I announced last week that I’ve partnered with Matt Chevy to do a redesign of this blog. This week, I’m sharing 3 separate posts to get your feedback and ideas about how I can make it as valuable to you as possible.  Monday’s post focused on the content; Wednesday’s post looked at fueling comments.  Today, I hope to hear which extras you prefer!

Thanks to everyone that’s shared comments so far in this process – it’s been a great experience and I am so thrilled to have such thoughtful, honest, sharing folks like YOU contributing here!

Redesign topic #3: Adding the Extras

What hides in my cupboardWhen I say extras, I mean the widgets, plugins, apps and other random bits that can really add a bit of flavor, not to mention functionality, to a website. I know that I have some that I really like and imagine you have lots of great suggestions.  So let’s hear them! I’ve broken the two areas down into some of the things I’m already using (so you can weigh in and say “keep that!” or “lose it!”) and then for everything else.  Looking forward to your ideas!

Focus: What Exists

Any of these things worth keeping? I know you’ll be honest!

  • Postalicious – this fuels the “round up” posts
  • MyBlogLog – this lives in the side bar
  • Twitoaster – this fuels the “tweet this” button on posts and replies via twitter in the comments
  • Site search
  • WordPress built-ins like recent posts, comments, etc.

Focus: Everything Else

There are so many tools out there designed to plug right into a site – what have you used or seen that you recommend adding here? And why?

Please share your responses in the comments – that way others can respond/reply to your feedback as well as leave their own. Matt and I will be both be responding, asking questions, and participating as well! Please share your ideas and feedback!

Blog Redesign: Adding the Extras
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  • Part 3 of the feedback series! Blog Redesign: Adding the Extras – let’s hear your ideas! http://amysampleward.org/2010/08/06/blog

  • Amy,

    I’d get rid of MyBlogLog and add your Facebook Page or BlogCatalog (on Facebook).

    My other thought is that because your site is about resources, maybe add a few links to Wikis that you and Beth have created.

    Finally, instead of Popular tags, try adding a category hierarchy plugin. In my experience, readers tend to prefer categories as a way to approach content throughout your entire site, but tags when looking for related posts to the one their reading once they’re deep into your site.

    In regards to categories, list them by topic, not month. When was the last time you went to a blog and asked yourself: “Hmmmm… I wonder what they published in May of 2009…”

    Make sense?


    • John – thank you so much for your feedback! I really appreciate you taking the time to share these notes.

      Consider your recommendations about MyBlogLog, Facebook, and other resources DONE!

      I really like your point about categories over dates. I also want to use two kinds of categories: content topic, but also content type (news, opinion, case study, presentation, etc.). I hope that will make it much easier for people to hit the site and say, “give me some great examples [click on case studies]” or “let’s read about best practices for community building [click on community building]” and so on.

      Everything makes sense – again, I really appreciate you sharing!

      • Amy – anytime. It really is my pleasure to help out. You’re a huge inspiration for the nonprofit world. I’m sure you already know that.

        In terms of content type (which is a great idea), you could use tags…

        • Thanks, John, for such kind words 🙂 You’re a major contributor yourself, you know!

          I was thinking today about using categories for the content types and then the tags for conference names, topics of the post and so on. Will definitely talk it over with the designer and see what we come up with – I’ll let you know how it finally gets managed from the backend perspective.

          Thank you!

  • Looking for your favorite/recommended #Wordpress extras for my blog redesign: http://amysampleward.org/2010/08/06/blog

    • WPLauraCochran

      @amyrsward can you socialize that list once you compile your favs + other favs???!! I could use it as well!

      • @WPLauraCochran but of course 🙂

        • WPLauraCochran

          @amyrsward thank you!

    • lunacatstudio

      @amyrsward You should definitely add popular posts and related posts.