For the past several months we've been working on the new design for Hands-on Web Hosting (http://www.handsonwebhosting.com). The last design was created in September 2010. We started the redesign in December 2011, but it wasn't until just Thursday last week (almost May 2012) that we finally were able to launch. The longest part of the design was actually the testing. Almost 2 months in testing.
Key features of the site;
Stripped down navigation
Integration with our support/billing system
Dynamically changing pricing on the site
Development of more than 170 additional content pages (total is now over 250 pages)
Easy to access Order Buttons
Switch between US and UK DataCenter information (no longer different domains)
SSL Site is now 100% integrated also, and dynamic pricing based on years
There's much more than went into the website than the above, but those are the highlights. We've received pretty positive reviews from our clients and other industry persons, but lets get your feed back too
The entire site is Wordpress, with lots of extra custom code. Every now and then we notice the Twitter Feed has a delayed response on displaying the content, but we're working on that.
I think you've done a good job, much better than the last one. The only thing I'd mention is the logo - and simple graphics on the site.
To start with, the logo. The font is horrible - it looks old school - whereas the rest of the site looks very up-to-date. The color - the blue - makes it disappear. My advice (I'm no designer, but as a potential customer), make the logo stick out more - Hands-on Web Hosting is too long. Maybe brand it as simple Hands-On, with web-hosting written underneath. The icon is unmemorable and will work against you acquiring new clients in my opinion.
You're a web-hosting company. Your company should be with technology, and the logo makes me feel like you're not up-to-date. I'm not saying web hosting companies should be winning design awards, but honestly (sorry to be harsh), I wouldn't trust a company with a logo like yours to keep my web-servers up and running 99% of the time.
Sorry for the rant, you've obviously put a lot of effort into the re-build of the site. It looks much better - and my only real issue is the logo which might sound stupid. But it's your icon, its supposed to tell us who you are, and as it is, it tells us the wrong story. I think if you hire a firm to design a logo based on your real values - and the effort you've put in - along with updating some of the big graphics under the navigation - you'll certainly appeal more to people.
You're asking people to trust you with their businesses - you have to give them the ability to trust you in every aspect, even design! I feel the same way about Host Gators website - but at the end of the day, they have a more or less unlimited advertising budget, and IMO, that is why they are successful!
Anyway, good job, it looks fantastic minus the logo - I wish you the best!
EDIT: Also - the facebook/twitter/google + stuff on the right hand side has got to go. You already have the well implemented versions on the left-side.
We've been around since the early '90s, and about 2 years ago we had our logo redesigned and implemented. This was a big company rebranding and at the time, the site also had a major changeover. If you thought the current design is old school, you should have seen the old logo I fully agree that first impressions count.
With regards to the facebook, google and twitter - the big reason for the icons on the right side is that the ones on the left are strictly a feed. A user is not able to "like" a page, or "tweet" a page. They are strictly an RSS feed. We have requested the developer to make a box so that items can be tweeted out, but as of yet, that hasn't happened. As a result, the icons on the right are required in order for clients to like, tweet and facebook post various pages. Once the script developer comes out with the newer version, we will be removing the items on the right side.
I agree with nomatch, that logo needs some changing. It brings down the overall look of the site. It's too flat, and the blue is way too dull. I actually covered it with my hand to se how the rest looks. Don't get me wrong, everything else looks great and professional, it's just that logo! It looks so out of place.