Software user experience design (UX) that stands still is actually moving backwards as the world around it evolves. That applies to apps and webpages, including blogs.
Backblaze’s blog launched in 2008 with a short post by our founder, Gleb Budman, about how a billion PCs are at risk of losing data. Since that first blog post, Backblaze has published 800 more posts. Last year we had over 2.6 million pageviews from an audience that continues to grow month over month.
The blog was updated in 2014 with a responsive design to serve our increasing number of mobile-based readers, new categories, a new commenting system (Disqus), and the ability to sign up for a blog email list. We improved our site search function in 2017.
We’ve been feeling for a while that the blog is overdue for more improvements. We want to expose more of the content we’ve created to more readers and help readers find what interests them from among those hundreds of posts. Searching for content can work, but readers have to know or guess a search term to find out if we’ve written on that topic. That’s not good.
Like Needles in a Haystack
As the blog gets more and more posts, the challenge gets even harder to help readers find all the content on the blog that would interest them. Most of our readers come to the blog through organic search, but many are returning readers who are checking on what’s new, or perhaps they learned of a post that interests them through one of our newsletters. Another option is that a reader signed up for our blog mailing list (see the top of this page to sign up) and received an email about a post that sounds interesting.
For the next iteration of our blog, we had a short list of goals we wanted to achieve.
These Are the Goals for Our Blog Update
- Present a friendlier user interface
- Make it easier for the reader to find content related to what they’re reading
- Introduce the reader to content they might not know we wrote about
- Make everything work faster
We hope the new design fulfills these goals, and we invite you — once the new design has launched — to tell us how we did. We made the design much more flexible so if it turns out that something doesn’t work as well as we hoped, or we get great suggestions from our readers, we can easily change the blog to incorporate those ideas.
We’re putting the finishing touches on the new design, so it won’t be long until it’s live. After it’s launched, we’ll write more about what we changed, and why.
We’re looking forward to showing the latest version of our blog to our readers. Stay tuned!