Monday, February 13, 2006

Website Opinions

My website is going to to be revamped later this year in preparation for the release of Slave to Sensation. Before Gabrielle starts redoing the site, I'd like to ask for some feedback from you all as to what you like to see on an author's website when you visit. (Feedback idea copied shamelessly from the awesome Alison Kent).

To break it up:
  • (1) What specific pages do you like to see on a site? ie. Author Bio / Excerpts / Upcoming releases etc?
  • (2) What pages do you like to see updated often? On my current website, I have a welcome message on the front page that I change every month so people know the site's been updated, but I'm thinking of doing away with that. Bad idea?
  • (3) What do you think of drop-down menus (where you scroll over, for example, Books, and a menu drops down all the options to do with books eg. excerpts / books in a series etc)? Does it make it easier to negotiate a site or harder?
Answer any or all that take your fancy and thanks in advance! :)


Lynn Raye Harris said...

Hi, Nalini. Alison Kent sent me over. :) Hmm, to answer your questions.

I love an author bio. I also like excerpts. I love links and tips for writers (naturally). I think a great opening page should prominently feature the newest release and I'd like to see that updated with news/reviews, etc.

I don't like drop down menus too much, mostly because I scroll too fast and then I lose the thing I wanted or click on the wrong thing.

I see nothing wrong with a welcome message. I've been experimenting with my own website, just for the heck of it since I have no book length work being published yet, and I don't update the website too often (not much to update, LOL!). I do keep my blog up to date, and I love it when an author has a blog. Don't know if any of this helps. :)


Milady Insanity said...

Hmm... I got here from Alison Kent too...

I always like the A Day In My Life As A Writer type of thing.

If you do write series, a page listing how your books are connected would be excellent.

I do know a lot of people don't like white words on black backgrounds, because they say it's hard to see.

Emma Sinclair said...

One thing I've seen more of lately are kind of like DVD extra's with Behind the Scenes, Deleted Scenes, How this book came to be, etc. I think that's cool.

I like it when there's new info on the front page every month or so (including new release info). I like to know that I'm not looking at an author's website who hasn't written anything in years, you know.

I LOVE your travel diaries and pictures so I hope you keep them!!

Maura said...

Hmmm - what do I like to see...

I like to have the front page be updated frequently and have the most current release AND next upcoming release on it with an eta. This helps me to see what's going on without having to surf through the whole site.

I enjoy having the author information like bio, etc.

I always love links and tip for writers.

Excerpts and links for buying are terrific - I buy online almost 100% of the time.

I'm torn on the idea of the drop down menus. While they reduce the clutter of the front page, they are difficult in multiple browsers and I often seem to lose them. And the people who have to use page reader software or are handicapped in multiple ways have a very hard time with them.

And I didn't get here through Alison Kent, though I read her site blog too :)

Nalini Singh said...

These are all great suggestions! Thanks a bunch for taking the time to give such detailed answers.

Lynn & Milady - thanks for dropping by :) (Must go pay Alison for all these referrals LOL!)

Emma - Glad you like the Travel Diary. To be honest, I wasn't even sure anyone was reading it! So it's very good to hear that there is an audience for it.

Maura & Lynn - sounds like those drop-down menus have some drawbacks I hadn't thought about before. Maybe I'll end up going with more page tabs instead.

Josie said...

I've noticed my favorite websites are colorful and pretty. Of course, everyone has different tastes. Some people might not like too much color, but I adore it! These are some of the sites I've bookmarked so I can visit them often:

Nalini Singh said...

That's an interesting comment, Josie - I was thinking of going darker because of the paranormal aspects, but I like color too, so maybe more 'cold' colors (blues etc) rather than warm ones.

Maura said...

My website is darker than normal too - because I write paranormal and erotic and I'm definitely not into the pastels or paler colors.

My blog and my website basically match in look & feel which I think helps to tie them together better.

Josie said...

Maura, I love your sites! Even though the colors are darker, they look gorgeous. And I like that your website and blog compliment each other. I should try that with my sites when I have some time...

Nalini Singh said...

I like your website, too, Maura. I love the color blue. :)

Streamlining the blog/website is in the plan so hopefully that'll work out - you're right in that it ties things together far better.

Maura said...

Thanks for the compliments on the website. I'm really happy with how it turned out - now to add content.

Of course, I have the perfect excuse, I've been writing! LOL

katie g. said...

I also love to see a booklist and which books go together. I think this will become more important as you publish more books (can't wait!) so that readers can keep up.