SITE REVIEW: Publisher Database

  • aboyd
  • Beginner
  • Beginner
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  • Posts: 43
  • Loc: USA

Post 3+ Months Ago

Here is my new Web site, a submission tracker (for writers & artists, mostly):

http://www.publisherdatabase.com/

The Web site launched on March 31st. I've had about 100 visitors, but nobody has signed up (well, my original beta testers are signed up, so I have 11 members, but nobody new). So I guess my review question is: why no signups? What do you think?

BTW, my 3-year-old son insists I add this icon: :evil:
  • Anonymous
  • Bot
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  • Posts: ?
  • Loc: Ozzuland
  • Status: Online

Post 3+ Months Ago

  • daremedy
  • Professor
  • Professor
  • daremedy
  • Posts: 911

Post 3+ Months Ago

Very nice colors, soft and comfortable, great first impression. The google ad is placed nicely and blends well with the site, so its not distracting. Now to the menu. Right now I only see Home. I'm going to play devil's advocate for a sec (even though I know how you're using that menu bar). If I just visited your site and saw Home in the menu bar, I'd figure you only have 1 section on your site, Home. Ordinarily you'd expect ALL of the available sections of your site to be in that navigation menu, so in your case I'd want to see Home, My Account, Forums etc etc... I realize that you have a menu below and also realize that as I go deeper into your site that you use that menu bar as a navigation tool to tell me where I am. But you need to have 1 static menu at the top so that as soon as users come on to your site, they know what you have to offer. Keep the navigation thing you have, except maybe move it down underneath the menu bar. Hopefully you get what I mean.

The rest of your site looks pretty good. One aspect I think you should change is the inactive links you have in your menu below. I'm guessing that once a user is logged in, those links become active. Again, devils advocate, if I just came onto your site and saw that I'd imagine those sections werent complete because they had to link to them. In fact, I actually did think that for a second until I pieced it together. One idea on fixing that is maybe having those links be made active, and if a user is logged in, great, they see what they're supposed to. If they're not logged in, then it redirects them to the login/register screen. I'm not sure if you're using cookies or sessions for authentication, but that would probably be the best idea for your navigation.

The forum is tad off-center. Looks a bit funny, you may want to fix that up. I'm impressed with your navigation though, not many people include a link to go back Home from their Forum section. The forum topics look good as well.

Generally speaking, you have a solid website. It may take a little time for you to get noticed, so dont worry about the lack of sign ups quite yet. At least rest assured that whatever visitors you do attract will be treated to a rather well strucutred site, something that will keep them coming for more. Maybe look into the SEO forums here to gather some ideas as to how to improve your sites search engine rankings/friendliness. But its definitely a nice effort and give it time, this site should do really well.
  • Byzantium
  • Student
  • Student
  • Byzantium
  • Posts: 86
  • Loc: London

Post 3+ Months Ago

First impressions good. Nice clean, uncluttered layout in relaxing tones. I went through the process of registering - to find out more. Registration process works fine - but then it's phpbb - so expect it to be.

At the outset I was not 100% clear on what the site was for, wether I would be able to post an article or other piece of writing on-line, but realised soon that intent is to enable me (as a writer) to track work I submit. I'm not actually a writer, but if I was, then that information would be very valuable to me so I would almost certainly want to have a local backup of that info - or at least a printed report. I would not want your site to be the sole holder of information that is critical to me managing my business as a writer.

The site is an interesting idea and it could be a great success - or a complete failure - it's all down to wether people use it and if you can get enough people using it to build up that critical mass that makes it a useful resource for both sides (writer and publisher). I imagine that you must be a writer of some sort yourself (in order to have seen a need for something like this). If so I would say your best approach to publicising it is to mail all the people you know and get them to mail all the people they know... It needs to be picked up by people 'in the business' - I doubt if Search Engine Optimisation as such is likely to be much benfit to you.

Are there existing sites for matching publisher and writer? The nearest thing I can think of (as a sometime would be songwriter) is songlink
(http://www.songlink.com/)

The most interesting part - the database of magazines and other publishers looking for work - is only available for paid members - and this might put people off (since you have not proved to the visitor your ability to provide good leads) - so maybe some kind of 'sign up and get two free leads' - or something like that might help you get the critical mass you need to get started.

But then at the opposite extreme, you probably need to guard against being accused of inundating the publishers with junk - by making their leads known to anyone, including those who think they can write, but can't.

Perhaps I should have been concentrating on the technical / code side of reviewing the site - but you seem to have that pretty much sussed.

Good luck with the site!
  • daremedy
  • Professor
  • Professor
  • daremedy
  • Posts: 911

Post 3+ Months Ago

Byzantium, just wanted to give you kudos on your review. Nice to see new members give good insight. Welcome aboard!
  • aboyd
  • Beginner
  • Beginner
  • User avatar
  • Posts: 43
  • Loc: USA

Post 3+ Months Ago

I want to thank you both for the reviews. They have been extremely helpful. I have already changed the navigation menus, and removed the login box (it has its own page now). I haven't fixed everything yet, but I'm taking baby steps. :)

Thanks again.
  • 01wojtowicz
  • Newbie
  • Newbie
  • 01wojtowicz
  • Posts: 8

Post 3+ Months Ago

i think the layout is simple but very good
you could add pictures though

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