Portugal – it’s about the horses!

In the very distant past I was lucky enough to spend a bit of time in Northern Portugal – a ghost town with fabulous homes lying empty after the drug barons were closed down. My memories are of amazing night clubs and even better mountain biking.

What I didn’t get to do was horse riding – although the horse on the home page of Portugal Web looks like he’d be more than I could handle. Portugal Web is an online shop for equestrian goodies, wine and gourmet olive oil and pine nuts. It seems an unusual combination but all suitably rural.

The site itself has been designed nicely and the shop matches the information side of the site which shows a clear commitment by the owners.

The font switches from serif to sans serif which is probably poor editing rather than a conscious choice and needs to be tidied up. The text itself is well written but in places could do with a review by a passing English backpacker (perhaps) to loosen up some of the sentences.

The photos are great quality and are consistent in their style.

By using javascript right mouse clicks are blocked. Not only does that make it harder to view the source or pinch photos but it makes it harder to open several pages at a time – and in this instance I’d have thought that would be desirable.

If image theft is a problem then its time to consider some of the tricks that will stop most people in their tracks:

  1. link to the image in the css
  2. embed the image in the css – but not so smart for really big images, however with a bit of programming each page could automatically call it’s associated stylesheet which fiddles with the page content.

I’d prefer to see a small watermark on each of the product images so that if people do lift them they have a permanent reminder of where they came from, and employ anti-hotlinking on the server if bandwidth is an issue – lots of good tricks there.

There’s something funny going on with the left hand menu on the internal pages (eg Horse riding and training in Portugal) and the way it loads that I found disconcerting. The page source seemed fine but without being able to load firebug I couldn’t constructively identify what was happening.

The site is well established, the domain is coming up to it’s 9th birthday and since atleast 2002 has been used by this company. It’s been submitted and accepted to DMOZ, Yahoo and BOTW.

Google knows the site well and for pages like the one promoting the Lusitano brand, it ranks #1 ahead of the company itself. Infact all the searches I did had good results – but as with anything there is plenty of competition.

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2 Comments

  1. November 11, 2008

    Nice, do you plan to visit us again? 🙂

  2. November 11, 2008

    I’d love to 🙂 My holidays these days tend to be closer to home (NZ) though.

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