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New website design ... confusing?

#1

Hi,

(It’s starting good … I can’t even find the right place in the forum for this).

So, about the new design of RW.com (I know, it’s already been few months), am I the only one to find it extremely confusing to navigate? Or am I just getting too old to understand this FB/Snapchat-like design with nice large cards but completely out of order and context???

Even going to the “What’s new” page, I’m unsure if all the content is there, what’s an article or a video, or even how to go to it without landing back to the main screen first. I really miss the old blog-style list, that made much more sense (for me at least).

I had really to look for the forums until I finally found the link in the footer.

My content page is a simple table view with fancy icons and book titles. It used to a much more functional grid with book versions and even the possibility to launch a download right from that page (in case a book has been updated, with a “new” tag) … Now? I have to open one tab by book and scroll down to check the version and compare it with what I have. This is awfully slow when we own most of the books on the site.

I understand it took you so long to develop the new design, and you must be proud of it and all … but is there a way to revert to a more “old” theme or version?

Thanks.

5 Likes
#2

Hi einharch,

Thanks for getting in touch. I wanted to give you some tips on getting the most from our website since the redesign.

Accessing all tutorials:

The library https://www.raywenderlich.com/library contains everything on raywenderlich.com in a searchable and filterable format. It’s default sort order is to show everything that’s new (that’s why the What’s New section links here). You can access the library from the site header. Access the dropdown menu from ‘Explore’ and click the green button ‘Explore all of raywenderlich.com’.

Our goal with this library design was to replicate the behaviour of the old site so that users can easily browse all our content in a list format with additional controls to search and filter. We felt that this design would make it easier to browse our new content and then switch between platforms, video courses, screencasts and articles easily. Maybe this isn’t clear and we need to improve the presentation and discoverability of this page as you’ve highlighted it’s difficult to find.

Type of content:

We have a label on every piece of content to say if it’s an article, screencast or video course. You can see that label underneath the title after the date. This could be clearer to the user, so expect to see an improvement to this soon.

Owned Products:

We redesigned our store https://store.raywenderlich.com/ to include a ‘My Products’ tab (you must be signed in). From there you can download the latest version of each product using the green button in the right hand corner without accessing the product page. And when a product has been updated a label will appear in the left hand corner to indicate there’s a new version available.

Please let me know if you find these tips helpful. I’m curious to understand the difference between the new library blog style list and the old site style blog list. Can you tell me why that old list was so easy to use?

3 Likes
#3

I have to agree with [einharch that the new site is not user friendly… I found the previous design much earlier/pleasant to use than the “new Design”.

#4

@earmand Please let us know when you get a chance why do you find the new version of the website difficult to use. Thank you!

#6

I agree with what is being said, I like the search and filter features, but there is no clear path to follow, it’s unclear what courses to watch after each other. I know you have a path to follow but it’s basic, it shows maybe 10 - 12 course to follow and then neglects the rest.

Talking about courses as you are now increasing your library content wouldn’t it be clear to mark your content be relevance? Your newer course are 100% Relevant but something that was written/ recorded 5 years ago maybe not be. I just feel you keep the older content around just to make it look like you have a much greater choice, but feel all your doing is slowing down the learner by having out of date content, grated it’s good for older code you may come across, but shouldn’t it be marked as Legacy?

#7

The old website had a good overview about new content/tutorial right at the beginning … this is what I miss most.

1 Like
#8

I agree that the old layout was easier to navigate, at least for video content.

There was a single page for all of the subscriber video content, courses separated by category, that I could browse to see what I’m paying for. Now it’s all mixed in with tutorials and articles and everything looks more or less the same at the top level. The filtering system when I use ‘Explore’ works but can’t be used to isolate the video content that I am used to. Even if it could, the results now appear in a single-column list which takes longer to get through.

I’m sure all the same great content is on here, it’s just a lot harder for me to find it compared to the old videos page.

#9

@lazyaugust @uidaniel @terryatkins @earmand @einharch

Thank you all for your detailed feedback. It’s really appreciated. Making the site user friendly is a goal of the entire team and it dismays us to hear you’re having issues finding content. The common themes here appear to be a confusing navigation and the grouping/display of content. We’ll take a closer look at these so expect to see improvements in the next release.

#10

I am new here so I can’t comment on the “old” design. I am still a little all over the place in my Swift education. I am tacking on new things while reviewing some of the more basic stuff to mine it for tricks/info I might have missed (or forgotten) on my first run. I have figured out how to quickly get back to previously watched video but it wasn’t immediately intuitive. No big deal but I thought I would mention it.

What I really don’t like is the forums link buried in the footer. I always assume that sites that do that really don’t want much traffic on their message boards. What do I know though? I am new.

#11

@beesknees Can you tell me how you figured out how to get back to your most recently watched video?

#12

As long as I have something I still want to see again in a group that is still in progress I can get to it “faster” from the homepage by scrolling down.

Otherwise I have been going the long way around:
Paths -> IOS & Swift for Beginners-> Programming in Swift -> Scroll until I find what I want to review again.

Other people may not learn the same way I do so it may not be as important for others to see a video more than once. I find that I get a lot from initial exposure but I am not going get it all (or at least a lot more) until I spend some time coding. I think learning a new language is all about the ABC… Always Be Coding. However, to make my code evolve more quickly through the stages from ugly to glorious (or much less ugly) I have to spend time learning or relearning.

#13

@beesknees Can you send me a screenshot of where you scroll down to on the homepage?

#14

Ok. But I feel kind of silly doing it.

That only works, of course, as long as I leave something in progress. Otherwise I have to jump through more hoops.

#15

@beesknees Ok thanks, I understand the problem clearer now. Would a bookmarking feature help?

#16

It would probably help some people. I really don’t want anymore new bookmarks right now. In the last six weeks I have already added over 60 related to ‘beginner’ Swift education and that is almost all just for coding. I haven’t spent much time with the storyboard yet. The app I am working on is very heavy on algorithms and database functions so it exists primarily in PGs at the moment.

#20

But in my opinion, the developers and designers are great! All sites and forums will look like this in the future!