I do have this gate latch on one of my back pasture gates. I would think the design would make it less difficult to use if it were frozen. Next time we have freezing rain, I will try to remember to go check and see if that latch is more user friendly.
Not sure if you REEEALLLY want anymore feedback, but since I design websites for a living as well as test user experience on websites as well as software interfaces -
Links at the top are too small. I realize they're at the top, but keep in mind not everyone is perfectly blessed with great vision or young enough to see something that small. Legibility problems are a big problem on the web.
Links also have no hover effect on them. I'd at least like to see some sort of hover effect so that person knows it's link since right now in their rested/inactive state, they have nothing, and in active state, they're underlined. You want to make a clear definition and make sure people know they're links.
Your logo area takes up way too much space. As much as I hate to admit that there is a fold in web design, there is. Does the logo and horse picture need that much of a height? It looks like you could reduce all the padding on top and bottom to something much smaller, that way it brings the actual important content that people are on the site for.
Home has a box after it.. why? It's also the same size as your content. If "Home" is a header that appears on other pages to signify what page they're on, make it bigger. I also don't think it's necessary on this page at all, but that's just me.
Your "find me on facebook" link is much smaller and in a different font than the rest of the text. This shouldn't be a whole url - give it some sort of vanity - AKA: "For updates, find The Pitchfork Chronicles on Facebook" and link only the word "facebook"
Horse picture at the bottom is cute, but out of place and just kind of floating there. I would've rather liked to have seen it worked into the text above and watched the text wrap around it.
Site counters are from the world of year of 2000 and ebay - please take it out. It just looks silly and out of place.
Why the huge gap on the left? My fear is that it's reminiscent of wanting to have a left hand navigation here, but that doesn't exist on this page, so it pushes your content to the right.
The navigation that you have at the bottom has the fast-forward icon as a separator. To me it looks like breadcrumbs that a large site would have that indicates to someone where they are on the site. Here is just looks ill-used.
I just glanced at a few inner pages, and it looks like you pile a ton of information in without any real way of separating it - for instance, on Stable and Farm, you have multiple sections like "Farm Layout" "Fencing" - Why NOT use that awkward area to the left to make it navigate to those sections when they click on it? This page is ripe for that opportunity due to how long it is.
I'd go on, but it's a little hard to go through the whole thing.
A friend told me to start a FB page so I did. I didn't realize that you couldn't have a FB page for a business! I think I had friend requested everyone that FB suggested and I was up to some 300+ people. Then I get a note from FB saying they didn't believe that I was who I said I was and I had to identify people in pictures that they sent me. I failed the test! Lesson learned!
If anyone from Coth suddenly lost the FB page, I apologize. It is now possible to get to FB from my website, and that will be how I will announcing updates to the website.
Horsegal, thank you for your insight. I guess that's the difference between what professionals see and what beginners see! I have so much information that it is getting lost in the shuffle and probably turning some viewers off.
I agree with your assessment. I'm not sure my web host has the ability to make the changes that you suggest and I'm still thinking of changing hosts once I have a majority of the work done. I'm serious when I say my experience with computers is on the very basic level. I guess my site is the equivalent of watching a walk trot lesson when you're used to watching Grand Prix!
Thanks again for taking the time to share your thoughts and experience. I really appreciate it.
Michele this is just awesome!!! I just found it at work on my lunch hour & I reluctantly have to pull myself away from it now to go back to "work"
Only comment now, besides it's total awesomeness (already got a few tips I want to include in my barn!) is that several of the pictures were slow to load - some hadn't loaded by the time I had to leave - don't know if this is just my computer or something that can be fixed. Hopefully in time for my next break so I can drool some more!
Just what us small horse farm people needed - especially those of us running it on our own!
I can't get any answers from my servers as to why it is so slow to load on some computers. Some of my friends have no issues at all, but enough people have said something that it is definitely a problem. I just don't know how to fix it!
I am happy to include anyones helpful hints or ideas and would be glad to give you credit!
I have been wanting to do something like this for so long and it's finally taking shape, despite my lack of computer skills! I do have to laugh because so many of my solutions on the website are decidedly low tech!