The reasons behind my redesign

Following up on my previous post about my site redesign, I felt like I could dive a little bit more into my design reasons a little more.

I’ve personally been thinking about the why of design a lot more lately, so I thought sharing some of this might prove interesting. There are two major factors I kept in mind:

  1. People come via Search Engine Traffic – Search engine based traffic accounts for almost all of my traffic. On any given day, around 1% of my visits are direct or referred.
  2. My average visitor only visits one page – I have a very high bounce rate, but I’m honestly okay with that. I tend to write on one subject at a time, and if my ideal reader finds what they need and leaves, that’s cool. I’m not making money off this site.

With that information, I made the following choices:

  • Time based archives were useless – I used to have a list of my archives organized by month. That did no one any good. If a visitor is coming to learn about a topic, a set of dates is no use. So, I got rid of that list and instead now have a list of my post categories.
  • Single column, easier to focus on reading – I designed this the way I’d want something to be presented to me. One column, clear of all cruft other than the content. In the interest of keeping line lengths sane, I ended up making body copy pretty large at large viewports. Some days I feel like it’s crazy big, other days I really like my decision. For the moment I’m sticking with it.
  • Microcopy humor – being that my design was so restrained, I wanted to infuses some light humor in things like the slogan, and footer/sidebar boxes, just so people know I’m human.
  • Removed the separate “about” page and just have a blurb – why have a separate page for what could be said in a couple sentences?
  • Also removed “projects” – and just link to the Font Combinator, which is really the one thing I want people to find, anyway

I find this kind of explanation of the background decisions behind a project to be interesting, so I hope other find this interesting. I also like to to keep this blog as a bunch of notes to my future self, so it will be nice to have a concise reminder as to why I did what I did when I decided to redesign again.