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Spiritualism, Transformation, Enlightenment

Sat, Jan 7, 2006

Personal & Hobbies | Author:

www.michaelascherr.com

Introduction

This is a personal website of Michaela Scherr, a personal transformation coach. Her goal is to help others to achieve inner peace in their lives. The author is a great writer and has alot of cool content to share.

Form

Initially, I was really confused of what the website was trying to say. To be truthful, it took me quite a while to figure out what was going on. My observation is that there are 3 forces competing for attention in the site. The author wrote alot of content, trying to tell the reader what “transformation” is all about. There are also 3rd party advertisements and Pay-Per-Click Ads, meaning that the author is into online advertising and business. Lastly, the author is also trying to promote her own e-book and services. The author needs to rethink what she wants to achieve with the website and concentrate on building a theme.

The colors, fonts, graphics and layout need to gel together to express a common idea. At the moment, things are flying all over the place and I do not experience any peace at all!. If I am the website designer, I might probably work on 2 concepts, “spiritual growth” and “inner peace”. Light colors are probably the way to go. Simple layout with lesser text and alot of space might work better than the current system. If the site is about selling the author’s services, it needs to be more convincing. Perhaps more images of the author conducting classes or pics of the author might be a good idea.

I believe any layout can be effective if information is well organized. There are too many empty spaces at the moment and it makes the website looks awkard. One example is the newsletter page where the reader just keep scrolling without anything to read. Most of the graphics used in the site are clip arts. Clip arts convey a message of “playfulness” and when used in web design, gives people an impression that the website is not serious in what it is trying to say.

There are tonnes of advertisements all over the place. The adsense advertisement on top of many webpages gives people an impression that the site is more interested in marketing rather than have something serious to sell. Promoting adsense too strongly can kill a website. People today are intelligent and they see adsense everyday. Everybody wants to earn extra advertising income but the question is how can we make people click on the ads comfortably…To do that, we must first make people feel comfortable with our site.

Function

I think the top banner is taking up too much space, considering the amount of information it is conveying to the reader. The top menu is consistent but the left menu is confusing. It will be a big bonus if the left menu has lesser items so that the reader need not scroll so much. The author might also consider using shorter texts with coloured background for each in the menus. Menus in a website should only contain important links to different sections of the site.

There are signs that the site is trying to be optimized for search engines. The problem is that the opitimization work is done at the expense of the user experience. I am not so worried about the codes at the moment because I believe there are much more important things to be done. I would fix up the aesthetics and user experience issue before looking at the code. Frontpage can produce crappy codes but I believe it can be a good tool for people without programming experience. Frontpage can also produce nice websites and it is just about understanding the software better.

Conclusion

I am a personally fan of philosophy and spiritualism and I believe that michaelascherr.com has a great content to sell. The website needs to undergo a great revamp to communicate more effectively to the end-user. The author has to rethink in what she wants to achieve with the site and set her priority. For example, if she wants good search engine traffic, she will go in the SEO direction and so on…

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