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Lane

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I'm currently over hauling my website. 100% completely. My current site (www.LuxuryLaneSoap.com) has a very alternative, very different feel and approach. It is one of the only B&B shops that has a black based color system...

Well, I started building that site nearly 2 years ago and now programming and such has changed SO much! They have systems and site building tools that streamline the process to cut your web design time by 75% :shock:

My sales have massively jumped in volume and I simply can not keep my current site updated. The new site I am building is so stream lined that what use to take me 2 hours, now only takes me 15 mins.

I've been reading a lot about web site over hauls and the number one warning is that it could cause your customers to feel isolated and left out of the loop... But I don't think I will have this problem because it is an alternative site and I don't have many "alternative " customers. My customer base has swollen into the modern, mid thirties to forties age group. And I think they just tolerate my "loud" site because they like my products.

Ugh. I wish I could show you the new site so you can compare...Maybe I can screen shot...
 

Lane

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Oh...my question...how would you feel if one of your fav sites completely flipped a 180? Kind of like what WSP did. (Which I LOVE by the way...)
 

Lane

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I've only put 4 hours into it...not near done, I have to work on wording and subcategories but this is just a preview of the LOOK as compared to my current look. My Home Page preview.... PLEASE let me know what you think...pretty please?

:
 

pepperi27

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Lane, girl, I freaking love it! It looks amazing and very professional! This site looks like its for old people like me :) LOL Its clear and I don't have a problem with website that change because sometimes its necessary.
 

Texas_Bubbly

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I think that your personal style absolutely should be reflected in your products and your face on the web. I saw your fish skele imbeds, and thought that it was perfect style for you.

Marketing strategies have been focused on the style preference of the customer for so long... that now, individual style makes a bigger impact. The masses can decorate like Crate N Barrel, but not many people can elicit emotion in their personal style.

There are alot of soapmakers out there, your talent, your style skill and imagination will set you apart. Embrace it, be your own brand. I wish I had such an individualistic nature.

As far as your website evolving, and not wanting to alienate customers... I would stick with the same colors (black!) and add frames or a simple template in black, TBH.

Black is sleek, you can do anything artistic in black and white. Geometric frames, banners, borders ect can be very artistic and universally pleasing.

If all else fails, and you want to justify your black website.... tell your customers about http://www.blackle.com :wink:
 

Lane

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pepperi27 said:
Lane, girl, I freaking love it! It looks amazing and very professional! This site looks like its for old people like me :) LOL Its clear and I don't have a problem with website that change because sometimes its necessary.
Thank you!! *giggles* Hey now! This December I embrace the next age bracket! :shock: No longer do I get to "chill" with the 18-24 yr olds, I'll be drinking coffee with the 25-32 yr olds... :lol: :lol: Yeah...I'm only 24 :oops: Do I still get to hang out with the "Adults" ?

This past year has just been so huge for me, hubby & kids, that I really wanted to "grow up" my site. :)
 

Lane

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Texas_Bubbly said:
I think that your personal style absolutely should be reflected in your products and your face on the web. I saw your fish skele imbeds, and thought that it was perfect style for you.

Marketing strategies have been focused on the style preference of the customer for so long... that now, individual style makes a bigger impact. The masses can decorate like Crate N Barrel, but not many people can elicit emotion in their personal style.

There are alot of soapmakers out there, your talent, your style skill and imagination will set you apart. Embrace it, be your own brand. I wish I had such an individualistic nature.

As far as your website evolving, and not wanting to alienate customers... I would stick with the same colors (black!) and add frames or a simple template in black, TBH.

Black is sleek, you can do anything artistic in black and white. Geometric frames, banners, borders ect can be very artistic and universally pleasing.

If all else fails, and you want to justify your black website.... tell your customers about http://www.blackle.com :wink:
I LOVE LOVE LOVE Blackle!!! It's not that I want to change my site to please the masses...It's that I've changed. Your post is an exact example of what I am afraid of. I don't want customers to think I "Sold Out' to mass consumerism.

Two years ago I was at the front line for the Alt. Mom revolution, pounding power behind causes dedicated to proving tattooed Moms aren't "bad" Moms, but liberated Moms. Never to be limited by the way they look.... Now, I made my case and I just want to snuggle up on the couch and drink tea and read a book.... And NOT spend four hours a day maintaining my site. Heehee.
 

Natalie

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I don't think your black site is loud at all, I think it looks kind of dramatic and the soap colors look great against the black.

I am in your old lady age group and would buy from either site. If I didn't have a couple of tart warmers already (that I rarely use) I'd buy the pink one.

Also, I have came upon websites I've purchased from that have changed their look and never had a problem with it. I just figured they upgraded or something while I was away.
 

Tabitha

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That's a tough one! If I was a regular on your original black site & saw the new apple site & was 25, I would be a little upset.

If you you are able to broaden your customer base w/ a new look, that is great *if* you do not lose your your existing younger hipper customers.

Change is ALWAYS scary!
 

WilsonFamilyPicnic

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i was all freaked out when WSP changed their site, my first thought was, "I HATE THIS, I WILL NEVER GET USED TO IT, WAAAAAA!" but then i got over it, cause they got what i need....

and the older you get, the less its worth it to yell. sit on the couch, drink your tea, plan your battles ahead of time, and then it takes less effort to win against those hot-headed 24 year olds....

when's your bday, fellow sag? i'm dec 5
 

Texas_Bubbly

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Black, sepia and a creamy white would still look "artistic" and mod, while being warm and inviting. Another thing to consider is an urban style, with using the same palate with big splashes of color.. much like your own artwork :wink:

If it comes from the heart, and represents YOU, then you can't go wrong. Your pride and enthusiasm will show through your creativity. I have crafted, made, scupted, dreamed all my life... and I could never force creativity or feign interest in my task if it wasn't part of me.

Like several people said, a web-make over may have been a shock, but in the end, they kept coming back because of the product, not the image.
 

digit

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Tabitha said:
If you you are able to broaden your customer base w/ a new look, that is great *if* you do not lose your your existing younger hipper customers.

Change is ALWAYS scarey!
Ditto.

I like the new look, but I am in one of the other age brackets, lol. This said, I think the black background really made the soaps stand out in the photos. For newer customers, your "soap stylist" photo taking may prove to be an important aspect. :lol:

Certainly do not "sell out", but personally I would want to appeal to a wide audiance in order to generate more sales. You have to get the customer initially, in order to have them coming back for more of your fab products. :D :D You could always have a niche page for target group.

Ultimately you have to do what feels right for you.

Digit
 

mare61

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I love your new site Lane!!! It looks very classy and professional. I loved your old site too, BTW. Compared to you I'm in the 45-dust... age group. Don't change your site just to please your customers. But if you have changed yourself then that's who you are....Everybody changes over the course of their live-span :lol: Your edgy side can still shine through in your new site. maybe in a more mellow way... Hey, I'm a December baby too, born Dec. 7
 

Tabitha

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You could always have a niche page for target group
Ditto!

How about a black photo gallery page & if you advertise on an edgyblog/site/etc you can bring them in to that page & let them discover the balance of the website.
 
G

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site overhaul

Lane, I loved your old site...so I'd like to see something a little edgier, especially if your clients are younger....
 
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