I'm looking for some constructive criticism regarding a site that is pretty new. The site in question is ServiceNinja - http://www.serviceninja.com/ a services marketplace. It allows you the ability to outsource your projects to freelances for low costs. Freelancers will then compete to gain your business.
How accurate is your first post? A lot of people say they want a review but then get their knickes all twisted when somebody offers their review.
Well here goes.
Firstly how your website appeals to first time visitors is important since you are competing against some already evry well established webite offering a similar thing.
There is too much black, While I like some darker colours in the background to make sites a little easier to read rather than staring at a lightbulb bright white screen the black is too much. Consider changing the black sections to a lighter colour, but NOT white. Also perhaps use a couple of different colours? ie one darl shade for the extreme background, then another dark shade for background behind the categories, and main content areas.
the smaller font which is non-bolded is difficult to read, either enlarge the font or perhaps try a different font colour when you have a new background colour, this may help although a larger font would be preferable.
Ok, that clears up what I see when I first go there, now, your marketing.
What makes you better than the rest? Why should a freelancer or buyer list a project on your site instead of a well-established competitors?
Are your services free? Do you promote to a better audience? Do you have cashback offers (ie promo where you pay for 1 project a mth out of the completed projects... good idea for a promo) Are you aimed at a niche market? ie do you only list forum projects, or only php, or something similar? (targetted market)
What is it that sets you apart from the rest? Answer that question then SCREAM IT OUT LOUD ON ALL YOUR PAGES!!!!!!!
Once you have established what it is that sets you apart from the 'big boys' Say so, Create an image or a text box somewhere that shows on all pages to say "We offer one lucky project buyer every month their money back!' Or whatever it is that makes you better.
You must give people a reason to use your site instead of a competitors, Dont hide it in a back page somewhere, scream it on every page. People need a reason to use your site instead of the one with hundreds of freelancers and new projects listed daily.
Hope this helps, good luck with the site, Im sure with the right work you will go far, I have considered a site similar recently but it has been put on hold until i complete some other projects. There is room for another major player in this particular industry.