot of the decision whether to go with a homemade look vs. a slick look has to do with the type of content and your audience, and what their expectations of sites like yours would be. I'd do a little website intelligence and see what your competitors are up to, and whether that's been a successful approach for them or not. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Have to agree here.

  10. #10
    ABW Ambassador meleemel's Avatar
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    I also agree the home-made look is great, as long as it is not too generic looking. My site is geared towards parents and children, so it has a very easy/simple look.

    Mel

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador JJJay's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by EcomCity.com:
    ...spent the last week outlining a site design for beaded jewelry http://www.crystalare.com for another clients wife. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    Mike you are always bashing the freebie sites but it looks like you can't get enough free clipart I thought I'd stumbled into the archive.org by accident

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by trivum:
    I was wondering what people's thoughts were on the idea of a CONTENT site looking too professional, i.e. too slick. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    After I replied to Rhea, realized I should have addressed this in the original post. Short answer, No.

  13. #13
    Ms Dumb Ass ... but, *NOT* Today! westgroup's Avatar
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    The only thin that drivs me nutz is a site with dozins of miss speld words. Won or two ok, but wuntz I see more I'm gon

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by westgroup:
    The only thin that drivs me nutz is a site with dozins of miss speld words. Won or two ok, but wuntz I see more I'm gon <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    gewd poynt!

  15. #15
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
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    Ummm...just for the record, the spelling and grammar on my sites is excellent. That's one area in which I think you must never, ever be sloppy.

    As for "tone of voice," that varies considerably from one page to another. Sounding too professional can be off-putting to visitors. You don't want to sound like a lawyer or a technical manual (unless of course your site is for lawyers or technical manual writers).

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador Nova's Avatar
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    You should see my wording on my site!

    It will make you stop and read again...
    and read again to try to understand what in the...

    I let the Boss do the writing on our sites, saves him some headaches.

    What COC stand for? Crooks Overwriting Commission
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    Live life to the fullest, You only get 1 chance. Enjoy it while you can... Nothing last forever!

  17. #17
    Outsourced Program Manager Chris -  AMWSO's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Most clients think I'm a wizard capable of magically discerning everything necessary to make a Mondera type site with even more products then Chris shows in a few days. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    No worries so do most of our other web dev clients
    Affiliate Marketing by AMWSO. Skype - chrissanderson ::: TEL 1-720-336-1784 ::: www.amwso.net
    Join our affiliate programs :Vaper Empire, Iolo, Art of Tea, or See ALL our Programs here

  18. #18
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by phillyBurbs.com:
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by trivum:
    I was wondering what people's thoughts were on the idea of a CONTENT site looking too professional, i.e. too slick. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    After I replied to Rhea, realized I should have addressed this in the original post. Short answer, No. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>



    Is that:
    "No," It shouldn't be too slick?
    Or
    "No," you wouldn't have a problem with it being slick?

    Personally I think it depends on the topic, and what atmosphere you're trying to have for the site. Some talk about a site having "hominess." But there's homes--and then there's homes...
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  19. #19
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Leader:
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by phillyBurbs.com:
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by trivum:
    I was wondering what people's thoughts were on the idea of a CONTENT site looking too professional, i.e. too slick. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    After I replied to Rhea, realized I should have addressed this in the original post. Short answer, No. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>



    Is that:
    "No," It shouldn't be too slick?
    Or
    "No," you wouldn't have a problem with it being slick?

    Personally I think it depends on the topic, and what atmosphere you're trying to have for the site. Some talk about a site having "hominess." But there's homes--and then there's _http://www.trumpchicago.com/_ <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Leader:

    No, it is not possible to be too professional. When I say professional, I do not necessarily mean "slick." I'm talking about clean presentation, well-edited copy and smooth navigation. That sort of thing.

  20. #20
    ABW Ambassador darkstar7's Avatar
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    I agree with phillyBurbs. "Slick" usually is not associated with professsional. Being professional means having a look that appeals to your customer base. Whether it is serious looking or humorous looking depends on your customer base and product line.

    Looking too "slick" will cost you sales because who would want to buy from a "slick" site.

    Now having a site with bad navigation, not enough information for a decision, bad graphics will not sell either.
    Luke
    Have you promoted your brand name today?

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