I'm launching a company and currently working on the website. Here is the link: http://goo.gl/HKbIK As I'm not a professional webdesigner your comments / feedback / suggestions of improvements would be very welcome!

It's a 'parralax' style design with several large, striking high-resolution background images, overlaid with simple information graphics about the product. It can be navigated by scrolling down or using the jump links at the top.

Many thanks for your help,

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    For questions like this it's a good idea to decribe your site and any thoughts you have on what you think is missing. Partly, so that we're answering a general type of design problem which other people might have and might google and might find useful. I'm editting in a few thoughts to give you an idea, feel free to edit these if I'm mis-representing the essence of your question. – user56reinstatemonica8 Jul 28 '12 at 13:17
  • This question seems out of date now as it seems the site should've launched already, judging by the countdown at 0? There is no sign of a parralax effect or anything really. Any chance you could post a link to a site that has the qualities you describe, for future visitors? – Lasse V. Karlsen Aug 6 '12 at 9:57
  • Hi - actually still working on it so your feedback is welcome ;-) Updated URL: goo.gl/HKbIK – Greg Aug 6 '12 at 17:36
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    Questions are not meant to be morphed from "need help with v0" to "need help with v1" to "need help with v3". The answers provided may not be valid as the question changes and there is no way for this question to be a useful resource to future visitors. Closing as Too Localized... – Farray Aug 6 '12 at 18:27
  • Yeah, that kind of thing is one of the very few cases where long, rambling forum threads are actually more appropriate than a Q&A structure like this. Please do come back any time you're looking for clear definitive answers on clear fixed questions, they're what this site is designed for and it's really good for those. – user56reinstatemonica8 Aug 6 '12 at 23:32

I am a sucker for the parallax effect and you've done a nice job with it but, a parallax effect in a website to me anyways doesn't give me the impression of a serious company. it has a vibe that fits more with lively or creative persons. that's why I'd use it for something like a portfolio work. also the text in black at the top left corner

"Company name was incorporated in May 2011

Our mission is to supply the finest natural mineral water with sustainability, local community support and industry expertise."

doesn't feel right for me but I can't put my finger on exactly why is that. it looks out of place. also I didn't like the gimmick of the black bubbles that open up when you hover over part of this text.

I hope I helped you. :)

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  • Thanks for your comments! I changed the main page layout, does it look better like this? – Greg Jul 28 '12 at 13:01
  • yea way better. could you try placing the old diagram in the home page but keep the current heading text? also I found a small bug. if you scroll down with the mouse straight to the bottom of the page after a refresh you can see the contact form. – Jake Jul 28 '12 at 13:11

If something about the design doesn't feel like it's working and you're not sure what, I'd suggest thinking in terms of figure/ground and how that affects the visual heirarchy.

It's a classic fact of perception: a lot is taken in by the eyes, but only a small minority of it is foreground, gaining direct attention, while the rest acts as context and background. A good design needs to control figure/ground, so the content gains direct attention and the context and background that gives the content character slips into the background where it can work its magic withou distracting the viewer or crowding the scene.

Your site has very striking, crisp background images: they look great and convey a lot of character, but if their role is to be background, they shouldn't compete for attention with your actual content, and it seems like at the moment they are.

A few suggestions:

  • Since it's a web site, think about loading order. Right now, the content loads first, then an interesting background image dramatically appears after loading, and distracts from it. You don't want to keep users waiting before they see the content, but you don't want them distracted either. Try different things, one free idea off the top of my head would be something that refreshes the content with an extra containing element on $(document).ready() so that it regains the viewers' attention after tha page has finished loading and the background image has landed.
  • Think about pulling the content together into more of a discrete unit and space that clearly stands out as the thing to focus on. Some things to consider: bringing text in from the edges, more padding and whitespace on the elements themselves, and translucent containers for elements that don't have them (e.g. the first chunk). The padding around your text containers is very tight - whitespace (which of course isn't neccessarily white...) is a great way to give content promenance.
  • Think about the focal point for each chunk. When each chunk appears, you want your user's pointed right at the point to start reading. There are too many ways to do this to list, so experiment. This question How to draw attention to a specific area of a design? might help give you some ideas - but just notice things people use in web pages, magazines, adverts... anything where they need it to be obvious where to start reading.

Your site isn't working if you show it to people and they say "Wow, I love the background images! Hmm... Okay, it's something to do with water, is it?". It's working if they read the content, digest the content, then say "And it looks great! I love the background images!"

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