Jump to content

Site Redesigned, And I'd Love To Join The Family!


Recommended Posts

Well, I've been with TCH over a year now but only now have found time to massively redesign my pages. So I'd very much appreciate a link on the TCH Family page, as well as any comments anyone has to make on the look, layout or content of my pages.


Site: http://www.nthuleen.com/


Name: Nancy Thuleen (it's a personal site with subsections)


Description: A resource for German teachers and learners, with dozens (hundreds?) of German-language grammar and vocabulary worksheets, as well as my own essays and articles on German Literature and other topics. Doubles as my personal homepage and has sections for the classes I teach each semester.


TCH link, in text and image, is on the front page.


Rank Evaluation: sure, if anyone has time or energy. I've just moved a bunch of things around, so right now my Page Rank isn't showing on the new URLs, but for many of my older pages, I had a PR of 5 or 6, which surprised me because I've never done any advertising or soliciting of backlinks. (My essay page is listed in DMOZ, which obviously helps. I'm planning on submitting my teaching resources page there, too.)


A question regarding moving things around: because some of my pages (e.g. /essayindex.html) aren't there anymore (it had a PR of 6), I've set up a 301 permanent redirect to point that to the new page (/write.html). I assume Google will eventually catch on and update the page rank? Or do I need to contact all of the sites who link to essayindex.html and get them to update their links? (I'll probably notify a few of the larger sites even if I don't need to.)


Other notes: I do code all my pages by hand (BBEdit on a Mac) and make my own graphics, but I do try to test them on Virtual PC and other machines when I get the chance, but I'd very much appreciate any comments from users with browsers that I don't have (e.g. other than Mac browsers and PC IE6).


I'm also a bit worried about the load times, since the titlebar graphics are a little on the large side. I'm on a cable modem and I don't notice any load time, but I do worry for dial-up users. Should I try to reduce the quality of the titlebar logo to make it smaller?


Thanks in advance, and if I haven't said it before, it's not for lack of thinking it: TCH rocks!

Rock Sign

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You've got a nice layout...great colors, as was mentioned by Lisa. Two things that were odd for me:


1. Your main pages that use the wavy banner...when those pages are viewed with a monitor resolution of 1024x768, they loose alignment because your content area expands and collapses with the browser size while the top graphic stays the same size. I would be tempted to change the table to a fixed size...just my opinion, though!


2. When I clicked onto the german links, I didn't see an easy way to navigate back to the main site. Maybe an obvious link on those pages back to your home page, or you could also have those links open up in new browser windows since they are so different from the rest of your site.


Just my 2 cents! Overall it looks good. Here's a small screenshot of the way the site looked on my monitor at 1024x768.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lisa - thanks so much for the speed optimization link. I'll see what I can do to slim things down a bit, though at least that report is saying it isn't quite as horrible as I thought it might be. :P


Natimage -- you're absolutely right about both comments. The German (101-102-etc) pages are my course homepages designed for my students, and I'm not really sure that I want my students directed right back at my home page. (I have no problem with them viewing it, I just want the course pages to focus on the course material.) There are links (buried in a ways) back to the home site, but maybe I'll move them to the front, I'm not sure.


As far as the expandable tables go, I actually chose them that way -- I thought it would be a waste of space on a large monitor to have a tiny 600-px-width text area. I debated about it for a while (it's actually easier to code the fixed width table and make it blend nicely, the variable width gave me some problems at first), but I went with variable. Do others think I should go back to fixed width? If I do, it just leaves so much white space on the right side (if you're at anything larger than 800x600, which I think most of us are).


Thanks to both of you for the comments! Glad to see there aren't any really awful problems with the site. ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The 301 permanent redirect is exactly the right thing, but you should contact at least the larger sites and have them change it anyway. It's always nice to make it easy for folks, spiders and others. ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Had another idea concerning the links to your classes. Instead of showing the prominent link from the course pages back to your homepage...maybe seperating those links on your homepage would work. That way, someone browsing your site who is not a student wouldn't accidentally get lost. Maybe group them beneath the other site links under a title like "Course links" or "Student Links"...maybe something like that. I guess ultimately it depends on what the goal is with your main site.


Also...with that other comment on the browser side of things, you are absolutely right that most people use 800x600. I personally can't stand it, so I never use it. Everything is just too big! ;) I do understand your point though! If you're really not worried about it....it certainly doesn't hurt anything.


Here is another link that I found interesting to check more than just the speed of your site: summitTOOLS. You don't have to enter a company name, but be sure to check both of the little boxes beneath the url box!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tracy -- that's a very good idea, and I've changed the sidebar links to have Course Pages as a separate header. (They also open in a new window now.) That makes more sense, as you said, but still preserves the links which I want there -- because a lot of my students just enter my domain name when they want to go their class page, so I needed direct links to help them out.


Thanks so much for the suggestion! Thumbs Up

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry it's taken so long to get back to you on this.


Rank Eval:

You're ranked #28 on Google for "german literature" as an example keyphrase. I'm not sure what would be the best for you to focus on but that seemed a good one to check.


You have a lot of keywords in the meta tag. I'd try to limit them to a few keyword phrases - maybe 2-3 - and use other pages on your site to refine your focus. For instance, "german literature" may be good for the homepage but "learn german free" may be best for your course pages.


The javascript would be betten in an external file that you included instead of in the page itself. You can do that like

><script LANGUAGE="javascript" TYPE="text/javascript" SRC="/Scripts/mailto.js"></SCRIPT>

for example.


You have good content in a relatively non-competitive area. With a few adjustments you should be able to get very high rankings for your site.


Best wishes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...