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Nima

Win a 40'' Metallic Black Hookah (Worth $109.00 + Shipping)

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Smoking-Hookah.com is sponsoring a giveaway for Hookah.org members and visitors.

Prize: 40'' Metallic Black Hookah

The rules are simple:

1) Check out Smoking-Hookah.com's new modern / responsive design and layout

2) Write a one paragraph min review of their new website design on this thread

3) if we have 10 or reviews the prize will be given to a random reviewer

Giveaway starts today (01/29/14) and ends on February 16, 2014 at midnight

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I will start off with the stem, which looks wonderful. The ability to change the height will make cleaning and storage of the hookah easier and less of a hassle. Another good point for the hookah is that the orbs on the stem will act like a heat sink and draw the heat out of the smoke as it goes down into the base. The ports for the hose and check valve(some may call it purge valve) are unique and obviously won't get into the way of the second ash tray. The hose looks wonderful, and seems that it would have an easy draw. With the hose being silicone and glass it is easily washable and will last for a long time. From just seeing this hookah and not being able to smoke it I would give the design a solid 9/10. It is well designed and it shows, the only thing we need to know is how well it smokes.

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I will start off with the stem, which looks wonderful. The ability to change the height will make cleaning and storage of the hookah easier and less of a hassle. Another good point for the hookah is that the orbs on the stem will act like a heat sink and draw the heat out of the smoke as it goes down into the base. The ports for the hose and check valve(some may call it purge valve) are unique and obviously won't get into the way of the second ash tray. The hose looks wonderful, and seems that it would have an easy draw. With the hose being silicone and glass it is easily washable and will last for a long time. From just seeing this hookah and not being able to smoke it I would give the design a solid 9/10. It is well designed and it shows, the only thing we need to know is how well it smokes.

The giveaway is for reviewing Smoking-Hookah.com's website design and different setions of the website, not the design of the hookah

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Well, there were a few good points about the site I wish to cover. The First is the user friendly navigation of the overall site. It is easy to read, the pictures are detailed, and the product explanations are superb. The second was the wide selection and array of products. They cover far more than just the basic hookah supplies. T shirts, music, even Arabic style clothing and board games! The third point ( and probably the best one ) is the prices. Very affordable. Not many places sell their Syrian hookahs, for example, at such affordable prices. I have been looking for one, and I might buy one right here.

Smoking-Hookah.com is definitely looking sharp, and will warrant my business in the near future.

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The giveaway is for reviewing Smoking-Hookah.com's website design and different setions of the website, not the design of the hookah

That's my bad but there is a wonderful review on the hookah. Haha

Chernobyl should be a commercial host or something....lol

If anyone wants me to do commercial hosting or anything of the sort PM me.

To fix my idiocy from earlier lets go and review the website!

The site loads very quickly, for me it was fully loaded in under two seconds. It may sound trivial but if the site loads slowly you are less likely to spend more time on it. At the homepage you are shown a refreshing, yet simple design with the most important information at the top. Which includes the company's logo, your account, shopping cart, wishlist and a home button. The design of the buttons are wonderful, but they are a bit too large. Cut those down a bit and allow more of the information we truly want to see on the screen at one time. Below those are the sections of the websites, which have a quick drop down menu. I love this feature because you can quickly find what you are looking for by just hovering over the selection. Under that they include a search bar and their customer support number. The search function is easy to use, nothing much to talk about. With the customer support number, I would rather see a Live Chat button so I can talk to someone on the computer rather than calling but that is my personal opinion. I'll be looking more closely in a minute but for now I give the website a 8.5-9. It is fast, responsive, looks great and is simple to use.

I'll continue after this short break. Haha.

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EDIT: I realize I got carried away with my review. It's not 1-2 paragraphs. I'll edit it later.

I'm a web developer, so I feel my review on this might be a bit harsh... but here goes.

TL;DR: A very nice site, great product selection, mobile works well, and a site I will definitely consider when purchasing hookah products in the near future.

Full rant:

For starters, I have a very large display, and the first thing I noticed is the background image (the dark blue/purple "Arabic" pattern) doesn't repeat vertically. The background pattern could be made smaller by cutting a 4x4 section into that grid and repeating it. That would also help load time...

Which, on to my next point, the initial page load speed appears to be pretty quick, but takes about 5-6 seconds altogether. I'm on a 25mb down connection. I decided to investigate - the best pages (and also how pages get better ratings on search engines like Google) load in 2 seconds or less, complete with all assets (images, javascript, css, everything). There are around 135 requests (individual assets, images, css files, javascripts, anything) that load up when the home page loads. I can see from my web developer tools that most are cached, but the images should be pushed off to a CDN, like Amazon S3, Amazon CloudFront, or Rackspace - that way, instead of the maximum requests being 4 at a time from any server (it's part of the HTTP protocol), there could be more happening simultaneously, thus resulting in a faster page speed.

From a design standpoint, the front page looks relatively clean and very consistent. Sizing it down to mobile width works very well, but I worry about the page speed affecting people connecting on 3G or 4G, getting a very quick experience. The sales image with the 40% off star looks a little amateurish, but my guess is, since it is a sale, it probably won't be up long anyway.

The colors are very nice and consistent, but could be a little lighter.

The sales image for "The 40" Metallic Hookahs ... For Only $109.99"... no one should use System font for anything other than writing code.

The tags at the bottom of the page are begging for Google to knock them back a few pages. They probably should be removed.

There is an icon at the bottom saying it's secured by RapidSSL, but the URL in the browser is http:// and not https://. That image should only be displayed on pages that have SSL (https) enabled, and honestly, it probably should be enabled on all pages.

The sub-product pages mimic the home page quite nicely, but the sidebars are a little messy. The "special offers" probably shouldn't be shown here - it takes away from the pages, and makes the user think it's a source for ad revenue, and honestly, makes it feel a little cheap.

As far as the product pages, they are some of the sexiest pages on the site. The nav tabs below each image are beautiful. However, having a "15% off Fantasia" sale with a time countdown in the product description is really... confusing.

Navigation at the top is also confusing... there's a Login/Register nav, a "Large button" nav, and a menu of options for the products. I would advise consolidating these options. I'd probably move the "search" bar below the large buttons (moving the shop nav below it), and consolidate the shop nav to:

Home | Packages | Hookah | Shisha | Accessories & Other | E-Hookah | New | Sale | Contact

Having that on multiple lines is messy and takes away from people with smaller displays.

I tried adding a product to the cart to test it out - it seemed fairly straight forward, but it then told me "The following item will be added to your cart", with a $8 mini joke hookah. You can obviously decline, but it would be nice to instead display a few items on the Cart page. Amazon does this very well when you add an item to a Wish List - you get suggestions of other products. It just seemed a little odd, but the fact I could decline it was fine.

Then I clicked Check Out, and it gave me the same popup again. That annoyed me.

I didn't work my way through the entire order process, but the page looks nice and clean, and appears to work properly. It does switch over to SSL, which I'm glad it did.

I would advise the developers to check out Google PageSpeed and analyze the site. The insights on it are really bad: 32/100 for mobile, 40/100 for desktop. It's nearly impossible to get a 100/100 rating for a site that has so many products and product images, but an 85 or 90 is not unachievable. Nothing a couple hours of developer work time couldn't bring up to at least the mid-70s.

As far as the product offerings, I have to say, with the exception of not carrying Tangiers, they have a fantastic selection of unique products you might not be able to find on other sites - Haze tobacco and the UNIT & UNITY hookahs being the most noticeable. I would make it a point to promote those - large hookahs, syrians, and even KMs can be found in a lot of places, but even though Haze is getting more well known, it's would be awesome to promote them.

Overall, despite my "web developer" state of view that happens to notice every detail, it's a very well organized website, and with a few bits of polish, this could easily be a fantastic portal to purchase tobacco and associated products. The fact they sell things like Darbukas, board games, and scarves, in addition to the typical "we sell hookahs and shishas and stuff to make them work" products, makes this a really unique site, and I will definitely consider them in the future for purchases.

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EDIT: I realize I got carried away with my review. It's not 1-2 paragraphs. I'll edit it later.

I'm a web developer, so I feel my review on this might be a bit harsh... but here goes.

TL;DR: A very nice site, great product selection, mobile works well, and a site I will definitely consider when purchasing hookah products in the near future.

Full rant:

For starters, I have a very large display, and the first thing I noticed is the background image (the dark blue/purple "Arabic" pattern) doesn't repeat vertically. The background pattern could be made smaller by cutting a 4x4 section into that grid and repeating it. That would also help load time...

Which, on to my next point, the initial page load speed appears to be pretty quick, but takes about 5-6 seconds altogether. I'm on a 25mb down connection. I decided to investigate - the best pages (and also how pages get better ratings on search engines like Google) load in 2 seconds or less, complete with all assets (images, javascript, css, everything). There are around 135 requests (individual assets, images, css files, javascripts, anything) that load up when the home page loads. I can see from my web developer tools that most are cached, but the images should be pushed off to a CDN, like Amazon S3, Amazon CloudFront, or Rackspace - that way, instead of the maximum requests being 4 at a time from any server (it's part of the HTTP protocol), there could be more happening simultaneously, thus resulting in a faster page speed.

From a design standpoint, the front page looks relatively clean and very consistent. Sizing it down to mobile width works very well, but I worry about the page speed affecting people connecting on 3G or 4G, getting a very quick experience. The sales image with the 40% off star looks a little amateurish, but my guess is, since it is a sale, it probably won't be up long anyway.

The colors are very nice and consistent, but could be a little lighter.

The sales image for "The 40" Metallic Hookahs ... For Only $109.99"... no one should use System font for anything other than writing code.

The tags at the bottom of the page are begging for Google to knock them back a few pages. They probably should be removed.

There is an icon at the bottom saying it's secured by RapidSSL, but the URL in the browser is http:// and not https://. That image should only be displayed on pages that have SSL (https) enabled, and honestly, it probably should be enabled on all pages.

The sub-product pages mimic the home page quite nicely, but the sidebars are a little messy. The "special offers" probably shouldn't be shown here - it takes away from the pages, and makes the user think it's a source for ad revenue, and honestly, makes it feel a little cheap.

As far as the product pages, they are some of the sexiest pages on the site. The nav tabs below each image are beautiful. However, having a "15% off Fantasia" sale with a time countdown in the product description is really... confusing.

Navigation at the top is also confusing... there's a Login/Register nav, a "Large button" nav, and a menu of options for the products. I would advise consolidating these options. I'd probably move the "search" bar below the large buttons (moving the shop nav below it), and consolidate the shop nav to:

Home | Packages | Hookah | Shisha | Accessories & Other | E-Hookah | New | Sale | Contact

Having that on multiple lines is messy and takes away from people with smaller displays.

I tried adding a product to the cart to test it out - it seemed fairly straight forward, but it then told me "The following item will be added to your cart", with a $8 mini joke hookah. You can obviously decline, but it would be nice to instead display a few items on the Cart page. Amazon does this very well when you add an item to a Wish List - you get suggestions of other products. It just seemed a little odd, but the fact I could decline it was fine.

Then I clicked Check Out, and it gave me the same popup again. That annoyed me.

I didn't work my way through the entire order process, but the page looks nice and clean, and appears to work properly. It does switch over to SSL, which I'm glad it did.

I would advise the developers to check out Google PageSpeed and analyze the site. The insights on it are really bad: 32/100 for mobile, 40/100 for desktop. It's nearly impossible to get a 100/100 rating for a site that has so many products and product images, but an 85 or 90 is not unachievable. Nothing a couple hours of developer work time couldn't bring up to at least the mid-70s.

As far as the product offerings, I have to say, with the exception of not carrying Tangiers, they have a fantastic selection of unique products you might not be able to find on other sites - Haze tobacco and the UNIT & UNITY hookahs being the most noticeable. I would make it a point to promote those - large hookahs, syrians, and even KMs can be found in a lot of places, but even though Haze is getting more well known, it's would be awesome to promote them.

Overall, despite my "web developer" state of view that happens to notice every detail, it's a very well organized website, and with a few bits of polish, this could easily be a fantastic portal to purchase tobacco and associated products. The fact they sell things like Darbukas, board games, and scarves, in addition to the typical "we sell hookahs and shishas and stuff to make them work" products, makes this a really unique site, and I will definitely consider them in the future for purchases.

Very nice review. Don't reduce it for sure. I'll remove the limit from the OP too

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I'll throw my (non-existent) hat in here. This is from a consumers view point rather than a web designers/developers, just to give some variety from the awesome review that doug did. Though all of his points are valid and important.

I've known about Smoking Hookah for quite some time, in fact, they were one of the companies I first investigated when I started ordering my stuff online. But I never did order from them because their website just looked so out dated and kind of sketchy to me. Call me paranoid, but I just didn't want to give my money to someone who couldn't make at least a decent website. But now with the new design it looks and feels awesome and trustworthy and I would definitely give them my money without concern.

The navigation is super clean and easy to use, you can get anywhere you need to in a matter of seconds with one click, and thats important. If people can't find what they need(quickly), then they leave. The color scheme is attractive but the one thing throwing it off for me is the background, but that's not really a big deal. I like that they have a wish list feature, this is something I actually use on other sites, even non-hookah related because it helps me remember what it is I want to buy next when it's time to order. That way I can add in all the flavors I want to try as well as my old favorites and add them to the cart quickly and easily.

Overall the new website design they have done is 150% better than the one they used to have and I'm sure that it is already paying off for them and will continue to do so in the future. And that is my short and sweet review.

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I went to the site and thought it was beautiful. I love the purple. All the linkies one might need to find ('contact us,' 'wish list,' etc.) were easily located. I was surfing the site from my phone and that might be why I didn't get much further than the home page. I tried to scroll through hookah accessories and it went well at first, but then they didn't want to scroll anymore. I tried to find a link that would allow me to open accessories in a new window, no luck. Looking at products one at a time by scrolling through them feels clumsy and time consuming.

In short, I loved the look of the home page, everything there was laid out beautifully. But I'd like an easier way to views products. I love shopping for hookah accessories, but this was difficult at Smoking-Hookah.com.

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at the top banner, you should only have your key pages on there, Home, Hookah, Shisha, Accessories. checkout and shopping cart can be smaller links in the top corner along with your phone number and business hours. Remove the Call US action box and put the search box below your Key Item header.

Reduce the amount of options in your menu, this should be one row of links, and use subcategories to include the other items on your menu.

Free Shipping advertisement should be above the fold (IE viewable without scrolling down.)

Instead of having your homepage jamming products in your face, using great banners for users to click and direct you to a product page has worked well for.me.

All those changes are very simple and quick

the foundation is there, now just clean it up :) thumbs up!

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Dear fellow Hookah lovers,

I really enjoyed checking out the new site. First off, I'd like to start out by saying that if you need Hookah supplies and accessories this is definitely one of top sites to go to. It has a very innovative navigation and layout especially for those first time users. The tabs on top that direct you to any of the hookah supplies comes in handy. The next feature I love the most is the search bar that narrows down what you are looking for. Last but far from least I love the advertisements that show off the newest popular products as well as their featured products and great deals. The reason why I say great deals is because I compared the products to other websites and I'm very pleased with what I have seen and experienced . Thank the Hookah gods for this one...

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This being my first time to Smoking Hookah I really like it. The front page is wonderful. It is simple and easy to read and yet they have managed to incorporate a large quantity of products. In the top portion of the page all of the links are easy to read which is really nice. Other sites have the links mashed in with pictures or colorful backgrounds which is always annoying. I don't know about other people but when I am ordering something I usually contact the company and ask some questions for them to clarify some stuff for me. A lot of times finding contact info is difficult but on this webpage it is right at the top making it easy.

As you go down the front page I like how they highlight a variety of products instead of the number one sellers since they are often expensive. This variety also shows me some products that I might not of known about before hand so in doing that I find some cool new items. The coupon code in big letters in front of graphics is really helpful. Some websites have coupons but they hide them in various corners which are often missed but they have theirs in the middle of the home page for everyone to see.

When I click on products to view them the page is laid out pretty well. Nothing to complicated which is good.

The mobile website is pretty good too. I think the layout can be a little cleaner but overall it works. I often think of accessories or shishas that I want while smoking so having a well working mobile website is definitely a plus because I can look it up and add it to my wish list.

The only thing I do not like is that I did not know about this site before I ordered some hookah stuff last week because they have some good prices. I will definitely be using this site more often.

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Overall I like the site. W0uld prefer smaller icons at the top. Would also like if they were in their own frame so I would not have to scroll back to the top. Like the highlights on sale items

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I found the website very easy to navigate. The large format for the link buttons, etc. makes it immediately accessible to the area I'm interested in. Over all it is a great site. The only criticism I have is the generic design. It looks more like a consulting business or canned site built from a template and doesn't have a specific Smoking-Hookah.com brand image I can grasp on to. All in all I'll take ease of use and simplicity over the esthetically pleasing any day.

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I am very impressed with the site, it loads quickly without a bunch of bs. Navigating to the individual sections is easy and fast, with each one having its own subgroup, allowing the user to choose hers or his specific item without having to scroll thru the endless maze of products to get to it. I like the site and will definitely try them in the future

Sent from my SPH-L300 using Tapatalk

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As a very new hookah owner (only about month) and regular online shopper, I can make this easy and tell you right off the bat what's my favorite feature; it's the wishlist! I love everything about the site, the look-and-feel, the navigation and the subtle colors. Everything is lovely, but oh that whishlist has to be the best part.

What I do is I go and learn from sites like this one what it is that I want to get. I then go to smoking-hookah.com and add the item to my whislist. If I was rich I would buy everything at once, but I'm not so I have to get things a bit a a time. It's very convenient and easy to use, but it gets better.

I just put in my first order with smoking-hookah.com and all I had to do was login to my wishlist, select the shisha package that I wanted to try and just add that one, single item to the cart to purchase it. The rest of my items stay in the wishlist and the one I purchased comes off.

Now if life was only that simple. S::)

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Honestly, the website itself is very well made. Telling you about features you already consciously implemented that work wouldn't really be that helpful since you would know why it's good, so i'll talk about what I don't like to hopefully make your website better. For one thing, while the background make attract the target audience, I might consider a less 'psychedelic' background as it might pull the attention from the product. I also might put the register information on the right as that is where I am usually accustomed to it being. You could also maybe put a beginner hookah information near the top instead of the bottom or somewhere more effective more people who are just getting into the activity but don't have much experience. It'd probably help your business more since the hookah industry is booming. But honestly, you could go along without implementing my suggestion as the website is great as is. As if it would attract my attention from other competitors, I would say yes as long as you maintain the professional look of your site.

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Hey Guys,

I'd like to start off by saying I absolutely LOOOOVE the valentines day ad. I think it's a great way to advertise the best hookah gifts for that special person in your life. The picture really captures it too. I totally agree with "micaylabutter" when she states that the navigation of the website as a whole is very easy for those first time hookah users. The ads also capture the best features, showing what is HOT and also AFFORDABLE. The tabs at the top of the page provide easy navigation to find anything you are looking for, even questions! Which is huge because I am always looking to improve my hookah experience. You are able to read reviews just by clicking on one of the easy forums that is posted right on the front cover page which is a huge help for people finding the right products. Overall, the layouts of the website are easy, not cluttered and organized for easy navigation, which leads to less frustration and confusion. Hookah.org is my go to site for sure!!

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the website looks great! im a visual person so to see all of the different types of hookahs along with the different accessories that you can purchase right away is very appealing to me. i really like that the dropdown menu comes down when you scroll over the different categories of things you can purchase, the less clicking the better. ive always lived by the "3-click rule" when looking at websites and creating them, where it should take any user 3 clicks to get where they need to go on the webpage. this site definitely abides by this rule and it has a lot of cool features as well to make ease of use better for the site. i also really like that there are flash deals/coupons and sale items on the front page, because everyone knows that will attract a lot of users on its own

one criticism i have is not really of the overall visual of he site, but just the marketing in general. i have not heard of smoking-hookah.com before, but am really impressed with what i have seen after being on the website just one time. if there is some more marketing done (reddit hookah community is a great way to get the word out) or partnering up with some of the other known websites, i can easily see this website taking off.

this is the first time i have actually heard of smoking-hookah.com but im definitely impressed and will likely be coming back to check out a little bit more in depth in terms of what is actually offered as well as prices (know that part is not really valued in this review so ill stay away from it).

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Just a reminder that today is the last day to submit your review to enter the giveaway contest.

Good luck everyone

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