Well I suppose this is past due as I have been going on about this website now for almost two weeks. So this is my semi-official review of the site, filled with my opinions, suggestions and comparisons. I introduced YkClassifieds.com back in our Online Classified War post and now I want to go over some things with the site so lets begin.
I want to start with the Domain Name and the Site Name, as they are what everyone will know and refer to them as. YkClassifieds.com is a pretty much bang on name; it won’t confuse, mislead, or deceive you. You would assume that the “yk” is an abbreviation of Yellowknife, which it is. Most of the Yellowknifers I know refer to the city by that name, then the word classifieds, which can’t really be mistaken for anything else either. What I have noticed that has nothing to do with YkClassifieds itself, is that a lot of Yellowknife websites have taken up using “yk” in their names, mine included. We have YkCity.ca, YkTrader.com, YkOnline.ca, YkOffroad, and than there are clubs and sports teams using it as well. I’m just wondering if it is getting over used, what do you think?
What I can’t fully understand with the site name is why it is called YkClassifieds but yet is advertised as a Northern Classified site. I just went over that the name is good for a Yellowknife Classified site as it clearly was directed to that market. So why if intended for all of the North or NWT still use YkClassifieds.com, why not change the domain? I have registered enough domains in my day to know that they are only around $10.00 a name and easy to get. If this site is marketed outside of Yellowknife, I think it wouldn’t take to well as people would see the name and automatically consider it just another website for Yellowknife.
Once in the site you will see a very Craigslist or Kijiji kind of look. You see all the categories and all the sub-categories right in front of you. Personally I don’t like this look, my eyes go crazy trying to read everything, and I would much prefer a drop menu or how eBay does it. You choose the category, sub-category, and so on until you are where you want to browse threw ads. I don’t think this can be changed as that is probably how the script is set up, but I feel like I am constantly trying to get back to a none existent home page, then again I could just be to use to the way YkTrader works.
With the navigation of the site fresh in your mind I want to continue talking about it. I am assuming that the site wide navigation bar is the one in the left sidebar but I feel it is lacking and needs some serious reconsideration. First we have the HOME tab, which is fine and only makes sense to have. But then we have Post Ad, Post Event, and Post Image for the next 3, which I don’t like. I don’t think we a need the 3 of them always showing. What I think would make more sense is to have a general “Post” tab and when the mouse rolls over said tab a pop out menu slides out with more options. Yes, this is similar to how YkTrader does it but I think it works and gives a cleaner, sleeker look. Before I move on to the next tab I have to wonder what exactly is the “Post Image” for, there is no explanation as to why you should post a picture. You don’t know where it is going or what it will be used for. Huh.
On to the next tab Help/FAQ, which is essential to any site like this. So having it in the navigation bar is a good thing but what is currently on that page is another story. There are only 6 questions or how-tos on the page so far, all with very brief explanations. I don’t think someone who has no idea of what they are doing would be able to figure it out. The key to any FAQ site is to explain how to do something in the utmost detail so that even the most Internet illiterate person can figure it out.
The Events Photo tab, which is next down the list, is probably the one tab I shouldn’t talk about right now, as it goes nowhere. You click it that tab, see where it takes you. You end up on the creator’s photo site at a gallery that the public is locked out of. Now I am all for self-promotion and new features but really, a dead link? Wait until everything is working properly before adding it to an active site, even if you add the tab and just have it loop back to the homepage would be fine with me but don’t send people on a wide goose chase for nothing.
The Contest tab is the last tab I am going to talk about, as the My Account seems pretty self-explanatory and needed. The Contest tab is a good idea if the site is going to be holding contests frequently but that doesn’t appear to be the case at the moment. The tab is linked to a PDF and I’m sorry but I can’t stay when PDF’s are used for stupid things like this. Don’t get me wrong, I like PDF’s but you should only use them when needed. For forms, e-books, newsletters, etc. not something like brief contest details. The details should be right on the site as that is where the contest is being held.
Well it seems I have lagged this Review on for longer than I anticipated, so I am going to stop it here and make this a 2 part series. This being Part 1. I would like to encourage all my readers to comment below on YkClassifieds, do you agree with me? Don’t you? What would you suggest?