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cheapestoil cheapestoil is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 4
Home heating oil price comparison website

Hi,

I have a home heating oil price comparison website: www.CheapestOil.co.uk

It started in Northern Ireland and we are now branching out into the rest of the UK. We would love to hear suggestions on how to make it better.

We are always trying to improve things and appreciate there is plenty of room for improvement so I will brace myself for any painful comments on our need for better design.

Feel free to use puns like "too slick for me" and "what else is in the pipeline?". We'll pretend we've never heard them before.

Thanks
Michael
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cehwitham cehwitham is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 0
The header and links look ok, clearly display the company name and navigation. The next box down is very cluttered and hard to make out the different pieces of content. More white space would help with this and following an order grid rather than multiple items that don't line up.

I think other areas to focus efforts would be in the table of prices, the table looks very old fashioned.

The font families, I can't put my finger on it but I think that is contributing to the old fashioned feel.

And the colour scheme. I think it is possibly the yellow and that shade of blue that are taking me back to the websites of the 90s. I think it would be easier to focus on the information (I presume this is the primary objective) if the site was a bit more light and airy. Give it some space so that people don't feel overloaded.

Hope that is useful, helpful input.
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tin03gin tin03gin is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 127
Michael,

I agree with the above, there is an old fashioned sense to it. In a way it reminds me of a parked site, which is obviously not a good look!

I think a bit more colour, the differing shades of blue are I think not overly user friendly, a white background may be good, or some flash? I appreciate it may not be the most rock and roll of subjects but a bit of snazz may perk things up.

Hope this helps...
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kcumming's Avatar kcumming kcumming is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 4
Mmmm...too much colour

Hi,

Prior to my current role I worked for a small web development business.

The first and most obvious issue is the colour scheme. Current on-trend web development is for a white background, rather than colour as this can make the site look dated.

There is something of a lack of imagery as well. You only have 10 seconds to attract the attention of the casual browser and imagery is great for attracting the attention.

Thirdly, less clutter...there is too much content crammed on too little space. This makes areas of the site lack allignment and this means the site loses something of the professional touch that you would need to have it attract regular use.

Perhaps a cost effective overhaul would help freshen the look of the site?

On a seperate note however, I applaud the idea behind the site and hope it works for you (after a few changes?)

Just my thoughts...do with them as you will.

Kevin
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TurboLemonMedia's Avatar TurboLemonMedia TurboLemonMedia is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 61
Some good comments - a lot I agree with; the block blue colour as a background gives it that web circa 1999 feel - a lighter background would make a surprising difference. And the blue gradient - I think this devalues the site. I think having better proportioned titles/H1/H2s would go a long long way.

I think the main problem here is in layout and information structure. There's a lot of advice - and this is the point, I know. What I think needs to be done is to make it less daunting for the end user. At the moment it's like being smacked in the chops by a Wall Street ticker; it wants to be friendly. Perhaps the competition/mobile/location could go at the bottom. The site wants me to do too much all at the same time.

Think: why would someone visit this site? To find the cheapest oil price. Then that's what you ought to hit them with first. Let them see what they want to see and then begin to upsell other sevices by intelligently placing them.

I'd imagine revenue from Google Ads is minimal - and that the benefit from losing them would be far more rewarding. This would help shake the parked-site look.

I noticed a 'new to the site' link, but I think it'd benefit from a succinct message about what the site is, why the site is and how the site will help the end user. Think Facebook's "Facebook helps you connect and share with the people in your life." Easy peasy. So THAT'S what it does. The photos, videos, games, comments, apps - all that comes once the user has had a chance to digest the purpose.

Hope that helps.
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whichoilsupplier whichoilsupplier is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 1
I read this thread with interest in October last year and the comments made were instrumental in how we designed our new site. We are a start up company and have also formed a price comparison site for the domestic heating oil market called http://www.whichoilsupplier.co.uk - it is a UK based site at present.

I would really appreciate any comments from developers and designers as we are in the final stages before we sign off with our IT guys and we are still able to tweak functionality and design.

We are currently building an online shop which will be selling ancillary products to fund the site.

Many thanks for your time and input

regards

Chris Bale
Director
WhichOilSupplier
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kerosene28 kerosene28 is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 2
Home heating oil price comparison website

You would like to find the cheapest oil price? Please visit our website http://www.comparefueloil.co.uk/. Our Site's Aim: Domestic home heating oil is referred to in many ways, e.g. kerosene, kerosene, central heating oil, fuel oil.

No matter how you refer to it our aim is to help you find the cheapest possible price on domestic home heating oil. By giving you the most up to date comparison price info. To save you both time and money.

You can compare prices UK wide from our trusted home heating oil suppliers in your local area. So you can quickly find the cheapest prices and fastest delivery times around.

Over 3.5 million households in the UK use domestic home heating oil to heat their home. Jet engines also use a type of kerosene mix as fuel and kerosene was first used for oil lamps.

P.S. dont forget to check out the buying group page to see if there are any domestic heating oil consortiums in your area ordering today!.
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thelmabgraham thelmabgraham is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: New York
Posts: 1
Yeah, I come to know so much important information by reeding your website tread. I impress lot. Thanks for sharing such wonderful information.
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mishakrunic mishakrunic is offline
Newbie
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 1
Hi,

if you'd like to receive automatic email alerts whenever price change is detected, please try Price2Psy - http://www.price2spy.com


Best regards
Misha
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Tasha20 Tasha20 is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 4
Oh this is fantastic. I have been looking at something to compare oil prices and find out about price changes! Great post!
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swindejr swindejr is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 1
Important to know who owns these sites

A while ago we did some research into the various heating oil comparison sites, and the results were rather alarming - quite a few were owned by oil suppliers! You can read our findings (and other people's comments) here: http://swinny.net/House_and_Home/Oil...ce-is-owned-by
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TitanWebsites TitanWebsites is offline
Maven
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 77
Hi,

I haven't had time to read all the other posts, but I can see there is not much technical feedback, so here is my bit.

Firstly YOU ARE BREAKING THE LAW. You do not have the legally required contact details on your site. You can read more here: Website guide - companies act websites and emails

No meta description - that's bad
I would have though you should have the keyword "compare" - not seeing it in any useful phrases
You could make better use of onpage titles (h2 and h3)
You could make better use of the ALT tags in your images
You have lots of code errors
Your anchor text on your inbound links is poor.
Are you earning anything from the onpage advertising, if not it is taking away from the site, and as such could be costing you money??

Visually
Your site doesn't "look" like a comparison site, it would not inspire me to believe you can deliver what I need. I am sure selling the Oil Monitor on the front page gets more sales, but it doesn't look good.

On the plus side:
A page rank of 3 is not bad, but you need to aim for 5/6.

Conclusion
I suspect you have a fairly high bounce rate, which I would expect is down to the visual design of the site. If the site is earning you money, invest in a good visual web designer to give it a once over, I suspect it should not cost too much to spruce up, there are only a few pages, maybe 600 tops (guessing without doing a proper informed quote). And fix the errors highlighted, they are quite easy for the most.

Why arn't you charging the oil companies??? If you are generating them business, you could at the very least charge for premium listings or something. Hell if Google can do it, why can't you. I suspect you could make more money this way, than sales and onsite advertising.

I hope this is of some help.

Good luck with your Business.
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