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Thread: Dummy Sites Pro/Cons

  1. #1
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    I am just starting out in web design and recently someone on these message boards told me to make some Dummy sites to put into my portfolio.

    Basically what he said was to create a site that I designed and made that would be put in my portfolio but is not really for a client just what I made up and created my self.

    But im not really sure if I should make some dummy sites of just find some work so if you could give me some pro's and con's for dummy sites and also some advice ive been thinking about this for quite some time not and I need some help.


  2. #2
    An Inconvenient Serving Size hurricaneone's Avatar
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    I don't see the problem with doing dummy sites to build a portfolio - I mean, it's unfortunate that you can't find a paying customer, but the first customer is sometimes the most difficult to land.

    Anyway, maybe doing dummy sites'll allow you to get into things that a 'corporate' or 'professional' site wouldn't allow. That could offer the chance to learn, experiment and impress, though if you're planning on landing the corporate deals, keep the eye-candy demos under wraps until after they've signed the contract.


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    i make demo sites.. to show what i can do.. demo navigation... demo graphics.. things like that

  4. #4
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    Originally posted by mikecoutermarsh
    i make demo sites.. to show what i can do.. demo navigation... demo graphics.. things like that
    I think you and GrantUnwin mean the same thing when you say "demo" and he says "dummy".

    Making some "sample" sites is a good idea. If you have no work to show, why would I hire you? I have no idea if you're any good or not.

    -scott

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    yes, but i make the demos for the client thats consedering me.. ive ogtten emails saying "i really like your work, but do you have any examples of this style"

    so i make up quick little demos to show that i can do that

  6. #6
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    Originally posted by mikecoutermarsh
    yes, but i make the demos for the client thats consedering me.. ive ogtten emails saying "i really like your work, but do you have any examples of this style"

    so i make up quick little demos to show that i can do that
    That's cool, but couldn't post the demos on your site for other potential clients?

    -scott

  7. #7
    An Inconvenient Serving Size hurricaneone's Avatar
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    Originally posted by nocrapchurch
    Originally posted by mikecoutermarsh
    yes, but i make the demos for the client thats consedering me.. ive ogtten emails saying "i really like your work, but do you have any examples of this style"

    so i make up quick little demos to show that i can do that
    That's cool, but couldn't post the demos on your site for other potential clients?

    -scott
    Not to mention, Mike, according to a post I made a while ago, you and I have different ideas of demos - my demos take days, where as your demos take hours. Not that there's anything wrong with that (just different styles), but maybe the time difference could make the final product 'portfolio-worthy' as opposed to not.

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    i just use mine to give clients an idea of what they would be getting if they chose me.

    i think the idea of portfolio worthy sites is a great idea.. and i think im gonna make a couple.

  9. #9
    Senior Member enstent's Avatar
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    What if your demo stuff is better then your client stuff?

    My site http://www.shiftback.com

    VS my demos

    http://www.shiftback.com/hybrid
    http://www.shiftback.com/board
    http://www.shiftback.com/counter

    I think Demos and Dummy sites are they way to show your true colors.

  10. #10
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    Is there also any disadvantages and things I have to watch out for.

  11. #11
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    Dummy Sites for Portfolio

    There is nothing at all wrong with posting dummy sites or demos online for potential customers to view. The site you'll want to start with is your own, even if it's still under construction or being revamped (like mine is being revamped).
    What I also do is put demos online featuring the client's own company and copypoints, even if they have a current website online.
    This generally has the effect of an "Oh, wow!" or "I'm impressed".
    The climate is still rich with prospects, even for an upstart. I still consider myself an upstart with my own company, even though I've been online for 18 months. It's toughest to talk people into sites who do not have them or don't see a point to the internet. That's when you pull out all of the eagerness you have and share it with them, then offer to put together a demo or preview. This will get their attention and generally only requires 2 to 3 hours of work. Just a small preview can do the trick.
    Good luck with your business, and hopefully we won't be competing for the same clients!
    Dan Pryor
    Rodan Media Group
    http://www.rodanmedia.net

  12. #12
    Senior Member enstent's Avatar
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    Today I recieved over 100 hits to my site and about half of them came from my last post on this thread. Not one person today signed my guestbook. Do people not like signing guestbooks anymore? Or is my just not working?

  13. #13
    An Inconvenient Serving Size hurricaneone's Avatar
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    Originally posted by enstent
    Today I recieved over 100 hits to my site and about half of them came from my last post on this thread. Not one person today signed my guestbook. Do people not like signing guestbooks anymore? Or is my just not working?
    I'm sure everyone appreciates the links you posted, but (trying not to hijack this thread), I'm sure you realize that people signing guestbooks is a choice, not a requirement. Unless of course, you slap it on the front of your site and demand an entry for entrance, but I don't think that's such a great idea.

    I hope you don't either, enstent.

    If you're still rooked about the lack of response, I recommend that you post over in the CL - I'm sure they've got a few words (helpful, I hope) to share about convincing your site traffic to spare a moment.

    Cheers

  14. #14
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    Originally posted by GrantUnwin
    I am just starting out in web design and recently someone on these message boards told me to make some Dummy sites to put into my portfolio.

    Basically what he said was to create a site that I designed and made that would be put in my portfolio but is not really for a client just what I made up and created my self.

    But im not really sure if I should make some dummy sites of just find some work so if you could give me some pro's and con's for dummy sites and also some advice ive been thinking about this for quite some time not and I need some help.

    Dummy sites are WAY better for your portfolio than "trying" to get a paying job. The dummy site allows you full creative license, it will show what you can do instead of what someone is paying (telling) you to do. Whatever you do don't give your work away! Long term you'll go farther, and feel better about YOUR work.
    Good Luck.
    Mark
    mark@mylink.net

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    Welcome to flashkit mstroz!

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    well what types of things impress people. Im not really sure because not much impresses me anymore.
    I suppose its gotta be original but thats about all I can see.

  17. #17
    curmudgeon swampy's Avatar
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    go for it, I did a couple of dummy sites as well as doing some freebie sites for friends who have businesses (bars etc) they just paid for the domain name and hosting.

    I also made up companies : my girlfriend is now an international fashion designer, my mum a knitwear designer etc, you get the picture. I did the dummy sites, redirected and masked the URL to a directory on my homesite so I didn't have to pay for any more hosting. Got the job, took down the sites.


  18. #18
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    Grant: Not much impresses you know because your a designer... and know how it was made...

    before i got my "eyes" i thought a mask that follows the mouse was extremly cool!

  19. #19
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    LMAO, me too but what would impress you now I mean you must be pretty good at flash for 450+ messages and a homepage like that.

  20. #20
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    lol... not much impresses me.. i love whos we

    when i first saw the 2a site i was like.. umm thats ok.. so i closed the browser.. then i went back again and actully looked at the pages.. and said "i like the graphics!"

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