The new site has been running for about 6 weeks now, and despite my creative temperament of not liking anything I’ve created, I’m really happy with how it’s working out.
I’ve been doing a serious amount of under-the-hood tuning to improve the experience, largely making the whole thing faster. For those that care, GTmetrix now gives a PageSpeed/YSlow rating of 95/83, with A grades across the board for PageSpeed. The only down marks are for external sources, at this point Google fonts, Disqus, and WordPress stats. Being external, I have no control over how those are handled… well not without some serious under- the-hood hackery.
The one thing I liked but removed was the Instagram feed. Making the call to their server and receiving the images back was quite a drain on load times. It wasn’t that popular anyway. Experience shows that traffic tends to come in from social media, not go out to it.
So I’ve stopped playing the speed numbers game, and want to improve the user experience. The great thing is that I haven’t got a single complaint. While I was messing with caching, the site often looked like total arse. But that’s all settled down now.
The first real addition is the feed. Well it’s always been there, but I haven’t publicised it. I just had to tweak it so that the short link stories didn’t appear in the main feed. But you can grab those in their own feed here, and via the RSS icon next to the page titles.
There will be more changes as time goes on. I’ll doubtlessly add things, tweaks things, and plain delete things too. And to help with this, I have some…
Social share buttons
You probably didn’t realise, but there haven’t been any social share icons on DJWORX for something like three years. Online research shows that nobody shares on mobile, and that despite having handy buttons, people generally copy and paste links into their social platforms on desktop in preference to using buttons.
Q. If we added social share buttons, would you use them?
While we have the most engaged community around, the comments section is restricted to the topic at hand. So the idea of a forum to get into subjects that we don’t cover in the news posts makes perfect sense.
There have been many DJ forums, including the skratchlounge that I ran for 11 or so years before it reached a natural end. So rather than run what might be little more than a traffic trap, I want to be sure that it’s a solid addition to DJWORX and a makes a valid contribution to the scene too.
It needs to be different to the usual fodder, but at this point I’m not sure how that would work. There has been discussion internally about having no sub-forums at all, and just running a single section where the most popular stays at the top. But it would have a solid search feature, so if you were looking for something specific, it should be easy to find.
Q. If we added a forum, would you use it? And if so, what kind of features would you like it to have?
We could type words into a basic HMTL pages with zero frippery attached. But we want your experience to be as pleasing as possible on every level. Obviously things changed quite considerably from the old to the new version, and I’m looking at the links people click to see what works and what doesn’t, hence ditching the Instagram feed.
Q. How do you feel about the new DJWORX site? Are there things that annoy you, or does it deliver in a way that makes you blissfully happy? Importantly, what would you like to see?
Remember, we’re looking for solid constructive feedback, good or bad, so that we can build a site that works for our already splendid community. We might not implement everything you ask, but we’ll definitely discuss it with you. But if you don’t ask, then we can’t look at your ideas it at all.
So… feedback in 5… 4…3….