Shaddow Domain Peer Review – Bad Design, Poor Graphics

    June 18, 2003

Well, viewing the site was a little shock at first, but it was not the site’s content. In general, the whole site looks more like a personal webpage than a commercial website. The general design is very bad and the graphics are lacking.

The background image should move with the text on scrolling. People tend to make the text scroll over a static background because they think it looks cool, but in fact, it is distracting. You will not find this effect on serious websites.

Secondly, the background image doesn’t fit the page on higher resolutions, which makes the site look really unprofessional. The skull can be seen a second time in the middle of the page.

The subpages of the site don’t look that bad, but people will rarely visit those cause the main page looks really overloaded. A good idea would have been to put the contact information on a separate subpage, the same goes with all the other things that are down below it. The main page should contain nothing more than a logo, the navigation toolbar and a welcome or greeting text.

The forum, guestbook, ICQ bar and the rest should have their own navbar entry. The navbar itself looks bad, I would recommend using some colored table background to bring structure into it and to highlight the navbar and make it more visible. Right now, it is just another text.

I mention many small things here, but the overall meaning is that the page lacks a general layout. Every page should look about the same and the nav bar should be a static part in all of them, something that can be found whereever you go in the same place. People hate looking for things, cause it wastes time. The site looks too childish, which is bad if you want to have people buy items from you, especially with credit cards. You need to create a “serious” webpage, that can still contain the gothic theme, but in a more structured and ordered way. Chaotic design is bad for e-commerce. People need to trust you to buy from your webpage. Also, create a real good looking logo that represents you. (No flash, no animation!)

On the good side, the page loads really fast and the usage of text instead of graphics is highly recommended, as done here. Keeping graphics to a minimum is a must. Also I liked that it didn’t contain any Flash movies. Flash movies are the worst thing that happened to the internet and webpages in general.

Now, here is my webpage so you can tell me how bad it looks: :)

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