dougbelshaw.com redesign

If you normally get content from dougbelshaw.com via the RSS feed or emails, you might want to stop by the actual site. I’ve given it a bit of a facelift:

Why did I do this? Well the reason I did it today is because I’ve been off work due to illness. I must have a bug or something as I feel rough. 🙁 The reason I decided to make it look the way it does is for the following reasons:

  • teaching.mrbelshaw.co.uk had 3 columns and I found it helpful to be able to have two sidebars – more useful content near the top of the page!
  • It now features the avatar I use in most places online (a South Park character I created here)
  • My Twitter updates are now even more prominent. That’s significant as I spend a good deal of time interacting with people in my network. Now I just need a place to integrate the conversations, rather than just my side of them…

Please do feel free to give me some feedback on the redesign. I am aware, for instance, that it takes a while to load the page. Is that a big issue? :-s

5 Comments

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  1. Thanks for the feedback, Matt. Fair point about the ads – although there’s actually no more than there were originally!

    I’ve removed one block of them, but I’ve still got to pay for my web hosting! 🙂

  2. It looks very busy, maybe a bit too busy. Lots of ads, but I kinda understand that.

  3. I like the avatar on the top but the other stuff will take some time for me to accept – humans don’t like change! 🙂

  4. I'd pull the ads altogther – you'll get more readership and better Googlejuice by not having them and make your money in other ways from that increased readership. It looks a bit tacky.

    The tag cloud is good, shows what you're interested in, but it's lost under a plethora of 'related' stuff. If something's related to that blog post, then put it at the top or bottom of the post, not in the sidebar, which should remain a constant during my surf.

    The stats don't help me do anything as a reader (subscribe, find posts) so I'd get rid of them. Show people how good you are in other ways (like your blog posts).

    The different types of post you present – random, recent, related – need cut back. Have a separate page with your best bits, perhaps, and get rid of the random posts. Your other involvements come through in your blog posts, and if they don't they're probably not relevant any more.

    The top link takes me away from this site to the Tumblr. I'll get confused about where I should go, especially since your delicious links are on this page, too.

    The latest images from Flickr don't actually show me images. As a newbie, I'd find this weird.

    I hope the feedback's useful. The content continues to be great, and I do read through a feed reader, so I'm trying to put myself in the position of someone who reads only a few blogs a day or none, and wants to get to your content quickly, not all the rest.

    Cheers, mate. Hope you get better soon!

  5. @Nick: I never had you down as a reactionary, Nick! 😉

    @Ewan: Great feedback, Ewan! You’re probably right r.e. the ads, so I’ll consider getting rid of them… I’ll address the other, very apposite, points over the weekend. 🙂

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