4 thoughts on “A New Look

  1. Do you really want to know?

    Open the browser and look at the home page. What do you see? You see the title, not the content. In fact, the dominant information is the category list, and after that, the reader is left wondering why the RSS feed button looks like it should be a logo. Also: Too much headspace. The title is too large. The color scheme generally has negative connotations. The sub-nav is ‘broken’ by wrapping.

    Better strategy is the Sesame Street Game: Which Group Does This Site Belong With? Look at the top ten blogs. White background. Black Type. Content First. Most recent content stands out. “Orange is the new black.” The way you know a design is good is the data. You measure activity. The way you know it will probably be good in practice is that it’s similar to the top sites, but better.

    “Creativity” is usually overrated in these things. The most popular blog sites on the net nearly put themselves out of business with a redesign this year. It cut traffic by half. People lost their jobs. Advertisers flew. They tried to be cunning. And they blew it.

    If you want to run a hot blog, your content should be special. You’re site should conform to current ‘class’ standards, just like you would dress for an elegant public engagement, but with some subtle personal elegance. Usually a photo or drawing, and a logo. The most important thing you should do to improve your blog is to personalize it. It needs to show your photos or (as Don Boudreaux) an illustration.

    If you want to be trendy, then the current emphasis is on the single- page, one-level of clicks model that best supports the ipad/tablet reading experience. But the most important things are the identity marks: your logos, your tagline, your personal imagery, and your content. Thankfully you have all of these things in spades, you just have to make use of them.

    The current design ignores those assets in favor of…. brown.

    Net is, that it looks amateurish in the new form. But you actually have something to sell, and you’re worth reading. So, the site should emphasize you, and the content.

    (I’m ceo of a large digital advertising and marketing agency. If you want something special I’ll get it done for you without cost. ‘Cause I’m a fan.)

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