Reviews & Giveaways

Titles with a red star () before them have giveaways that are still open for entries. (Currently no giveaways are being held.).

2 Responses to “Reviews & Giveaways”

  1. Tri Huynh February 8, 2016 at 4:55 pm #

    Greeting from Vancouver, Canada!

    I came across your blog while reading another blog about Japan. It was your informative comment that caught my attention, and I’m glad I checked you out.

    First of all, amazing blog you have here, rich content over the years and very insightful information about Japan. My only issue with the blog is the navigation.

    It quickly comes to my attention that your blog is quite … hard to navigate. I wanted to read more of your posts about Japan but I couldnt find the best way to do so. Thus comes the point of this comment. I came up with some suggestions which I think would greatly improve your blog in term of user experience. For some reasons, I had a compelling feeling to let you know.

    1. Use a theme mobile support
    The current theme is clean and slick. However, it doesnt have support for mobile(or did you turn it off?). You can tell by the generic drop down and search menu when viewing it on the phone. It’s not a big deal but there are new themes with mobile support now which does improve the look and navigation on mobile phone. Definitely help a try since mobile readers become the main users now. I recommend Sorbet and similar style theme.

    2. Replace ‘Recent comments’ with Popular posts
    I’m sure you have reasons to put it there but for readers like me, I found it not much useful. Maybe useful for you to keep track of you comments since you take the time to reply to all of them, but I would suggest to replace it with ‘Top popular post’, rated either by view or likes. Views is probably better in your case because you have great traffic. This should surface some of your best shots.

    3. Show full Archive menu
    I would prefer the archive menu to show full post names but since you have a lot of contents over the years, it may not be practical. Given that, the drop down menu is hard to use because readers dont know which one to choose. I would suggest to show the archive in full name format (with counter) in a separate place (not the main page) so reader has the option to skim through all of your titles and pick what they want. Experiment with it.

    4. Categories and Tags
    I’m no expert about those things because I cant always tell the differences between them. However, my understanding is that tags are for keyword searching so you can tag whatever you think would be a popular search, while categories are for grouping generic topic together. You seem to use a mixture of those two. Leaving tagging aside, you should use more generic categories to reduce them to a manageable amount. Your category menu has over 20 some of which are quite specific to a place or time. Having too many categories would defeat the purpose.

    I would suggest the following categories: Japan, Tokyo, Festivals, News, Food, History, Travel, Movies, Arts, Family, Nature, Attractions, etc. You get the point.

    For me, I would be interested in Japan, Tokyo, Festivals, Attractions, Tips for travelling

    5. Top menus
    No offence, but you should update on your top menus … The ‘Festivals in Tokyo’ is great since it’s probably the most seek information for traveller like me. Im glad that you put it up there because otherwise I would not be able to find it with reasons above. With the same spirit, I suggest to put more tabs for useful information like those, especially posts about travel tips, attractions, interesting things about Tokyo. You can add tabs for a Category so putting a few popular category tabs would be a great choice.

    You can also combine ‘About me’ and ‘Contact me’ to one page since it’s just static info.

    The ‘What’s that??’ tab can be renamed to ‘Interesting culture’, ‘Japanese Unique Practice’ or something along the line. You should add more things to this page to make it a centralized post about those practices. I would be excited to read all about it.

    The ‘Reviews & Gives Away’ tab needs some explanation because I have no clue how it works, which is part of the reason why I put the comment here because I dont know where else to put it.

    6. Follow button
    I’m surprised that you dont have the ‘Follow me’ button on your side menu. There are 2 types of follow buttons: wordpress button and email button. The email one is more useful because not all people have wordpress so they can just follow you by email. The WP one is annoying because it would ask people to sign up for wordpress.

    7. Check out new widgets and plugins
    I’m not sure how well you know WordPress but it offers some very good widgets and integration now. For example they have ‘instagram’ widget now which shows your latest instagrams.

    That is all for now. I hope you find it useful.

    p/s: remove the calendar widget as well, it doesnt do anything.


    • tokyo5 February 8, 2016 at 11:09 pm #

      >I came across your blog while reading another blog about Japan…I’m glad I checked you out.

      Thanks. Please comment anytime!

      And thank you for all of the suggestions. You seem to know about websites well!
      I’ll look into your suggestions when I get a bit more time.


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