For the website critique assignment, I chose to critique the Fangirl website. Below are the three tasks I choose to try, along with my feedback for each.
Task #1: Learn more about the website and Fangirl Magazine
When I got to the Fangirl homepage the logo was nice is big and I felt like I knew where I was, which was good. But looking at the homepage before the fold, I don’t think I could tell what Fangirl magazine was really about. The navigation bar seemed to be very specific and had thought out categories, which helped me determine the contents of the magazine. As I scrolled down the homepage, I saw articles about video games, films and comics. Then at the bottom, I found a little blurb about the purpose of the site. I liked the blurb and photo, I just wish I would have seen it right at the top, or even have it included in a sidebar. This about blurb really separates this magazine from all the other gamer magazines out there and I think it should be prominent and stand out on the site. I saw the “about us” tab in the navigation, but it is the last item in the navigation. I think I would have seen it sooner if it was one of the first couple of tabs. I also wasn’t sure if the navigation was clickable, since there were no hover effects.
I think a great way to make the purpose of the magazine stand out more is to place it at the top. I think the logo could shrink to make room before the fold on the homepage too. For desktop, you can have the about blurb float to the right before the tweets. While looking for the about blurb, I also noticed that articles seemed to be floating and there was nothing really anchoring them to the page in their proper sections. I think some borders or even more padding/white space and some different fonts might help the content of the homepage feel more connected and in sync with each other. It also might help if you separate the type of content you have better, because at first I couldn’t tell if the about blurb at the bottom was just another article.
Task #2: Find contact information
The first thing I did to find the contact information was scroll to the bottom of the homepage to look in the footer. But there wasn’t really a footer to the site, all I saw was the very light copyright label. I also tried looking under the “about us” tab in the navigation. I didn’t find contact information there either. Lastly, I went back to their twitter feed on the homepage to see if their Twitter account had any more information, but it didn’t really have specific directions for contacting them.
I think a great spot for contact information would be in a footer of the website. It is also a great way to anchor the page too. I think the footer might look nice in their color purple with white font, but you could also use the gray too. I also think it doesn’t hurt to put your contact information in multiple places, like the about page. You could also write a little blurb about directions for contacting and preferred methods of communication.
Task #3: Find an article about a specific game
Something I thought about when browsing the site, was what if I was a Fangirl really interested in reading about a certain video game. I know the site is still in development and that not all the content has been pushed to the site yet. So I couldn’t really pick a certain game to browse for, but I pretended to anyways. When I got to the homepage I immediately clicked under the “video games” section in the navigation. I like how when I got to this page it showed the most recent articles. But something that I think might help people find specific content is to put some links to popular games that people might look for. Same for all the other categories too. If there are opportunities to sort things out by titles and authors, I think that might help organize the content more. I also think adding a search bar may help users have an easier time browsing for specific content too.