Do not re-invent the wheel; just make a better working one

interactive_middle_east

This post is written by Humza Ijaz is a Digital Creative Director, currently working @ LBI. His interests include: Designing for Web, Looking out for new technologies and has a new hobby of studying information design.

This is exactly the thinking that went into choosing a re-design for www.interactiveme.com

Before I took up the opportunity of being a regular contributor to this blog – Tarek Kassar (founder of this blog) asked me to help him out with the re-design of the blog. My vision to him was to move the site from a more content heavy magazine style to more of a blog style approach. Below were the 5 insights to support my reasoning’s to him.

2010 is the year of simplicity

This means fewer pages, less clicks, less clutter and more whitespace. The old website is an information overload, the analytics are showing us that people don’t spend more than 3-4 minutes on the home page. Hence, why give them so much content upfront.

You are a magazine broadcasting all things digital not “world issues”

Unlike CNN, whose site architecture has so much wealth of information that a mashup layout for the home page is the most possible solution for a clean information architecture.

Content is King

Interactive ME, is one of the best websites in terms of providing digital content worth reading – so why is it all hidden? Hence the new site brings the content up and front not in a shy manner, but boldy making a statement and making it interesting for you to read and share.

We are humans, we get bored

Each time a visitor clicks deeper into your site, a fraction of their interest dies. Hence, the idea of “single page” website came to mind and burying the idea of “categories”. So if you are interested in a topic, you check it out, read it or subscribe to it.

Learn from others and your mistakes

We did a benchmark of more than 5 popular blog sites and we seemed to find a pattern in the way they worked. Tight grids, big visuals, chunky headlines, white colors and most importantly – the blog style. Some of the references we checked:

In the end, we were all quiet happy with the result and would be looking froward to everyone’s feedback.

Major thanks goes out to Shuja Shabandri @smshuja for helping us hack the wp template to make it work the way we wanted it to 😉

Happy weekend everyone!

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4 Comments

  1. I am actually quiet keen to check what the results will be like. However, on the other hand quiet confident as well that we will get positive results! Tarek, will you share some results by end of this month?

  2. dude, i didn't know it has been only 2 days!!!… i was referring to the older one (1 or 2 months back)..

    with this new clean and sleek homepage, the content now stands out much more than before and you can easily navigate through the latest posts..

    well done,

    cheers,

  3. Thanks Mohammed for your feedback.

    Basically, this new design has been up for 2 days only, so my review to it comes after a month from now in order to get the real difference without being inaccurate. And yes this design definitely is giving exposure to the 4 days and above articles that were usually out of the sight in the previous website.

    Well, all are happy and our team will be happy when we see the results.

    regards,

  4. Intreseting article, fully agree with Humza.

    Tarek, did you see significant increase in traffic since the redesign and how did the clicks heat map for the homepage changes from the old design to the new one, and did the new design gave more exposure to the inside articles.. And finally can you share some high level figures for these changes.

    Cheers

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