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SearchEngineWatch Launches Redesigned Site

     
2:31 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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The first redesign in the history of SearchEngineWatch is online:

[searchenginewatch.com...]

obligatory site redesign comment 2003: Looks like Google ;-)

2:35 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I am not a big fan of teal and orange, but it makes a statement. I think that it has a slick look though. Not bulky.
2:45 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I like the style and color combo, clean and easy to read. Looks Google-like.
2:55 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I like the look, however the orange on green (?) mouseovers for the left menu are not too good to read. The contrast is harsh.

I dont have any known sight impairment I must note.

3:02 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I'm with you on the orange on green ukgimp - not good on the eyes.

More room for ads... Great...

Otherwise very nice and slick looking.

3:04 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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nice looking but it is a bit harsh
3:41 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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The marketplace on the right hand side is new. I wonder how many firms have requested a text link when advertising. Great site, excellent PR for this industry.
3:42 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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From W3C:

I was not able to extract a character encoding labeling from any of the valid sources for such information. Without encoding information it is impossible to validate the document. The sources I tried are:

The HTTP Content-Type field.
The XML Declaration.
The HTML "META" element.
And I even tried to autodetect it using the algorithm defined in Appendix F of the XML 1.0 Recommendation.

Since none of these sources yielded any usable information, I will not be able to validate this document. Sorry. Please make sure you specify the character encoding in use.

It's a bit busy for me. 6 animated graphics, not enough white space and it violates the first rule of content, TELL THEM WHAT THE PAGE IS ABOUT.

3:43 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I liked the old one better. It had a unique style and wasn't blanketed with advertising or maybe the ads weren't so prominent. Guess ya get kinda spoiled here at WW.
3:44 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Better (easir to find what you need). But hover links color...
3:51 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I agree that it is abit busy on the home page, the colours used are ok ( I suppose).

I dont love it and I dont hate it!

Craig

[edited by: creative_craig at 4:05 pm (utc) on April 9, 2003]

4:02 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Well I won't be renewing my subscription.

(Joke)

4:32 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Im not digging it all that much, its the colors. The content is cool and all but the colors :D
4:59 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Nice looking, but so...corporate. :(

I liked it so much better when had the feeling Danny sat there testing and typing stuff himself. I've never gotten over the Internet.com thing...

5:03 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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The orange mouseover color is horrible on the light-blueish left nav. Otherwise the overall look is pretty good. Nothing original.
5:11 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Regarding the amount of info and ads they put on the homepage, it's comparatively clearly arranged. Colors are ok for me except highlight color. No tagline "what's the site about".

And I had to search for "search", "sitemap" and "about this site".

5:25 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I'm blown away. I really thought they could've done better. You know, they've earned a high PR... They've got great news and information. They promote legitimate and hard-earned SEO.

But the site is marketed towards corporate portal groupies. And, it pushes things like Kanoodle on the home page. With all due respect, when was the last time you USED that?

5:29 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Did anyone else spot this irony?

Top item on the SearchEngineWatch Articles list:

Monitoring Web Pages 24 Hours a Day
April 09, 2003 - If you regularly visit web pages looking for new or updated information, you'll save countless hours by automating the process with software that tracks changes for you -- even while you sleep.

2nd from top item on WebmasterWorld Top Thread list:

Blocking WebPage Monitoring Services - Most of these services are unwelcome bandwidth sponges. Lets call them out, identify them, and block them together.

Still a few philosophical differences, I guess... :)

5:45 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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HOW could the designers be happy with such a site?

Surely any major site redesign these days needs to combine XHTML and CSS as a minimum requirement?

Time to move on from the sloppy coding of the mid-1990s!

5:52 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I'm with Laisha - way too corporate. Danny's content is king, but it really gets lost (or maybe 'drowned out' is more precise) now amongst all the advertising, info. about advertising, Internet.com menus, marketplaces, buttons ... jeez, when does it end? :)

I always thought it was cool that the site looked so ... grassroots, for lack of a better word ... for so long.

To their (his?) credit, the first two of my old bookmarks that I checked are still there, but they look kinda funny with the new layout:

SE results chart [searchenginewatch.com]

Who powers whom [searchenginewatch.com]

5:54 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Agreed. It's not 1996 anymore. I just don't beleive that they get enough version 2/3 browsers visiting to justify such bloat.

Way too busy for me, DS seems like a nice chap though so I'll give it some time to see if it grows on me ;)

Nick

6:27 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Interesting Overture advert - first time I've seen that. A response to the negative stuff posted recently about Gator?

I thought Danny was against all that Overture/Gator stuff too, though...

6:29 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I like it: 8/10

positive:
- very easy to navigate
- alot of useful info

things to change:
- orange: need to be brighter
- grey on top of page; change to orange.

but dats onlee wat i tink!

mkrus

7:35 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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and in the process they lost their RSS file which used to be at [searchenginewatch.com...]
8:01 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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thought we didnt do site reviews here ;)

agree with the point about the mouseover colors - unreadable on my laptop

[edited by: benihana at 8:22 pm (utc) on April 9, 2003]

8:03 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Very nice (though I would of done some things differently). The homepage makes much more sense to me now. The familiarity and homegrown charm of the oldsite [web.archive.org] will be missed (sniff), but it's time to move on.

Now if we could just Jakob to move on :-p

[edited by: jamesa at 8:05 pm (utc) on April 9, 2003]

8:04 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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-Could tighten up the menu on the left.
-The advertising has more prominent positioning than the content. Is that necessary?

It has always been a very useful site though.

8:27 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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It is not easy to monitize a website.

Ads and content is like oil and water... they don't mix.

Great designers create ads out of content.

Captain

8:33 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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Wow! The redesign gets its own thread, cool. I've been thinking about an article on the changes, but since there's a thread going, I'll dive in and see if I can answer some questions and stuff.

First, love to hear your comments pro and con. We're still working on things. The priority has been to get all the site content imported into the new dynamic content management system. That was a huge task which the tech folks at Jupitermedia really did a great job with. There's some more formatting work that will be ongoing -- but we had well over 1,000 pages, and hand editing will only be needed for a few of them.

As a historical note, Google's simple design came out of the fact that Sergey Brin didn't know HTML. Well, same with Search Engine Watch. I know HTML, that is -- but there's a difference between coding a page and designing a page. I'm a word person, so I always kept things as simple as I could make them. Still, it's nice to finally leave 1997 and FrontPage behind and have some actual designers give the site an updated look.

The marketplace on the right hand side is new. I wonder how many firms have requested a text link when advertising. Great site, excellent PR for this industry.

Honestly couldn't tell you. I don't handle the ad side of things at all, only the editorial content. Maybe I can get one of the ad people to post about the new format. My understanding is that the marketplace is meant to help advertisers have a better presence throughout the site, rather than the former banner-oriented system.

I liked the old one better. It had a unique style and wasn't blanketed with advertising or maybe the ads weren't so prominent.

Well, it helps support the site. But for those with paid memberships, there are no third-party ads like that in the members area.

I liked it so much better when had the feeling Danny sat there testing and typing stuff himself.

It's still very much me and Chris Sherman writing articles as we always have. You'll also see me go back in once the content transition has been stablized and start reorganizing things more.

To me, that's the nicest thing about the redesign. The site has always been driven around our newsletters, since Chris and I write to those. But each newsletter has one or more original articles, and I don't think they've been highlighted enough in the past.

I did about a year ago add a "Recent Articles" column that made these more visible. But now, it's nice to be able to have titles and descriptions right on the home page.

It's sort of like when WW went to a format about a year ago (right Brett?) from showing forum threads (Google, AltaVista, etc) to instead headlined threads (Google gets contextual links, etc).

The new system also means it will be easier behind the scenes to organize some of the articles by topic. For me, that's going to be the best part of going to the new system. But first, had to get the content into it, then I get to play.

No tagline "what's the site about". And I had to search for "search", "sitemap" and "about this site".

Good to hear, at least to consider. I used to have a prominent "First Time Here?" link but dropped it as it didn't have a good place to go. I'll look at brining it back. FYI, yes, you have to hunt to find the search box. That's on purpose. There are many people who come thinking Search Engine Watch IS a search engine. Putting a big search box up there just reinforces that mistake. Instead, my first line of defense is navigational links. The hard thing is that with the old format, I could show both article headlines and "department" descriptions. At the moment, articles get the most visibility. However, in a day or two, you'll see department descriptions come back. I think it will make it much easier to find some of these thinks if you overlook the left-nav column.

The first two of my old bookmarks that I checked are still there, but they look kinda funny with the new layout: SE results chart / Who powers whom

We've done a TON of work to make all the old pages redirect to the new ones, and it's still going to be in progress all this week. The goal is that if you've bookmarked it or memorized it in the past, you should still be able to get there that way.

As for the charts, ARGH! I know. Top priority later this week to make it easier to jump down to where they show up displayed at the bottom of pages, where they can "spill out" properly. Definitely a problem with the new design.

Interesting Overture advert - first time I've seen that. A response to the negative stuff posted recently about Gator?
I thought Danny was against all that Overture/Gator stuff too, though...

Actually same style ad has been there for a year or so but in a different position. It may be more noticable now but will drop down in the left-nav next month. Also, again, I don't handle the ads, nor should you interpret an ad as an endorsement of any type, any more than you might when you see an ad in a newspaper. If I like or dislike something, I'll say so in the editorial columns independent of the ads.

and in the process they lost their RSS file which used to be at [searchenginewatch.com...]

Back by the end of the day!

Anyway, hope the comments were useful. Any more thoughts, pro or con, feel free to post or email me (direct email better than stickymail). Expect to see the bumps get worked out over the coming week.

[edited by: dannysullivan at 8:50 pm (utc) on April 9, 2003]

8:50 pm on Apr 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

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I might just be a picky *** but is there a pixel of grey/black missing from the top-bg background gif?

The line appears on the grpahic but doesn't on the tiling background.

I know it's only a little thing i am extremely anal about things like that. Or am I just missing the point?

[edited by: eelixduppy at 9:59 pm (utc) on Feb. 18, 2009]

This 51 message thread spans 2 pages: 51