Blog Review: The Cayman Host

Maurice Snell requested a Free Blog Review of his blog, The Cayman Host and here it is…

What is The Cayman Host?

The Cayman Host

Unfortunately, there is no About page that I could find on the blog. I recommend adding one as soon as possible. However, the Disclosure page did reveal that Maurice lives on Grand Cayman, not really surprising considering the name of the blog though.

It’s hard to determine the exact nature of the blog when you arrive there. Is it a blog about making money online? One about the Caymans? General topic? Getting this up front will really help the first time visitor get a better feel for the site.

Site Design/Theme

The site is a two column theme with a right side bar. Overall the theme, while not outstanding, is clean and readable.

Site navigation isn’t as good as it could be. Aside from the search and category form, located below the fold, and the "Older Posts" link at the bottom of the page there is no way to get to older posts. The site could be improved by adding in Recent and Best post areas toward the top of the page.

Near the top of the page there are translation links. I normally don’t recommend these but given that the site is representing a popular tourist destination they make sense here. Below that are RSS feeds, including a scrolling widget. The non-advertising portion of the sidebar includes links to popular blog tracking and directory services.

Monetization is considerable on the sidebar but not overpowering. At the top is a Scratchback widget. (I bought a link there.) WidgetBucks didn’t work so well for me but he might be doing better with it. He’s experimented with several programs according to what I read. Hopefully, Maurice is tracking the activity on these ads to determine which make money and which don’t.

The tag cloud ad is annoying since it’s easy to assume it’s site navigation when it really isn’t. This could cause users to leave and not return due to the annoyance.

I also don’t care for is the Internet Explorer nag that shows up if you’re using IE. While I use Firefox most of the time myself and I’m aware of the CSS annoyances that IE represents, having such a nag degrades the user experience on the site and may drive IE users away from your site, something you don’t want if you want to effectively monetize your site.

Content

Maurice has several good articles.

One of the first that caught my eye was one with his wife’s art work, Awesome Artist, Awesome Wife. Excellent art work so make sure you check it out.

There is also this good resource article on StumbleUpon, Stumbleupon Reviews & Guides.

In this article, How Do I Make Money Online Part One - Kiosk.ws Affiliate Program, he describes how he makes money online. It’s a little long but interesting to read.

Overall

I liked the content I read but it was hard to find. I think that by improving navigation, adding a good About page and getting rid of the IE nag and tag cloud ad that The Cayman Host can do very well.

Get Your Site Reviewed

If you would like your site reviewed by me for free, just like Maurice did, use my Free Blog Review page to request one.

 


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4 Comments »

2007-11-07 03:56:18

Thank you for posting such a quick and interesting (to me at least) review of my blog.

The things you have mentioned will all be taken on board and I think they are fair points. It is always interesting to note what readers might find annoying about a site, and I am certainly going to review some of the issues you raise.

The comments on navigation are particularly useful, and I will be working on that post haste. The IE nag was only very recently added so it’s good to hear your thoughts - perhaps it is a little too “in your face”……

The tag cloud surprised me, but I can see your argument. Perhaps with improved navigation it would be less of a problem. Certainly something for me to think about.

Feedback of this nature is always welcome and you’ve provided an honest and forthright review with some good suggestions for areas I can improve upon.

Thank you for taking the time to review me fairly and honestly.

Of course, you have already won my wife over quite completely :-)

Comment by jfc
2007-11-07 06:49:36

Hi Maurice,

I hope it helps you improve you site. You’ve got some good articles over there. Best of luck to you and your wife.

 
 
Comment by MerDuriaN
2007-11-07 04:38:01

Just visited your free review blog here. The first post content showed about illusions paintings.
Anyways I seldom see a bloggers provide free review of people’s blog.

Comment by jfc
2007-11-07 06:54:58

Thanks for stopping by MerDuriaN,

The free blog review idea is one of the ways I promote this blog.

 
 
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