• Emily Malone

The 2018 oe:gen blog redesign: a detailed look at what’s new

Updated: Jul 6, 2020

Last year, our humble little blog won a spot in the Top 50 Salesforce blogs by Feedspot, so we thought we’d give it a celebratory ‘spruce’. Here’s what’s changed, and why.

1. Sticky subscribe bar

Previously, our subscription box would disappear as the reader continued to scroll down the page. Now the bar remains visible at all times, making it less of a task for readers to sign up to our weekly blog round-up. Of course, we’re hoping this will now help to increase our number of subscribers.

2. Sticky topic filter drop-down menu

Our previous topic filtering system was cluttered, to say the least. We write about so many different topics at oe:gen, so naturally, the list started to get a little out of hand. This meant searching for a topic relevant to your interests was a bit of a nightmare. Our results on HotJar also confirmed this, as we could see that people were either not clicking these links, or simply just exiting the page. So, we’ve fixed that with a sticky drop-down menu. This draws attention to the menu, will help our readers find the topic they’re looking for much easier, and maybe even encourage them to browse our vast library of helpful content.

3. Grid-view

The list-view of our blog posts has been turned into a cleaner, more eye-catching grid-view. According to HotJar, our readers’ attentions previously dissolved as they moved further down the list, which is apparently quite common with list-view pages. Because we often read lists in sort of an ‘F’-shaped pattern, we’ll read the first two items and then glance at the other items further down the page. Grid-view, on the other hand, has been known to spread out reader attention more evenly throughout the page. 

4. Removal of side navigation

Our side navigation felt quite distracting, there was far too much information forced in there — information which could be discovered elsewhere. We also found that visitors weren’t actually clicking anything on there, meaning it really wasn’t converting well. So… we dumped it. The result is a much more clean, streamlined look and feel.

5. Featured image

The featured images now operate more like hero images — they’re no longer uploaded directly into the blog body, but within the blog post settings. Gotta be honest here, this one was for no other reason than we thought it looked a bit nicer. Previously, some blogs had differently-sized images uploaded by various authors, which was difficult to keep track of. This new setting makes sure all the featured images appear the same size on the page, no matter who uploads them. After all, consistency is key to a cleaner website.

6. Relevant articles

Our blog posts are systematically tagged based on their associated topic. So at the end of each article, we’ve pulled specific, topic-related blogs from the archives, with the aim to make our helpful content easier to discover. This should make it a little easier for Google to crawl and rank our interlinked blog posts, boost their authority, and encourage readers to engage with more relevant content on our blog.

The growth-driven design approach

But it doesn’t stop there! Our blog redesign is just the beginning. In 2018, we’re aiming to continually tweak parts of our site to see what works best for our visitors. We’ll be collecting results after about a month of the new changes being live to see if they’ve positively impacted our marketing efforts. If you like the sound of this and are thinking of doing some growth-driven design (GDD) for your own website, check out the free GDD planning template below!