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New web site ideas
#1
So I'm starting to work out a new web site. I'm just using the IV as a prototyping tool to work out the layout and such. Before I go too far, I'd like to get some feedback. Bear in mind that the images can be improved over time. I can't spend two weeks right now working on this. So the issue is, is this basically a good direction in general? It's more of the 'one long page' type that so many folks are using, though it's not complete. There will be some more sections below this. But they take a while to work out so I was just looking to get some feedback before going on.

Since it's a tall image, the browser may size it down. View it separately for the full size deal if necessary.

[Image: 5_0WebSiteDemo1.png]
Dean Roddey
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#2
I like it. I would get rid of the black vertical bars on the right and left.
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#3
That's not part of the content actually. It's just the IV's background color. In reality I'd have the HTML body container size to fit and provide some sort of appropriately colored border when the window is bigger than the content, probably some light gray or something.
Dean Roddey
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#4
Sorry - but I am going to rain on the parade again.

If this is the first page of the new web site, then I find it totally confusing. Most of the text is the same size and there is far too much of it. Do I click on the titles at the top right or the rows of products along the middle and bottom? The key selling points "Makes your life simpler" etc, just don't stand out from all the background clutter.

At random, I searched under Home Automation to see what the competition is doing. First up was this site

http://itsanautomatedlife.com/

Its a world away. Still a single first page - scrolling, but with clear layout and all the important messages. Almost as many images as words. OK they probably have a greater marketing budget than you have income, but it still uses a design tool - WordPress - to put the site together. There are plenty of others, Weeby etc. that allow you to rapidly prototype a design rather than coding it yourself. These tools also enforce style rules, fonts, colors etc. that create a more professional looking product.

The current site is great for techies. If that's the audience, you might just as well leave it as it is. But if you are trying to reach a wider audience, then you have got to make it more appealing and simple.

Anyway that's my view - now to get shot down in flames.

PJG
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#5
It looks good. I like it better than the current one.

But that site referenced above is something you should consider, using a CMS, i.e Wordpress, etc. Although I am not a fan of the "everscrolling" single web page. A CMS supposedly makes it easier to manage a web site and just focus on the content and also helps with it displaying consistently across multiple platforms like tablets, etc. That is why all those web sites look the same a lot of them use the same CMS platform and templates.
Wuench
My Home Theater/Automation Website

[THREAD=5957]BlueGlass CQC Config[/THREAD]
[THREAD=10624]Wuench's CQC Drivers[/THREAD]
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#6
It's actually already sort of in the general vein of a competitor's site. The site above is sort of a different thing. They are integrators. They can say different sorts of things, because they are in a position to make all they things they say happen. We are really more selling potential, so it's got to sort of appeal to the folks who would be able to make that happen, with is either integrators or more technical DIYers.

If we had a hundred integrators out there, I think we could do a lifestylish type web site, and just show it doing all these things. Then just say, if all of this appeals to you, contact one of these companies and they will make it happen. But we really aren't in that position, so it's sort of bait and switch to go too far that way and then they find out that they really don't have a way to make any of that happen, unless they do it themselves and most won't.

To me, that's why it seems that it's best, though going more 'showbiz' than the current site, to keep it mstly targeting for now those folks would would appreciate the slightly more technical details, in particular integrators.
Dean Roddey
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#7
How soon are you planning on doing this? Reason I ask is that in at least one video, the driver video, you reference the current website so for consistency sake any videos you do that reference the website in the video will likely have to at least partially be re-done. Something to consider...
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#8
Would be nice to have have the "Drivers" documentation closer to home screen so it is faster to access. Maybe combine under documentation? not sure why it looks like you go to an external site for driver documentation.
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iPads,Tivo,Hikvision,Elk-M1,TED5000,Somfy RTS blinds+ZRTSI, Amazon Echos+Dots, Polk XRT12,
Honeywell Wi-Fi 9000, Caleo Wi-Fi Thermostats, Rainmachine
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#9
Ultimately the drivers will be incorporated into the new 5.x documentation, so it'll be easily accessible via the admin interface. There just isn't going to be time to do it for the initially release.
Dean Roddey
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#10
Dean - Looks much better and more current that the existing site. Be sure to keep it clear and concise. Define the Market that you are after prior to going much further along. The front eye candy pages could be for the general populace and the background tech pages for the techies. Stay consistent and design it so that the background images can be changed frequently to keep it fresh or even seasonal. Make sure to add the ability to splash special offers on the main front page without digging into the site.

Just my 2 cents.
Thanks,
Dave Bruner
Cool
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