Hi Everyone (Friends),

New Design:

It's been a long time coming, and long time needed. JenSocial is finally sporting a brand new look, utilizing Ning's Design Studio. Yeah, we were still using the old Ning Editor. ;-)

JenSocial Home Page

Navigation and Layout:

In addition to "Design", the navigation was cleaned up, modules removed from home page, and the layout was completely revamped.

 

Design, Navigation, Content, and Activity Goals:

  • An overall look/feel that is hopefully: Clean, fresh, professional yet fun.
  • Easy navigation with less menu tabs, less home page modules, and better module placement.
  • Great content, engaging, and easy to find the good stuff. =)
  • Consistent location of new tips, support questions, and Forum activity

 

Forum-centric:

Over the years it's been my observation that the most successful Ning Networks are Forum-centric, versus Group-centric. This observation doesn't include Ning Networks that focus on Blogs like MyModernMet.com. A lot of these sites are wildly successful, especially My Modern Met. In regards to Groups, don't get me wrong. Groups are important, and especially for premium content. But, I truly feel that open discussion is better placed in the Forum Discussion module.

Until now, all Ning Tips and Support on JenSocial were contained in special Groups. I am totally excited about the recent changes. Other than the private VIP Ning Tips, we have started the process of adding Ning Tips and Ning Support questions to the main Forum Discussions. I can already see a nice improvement in activity and clarity for Members. The older tips remain in the special Ning Tips Groupand labeled: Archives.

 

New Home Page Layout:

Left Column - Members, Search, Latest Activity, & Social Web Directory
Right Column - Everything Ning
You’ll find "Everything Ning" in the right column. Each time you visit the site, the latest "VIP Ning Tip" and the latest "Ning Tip", will be available at top of the right column. Immediately following the tips, you'll find the: Recent Forum Discussion Activity. At the bottom of right column are the archives for Ning Tips and Announcements from Ning.com.

 

Lay it on me. I'm not asking anyone to spend a lot of time critiquing, but very much welcome your thoughts. My main question is: Were the goals accomplished?

 

Thanks in advance for your time,

Jen

Tags: critique, design, good content, jensocial, new look, ning

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It's hot. 

Bernard, thanks! =)

It looks great, which reminds me I should rejoin your VIP Club   I do appreciate your Ning tips sections.  BTW, this does look odd

Doone,

Thanks! That sub-navbar is a little odd, isn't? Thanks for bringing this up. My goal was to get the archives out of the way for Members/Visitors (but still available), and making it stand out that tips and support are now in Forums. BUT, I need to work on this. Thanks again! Would love to have you in VIPs!

Best,

Jen

Try the ARCHIVES subtab in dark blue instead of white.

Good idea! Thanks. =) I'm thinking of a way to make it neater looking.

The blue tabs look nice and I think it shows what you intend to show.  Now if there were only some way I could comment on your image in a Ning comment.

Hi Atheist Universe,

I used the light blue, doesn't stand out quite as well, but the dark didn't quite look how I wanted. The js gold is the best, but on hover, funky with the same color being butted up against itself.

Thanks again,
Jen

Thanks Doone for this excellent advice. I finally updated this. It's funny how many colors I tried. I had to settle with the light blue, for now at least. I'm inserting an image above the ning support subtab, so takes longer to test colors. I removed the shifting to right, altogether.

Best Regards,

Jen

A lot better.
I think the previous homepage was overdone. It was too heavily coded and everything was so packed. The new site loads with ease and it's easier to navigate.

Troy,

Yeah, it grew into a pretty heavy beast. lol Hopefully this means my goals were accomplished, or close - - always a work in progress.

Thank you for the assessment, appreciate it. =)

Best,

Jen

clean, I'm almost where you've arrived with your network with mine! Im actually about to post a picture of my new masthead, looks ridiculously awesome! Tell me what you think when you see it Jen! Excellent job and I see you're going with more floaters as well LOL ultimately when a lot of NCs see the floaters on our site and how much space they save and how neat and clean they are, everyones gonna want them LOL I warn, DO NOT UPLOAD THAT CODE FOR FREE! It's too many sites looking exactly the same just in different colors, we need to keep certain things unique, like Jensocial ;) great job once again, I'll send the icons today! I have some free time around 3 when I do lunch LOL

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