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  • should I redesign?

    Hey to my 3dcart family! I would like to post a link to our store which has been with 3dcart going on 1 year in February. I am posting the link now, because I am thinking about doing a redesign. I'm thinking on removing the right hand side banners and enlarging the main page to 1028 px. Any input? The reason being that for some reason, the side banners are causing the site to load slowly. Also, if anyone could possibly give other input on the site so I can be sure it will be the best it can be. I would really appreciate any constructive feedback! Thanks in advance, and might I add there are many pro sites here!

    Here is the link to our store using 3dcart software: http://www.trailerandtruckparts.com

    Thanks again!
    Petra
    Last edited by MissHTML; 02-02-2009, 06:24 PM. Reason: forgot url
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    ¸.•´¸.•*¨) ¸.•*¨)
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    * P£†®ª *

    Shadow Trailers
    www.TrailerandTruckParts.com
    www.Trailer-Wheels.com
    www.iTrailerParts.com

  • #2
    You're right - your site takes a LONG time to load and I have DSL.

    Have you experimented to see exactly what is causing the delay? Your images on your front page arn't small - but I wouldn't think they would cause such delays. However they are probably costing you a LOT of bandwidth.

    What about the live chat feature - have you tried removing that temporarily just to see if load time improves?

    If you just rearrange what you have and remove the the right banner - I don't think you'll see any improvement, and you may be able to keep a lot of what you have if you can identify the culprit.

    Good luck - I'll be glad to try loading it again to see if it loads faster after you've made adjustments.
    C Ekman
    Owner/Designer: Cobweb Corner
    http://www.cobwebcorner.com

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    • #3
      The flash took a long time to load for me. About 60 seconds.

      Comment


      • #4
        From what I experienced, it's loading sequentially from left to right and when it hits the flash part in the middle it holds up and loads the whole thing before loading beneath that or the right banner. It's pretty cool, but I'd experiment with taking it out just to see if that dramatically improves things.

        Do you have caching installed? It's really easy with 3dcart (bottom of gen. settings page) and will improve your load times noticeably by storing already-loaded templates so they don't need to be called again and again.

        On design: I don't think a major overhaul is in order, the style suits the product and it's clean enough to navigate. I like how the "banner ads" (for lack of a better term) on the right are partially separated from the main page, that looks nice. Though you may think about making the content over there less stale. If I'm ON the trailer wheel page I don't much care about what that banner says, and if I'm on the Fenders page I still don't much care... tell me something about fenders! :D

        I like it though, good site, just need to work on the speed issue a bit

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        • #5
          You might check out:

          http://www.websiteoptimization.com/services/analyze/

          It should tell you which items on your page are the largest and take the longest to load.

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          • #6
            Thanks Jared ... great site.

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            • #7
              One other thought - while the link I posted above will show you how big each element on your page is, it won't actually show you delays based on rending time (by your browser) or loading delays (due to a slow external server) - there are other utilities which do that, but not too many which are free... if you want to check for this, consider downloading Google's Chrome browser - it has a "Javascript console" (under Developer) that will show you how long each element took to load (including server delays and rendering) - this also might help you track down trouble spots...

              Another option is to test out this program (which you can download) which does similar things (and has a 30-day trial):

              http://www.web-site-test.com/

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              • #8
                Wow, thank you everyone for the responses. I removed the livechat which improved the loading a bit. The flash is a bit big, but I can't remove that until after we have our tradeshow (Boss wants it there). Glowsource, I noticed that too. It loads from left to right and those right banners are taking forever to load because of that flash presentation. Jared thanks for the info, have yoiu ever tried NetMechanic.net? Good one too, they have a toolbox that you can use to do similar to what you mentioned. It's not free but they let you try the toolbox free, and I've been using it free since 2001 LOL. Okay I'm going to go over all of these posts in peace and work on the site. Thank you all again, it's much appreciated, really!!!
                (¯`v´¯)
                `*.¸.*´

                ¸.•´¸.•*¨) ¸.•*¨)
                (¸.•´ (¸.•´ .•´ ¸¸.•¨¯`•
                * P£†®ª *

                Shadow Trailers
                www.TrailerandTruckParts.com
                www.Trailer-Wheels.com
                www.iTrailerParts.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by glowsource View Post
                  From what I experienced, it's loading sequentially from left to right and when it hits the flash part in the middle it holds up and loads the whole thing before loading beneath that or the right banner. It's pretty cool, but I'd experiment with taking it out just to see if that dramatically improves things.

                  Do you have caching installed? It's really easy with 3dcart (bottom of gen. settings page) and will improve your load times noticeably by storing already-loaded templates so they don't need to be called again and again.

                  On design: I don't think a major overhaul is in order, the style suits the product and it's clean enough to navigate. I like how the "banner ads" (for lack of a better term) on the right are partially separated from the main page, that looks nice. Though you may think about making the content over there less stale. If I'm ON the trailer wheel page I don't much care about what that banner says, and if I'm on the Fenders page I still don't much care... tell me something about fenders! :D

                  I like it though, good site, just need to work on the speed issue a bit
                  The banner ads on the side I'm not sure about how to make them change for each page, as these are on the frames page and are always the same or is there a way to do it differently?

                  Where exactly do I set up caching in the cart? Thanks again! very constructive.
                  (¯`v´¯)
                  `*.¸.*´

                  ¸.•´¸.•*¨) ¸.•*¨)
                  (¸.•´ (¸.•´ .•´ ¸¸.•¨¯`•
                  * P£†®ª *

                  Shadow Trailers
                  www.TrailerandTruckParts.com
                  www.Trailer-Wheels.com
                  www.iTrailerParts.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You set up the cache the bottom of the "general settings" screen (the one with the large amount of radio buttons and what not). All you need to do is click "enable cache" and set the time to 10 or 15min, recommended. Poof, you're done!

                    NOTE: This will delay seeing changes made in templates a lot of the time because those are stored and not reloaded with each page. Just click "clear cache" (right next to the cache options) if you want to see them immediately, but this will also clear the carts of any of your customers, so beware.

                    As for the different banners, I've never actually tried it so I can't particularly say but we've had success sort of hacking the pages to do what we want with multiple template options and the like. Maybe you can specify a different template to use for a particular page (instead of frame) and have that contain a different banner? IDK, that'd be pretty cool but I really have no idea how to go about it.... just experiment I guess.

                    OR, you could run a randomizer script in there and make a handful of banners for your best products. It wouldn't really help the "relevancy" problem but at least you'd be advertising some more diverse products :cool:

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