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Site Redesign – Input Requested

Hello hello, friends! As you know, I have been working hard these past few months to turn this blog into something a bit more professional. Professional, but with a continued heavy influence of fart jokes and “that’s what she said” comments. It’s a thing.

As I think about the long-term plan for this place, I keep coming back to wanting to redesign the site. I am currently using a template from a company that is fine but is not customized for me. I have been on a waiting list to formally apply to the waiting list (yep, that’s a thing) for a company whose work I admire. The waiting list will open later this fall, and then I have to wait in a queue for my turn. I’m the kind of impatient person who will yell at the microwave to hurry up, but for this, I am doing my best to bide my time.

While I twiddle my thumbs, it gives me ample opportunity to think about this space and how I want it to look and feel. My hope is for something fun, user-friendly, easy to navigate, and makes you smile.

But while I have ideas, I am not actually the end user. You fabulous people are! Thus, I’m hoping to pick your brains today in an effort to make any potential redesign kick ass for all involved. If you have a few minutes to answer some questions, I would greatly appreciate it. And while I’ll look at all the results and compile them into an Excel file (#nerdalert), I may not be able to implement all suggestions made.

Please leave your answers to these questions in the comments:

  1. What is one thing (or a few things) about this site that you’d like to remain after the redesign? I’m talking more about the navigation of the page, not my writing topics, or things like that.
  2. What is one thing (or a few things) you’d love to see improved? And yes, I hate the ads too. But until I can figure out a better way to monetize, they are part of this place. 🙁
  3. I’m not looking to copy any other bloggers, but would you like to share a link to a site that you love? What is it that you love about the site?

I so appreciate your time in advance as I spiff things up!

 

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44 comments on “Site Redesign – Input Requested”

  1. I read through Feedly so normally only click through to comment. If you could make your most recent post appear first on the home page that would be great. The Bloggess is a good example of that. Epbot recently changed so you have to click through from an RSS feed to see the whole article, I think you get maybe the first third in the preview, I’d be happy to do that if it gave you advertising revenue.

  2. I love how you have a section labeled ‘Hippy Shit’. It makes me giggle every time ?

    • It makes me laugh too. One time, a reader sent me a HUGE email (seriously, it was so long) about how I was trying too hard to be quirky and “cute” and she pointed to the “Hippie Shit” category as an example of that.

      I kindly wrote her back and let her know that on the blog, I’m actually only about 50% as quirky and weird as I am in real life. Can’t win them all!

  3. I love you. I love your blog.

    I want you to update your picture so people can admire your current state of sexiness.

  4. I like: the photos or illustrations you have on every post.

    Please (please please) make it mobile friendly!

    The Frugal Girl has done a good job of having a site that looks great in both desktop and mobile versions.

    • My template is categorized as mobile friendly. You have to have certain aspects to be considered mobile friendly, and all those boxes are checked for my site. You can access everything on mobile that you can on the desktop. Can you please explain more about your experience as to why it isn’t mobile friendly for you? Details will help me so much. Thanks!

  5. I read your blog for the content, and really don’t even notice the design. Maybe that’s just my personality, but truly I can’t think of a thing you should change. Not much help, BUUUUTTT, flattering. 😉 I have ditched reading 90% of the blogs I used to follow, but have yours and a couple others that I’m excited to see pop up (I read via Bloglovin).

    • Aww, thanks so much!

      I never read blogs for the site design, but I’ll stop reading blogs if the site pisses me off too much. If it’s hard to navigate or doesn’t make sense, I’ll often just give up on it out of laziness.

  6. I would hate for you to change your blog — it\’s easy to see when you have a new post as soon as I open your blog, your content is AWESOME (or, if you prefer, AMAZEBALLLLS). I like the clean look and, in fact, yours is one of the few blogs that doesn\’t cause me to either sigh or cuss in frustration.

    As far as ads, I disable Java and have no ads to bother me at all. I know you want to change, but I wish you wouldn\’t!

    • Thanks so much. My most recent post is actually under the three posts at the top of my home page. It’s a super weird layout, and always something that has irked me. Same on mobile. But my goal with the redesign to make things better and user-friendly. So if you like it as is, you’ll LOVE any improvements because I aim for it to only get better.

  7. I love reading your blog, but the last design update you did made it very difficult to read, and I must confess that I no longer visit as often. If you could at least get rid of one of the duplicate headers, that would be a vast improvement. I understand that you need to have ads, but between the ad bar at the top and the “share” bar at the bottom, there’s only about 2/3 of the screen left to view your content (the stuff I come here to see).

    • Can you tell me what you mean by “duplicate headers”? Is it part of the design that you’re referring to, or ad related?

      What has made it difficult to read (other than the ads)? This is all great feedback, but I want to dig deeper to make sure I am understanding it. Thanks!

      • By “duplicate headers” I mean that the bar that reads “Home, About Me, etc.” appears at the very top aligned to the left and then again underneath aligned to the right (next to the picture with the mason jars).

        What’s made it a bit difficult to read is that the posts aren’t organized chronologically on the home page. Everything seems a bit choppy on the home page. A couple blogs that I think are laid out nicely are http://www.thefrugalgirl.com/ and http://www.frugalwoods.com/

      • Ah, got it. Thanks so much for responding and for further details!

        Yeah, the most recent post on the homepage is at the bottom. I too find that super annoying. The rest of the posts are in order, but the most recent one throws me off too.

  8. 1. I enjoy your photos with the comments under them. Can you tell I’m not a techie??
    2. Please quit apologizing for the ads. While I’m not a techie, we all know ads are part of the deal. I appreciate your disclosures about products, however.
    3. True story, your blog is my favorite…the one I quote to others, the one I encourage others to check out and the standard I use for the other ones I go to.

    While the design may change, I’m okay with whatever format you use…it’s still gonna be awesome ?

  9. I love your blog and writing.
    1. I like that one can easily look up past recipes. I like that you section out the different type of posts.
    2. I would like to see the most recent post at the top of the page. It is usually like that, but not always.
    3. http://soulemama.com
    I like that the post are in order of most recent. She doesn’t have ads, but has sponsors posts on weekend. I’m not sure if that is something you could also do.

  10. I love smittenkitchen because it’s easy to read and find things. I love your blog but it’s difficult to figure out what’s most recent sometimes because of the separate categories and how it’s presented on the blog’s landing page.

    lime green for links is a little difficult to read (just FYI) but doesn’t stop me from coming by.

    • I never liked the lime either. The template came with a grey, but people complained I never linked anything…they just couldn’t see it because of the font.

      I just changed it to a lighter blue for links. Would love to hear how it’s looking for you.