Thanks to Bryan Cassidy of Tourfolio.com for volunteering to go first!
This is my initial thoughts after spending some time at his site - this is not intended to be comprehensive, just some first impressions to GET THE CONVERSATION FLOWING, and I may jump back in with more comments later.
Any forum member is free to add their own comments after spending some time at TourFolio.com - and you're also free to agree or disagree with me (or anyone), but please be specific with your reasons if you disagree - thanks!
So, in my humble opinion......
1. I like the clean layout and simple design - the colors are easy on the eyes, the font is readable, and there is not much to distract from the content;
2. I like the photo at the top of the topmost post - large enough to be noticeable without being overwhelming;
3. The navigation below the logo is clear and easy to understand what you'll get if you click on any of the links;
4. Good clear use of social media networking connections - both in the upper sidebar and on each post - I love that you make it easy for others to retweet your posts;
What Could Be Better:
1. The navigation way up at the top of the page could be clearer - I almost didn't see it and was looking for some link to Archives to see what else might interest me;
2. I like the section for popular posts, but would also like to see a section or tab for Recent Posts - I often like to see a link to what else has been posted (Yes I know I can just scroll down, but sometimes people are in a hurry - if they see a link they may be inclined to click on it rather than scrolling);
3. The "Welcome to Tourfolio" section in the upper sidebar takes up a lot of valuable real estate that MIGHT work better if it was in the right side of the (black) header - out of the way but still very easy to see/read - this would pull up the sidebar so that the Popular Posts section might be at least partly above the fold, which can encourage readers to stay around to read other posts;
4. Aside from the word "Tour" in the name, it doesn't shout "Travel" to me. Keeping in mind that many site visitors make up their mind to stay or leave within just a few precious seconds, I believe a site should leave one with a clear impression of what it's about with just a glance.
5. I didn't find any Tags listed at the end of the posts - displaying Tags helps people to stick around and read more stories when they find one they like by helping them easily find similar stories;
1. I'm not sure how to make the site look more like "travel" without sacrificing some of the cleanliness of the design and layout, which I like - maybe making the photo at the top of the topmost post a bit larger might help, or keeping that topmost 'section' for a 'featured destination' article? Or perhaps a logo that incorporates some image of travel?
2. Expand your "About" page a bit - readers will want to know more about you and where you've been, and they'll be more inclined to remain loyal readers if they can establish a more personal impression of you.
3. Add a few more social sharing/bookmarking options - while it's true that most people use Facebook and Twitter, a number of other services still have a high quantity of users, such as Stumbleupon among others;