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New Homepage Feedback Round 2

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June 6, 2011 2:43:25 PM

The latest version of our Tom's Hardware homepage is set to be visible in preview later this week and includes some of the feedback our users have given us after the previous iteration. We encourage everyone to review the latest design (once available) and post your feedback, comments and critiques of the new page to this thread. Bear in mind that not all feedback from the last feedback thread has been integrated yet into the design, and we will be releasing another version within 2 weeks. Please remember to keep your feedback comments clear, constructive and detailed.

Thanks!
June 7, 2011 8:38:32 PM

the new look is not very good, less mobile compatibility (and don't bring up the mobile site, it offers too little content compared to the full site to be useful)

the new layout also displays less content while taking more space.

on top of that everything is reversed, removing the autopilot ability of us to simply head to the site, direct our eyes to a specific spot and open all of the new articles and begin reading

if you want a good layout, there was one before the current one where we had the old GPU charts that allowed you to visually compare GPU and CPU performance, instead of the excel style view without the visual graphs.

bring back the old charts layout which made it easier to compare videocards and also provide better at a glance comparisons for both experienced and novice users alike.

instead of working further on the new layout, try working on bringing back one of the features of the old chart, add both the current comparison and also the filter feature which keeps this look
http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2011-gaming-graphics...

but allows you to filter out the cards that you are not interested in. the old UI allowed this, why doesn't the new one allow this
June 8, 2011 10:12:02 AM

There seems to be much more structure to the new layout, which is good. Someone decided to make most things align nicely. I think that the Featured Topics should perhaps switch places with the Vendor Voice section though. It's not very featured when it's sitting out of the way :) 

The revised forum feed makes a whole lot more sense now too. I no longer get the impression that nobody wants my opinion if there are already replies. The twitter feed is also in a seemingly less prominent position which I think befits its importance compared to "real" content.
Related resources
June 8, 2011 11:51:59 AM

If I am to make one suggestion, can we please have the latest news section in the middle of the page? As in switch it with the column on the left.
June 8, 2011 1:12:10 PM

This is much better than the last iteration.

You still don't need that "Follow Us" section at the bottom of the page. It's probably the last thing people see, and those who actually want to "follow" will use the icons at the top.

I also think that side ad should be outside the margins of the main page as a slim vertical one. Featured Topics and Charts (or just topics) would be a much better use of that space.
I still think Charts should be higher on the page, not sure where. I'm pretty sure people care more about charts than a Twitter feed.
June 8, 2011 2:08:04 PM

Definitely an improvement from v1.0. I still like being able to see all of the article subsections on the old homepage.

I agree with mayankle that the forum section should be denser with more threads/area, maybe something closer to the 'old' news section. I would also suggest the option to switch that from the most current to the most active threads.
June 8, 2011 2:31:50 PM

Like the others have stated, a definite improvement in the new page's structure. One thing that I personally liked about the "old" home page that I miss in "beta 2" is the lists of articles based on categories. I understand that many would find it just too cluttered with all those articles there as they are on the "old" page so perhaps some form of modularity could be introduced? Just a thought :) 

One thing I am not liking on "beta 2" however, is the clickable side ads. I use an adblocker but turned it off to see the "normal" layout of the page and I really don't like those style of ads. Something non-clickable that is not overly obstrusive (for example not using a black image next to the white/light grey of TH and no ads that have an alternating flash of pink and bright green in a checkboard pattern lol)

Still, it's a step in the right direction and keep up the good work TH guys :D 
June 8, 2011 4:18:51 PM

I like Beta 2 much better than Beta 1 !! Still have a little space to fill in next to the "Discover Tom's Guide Articles" column though.
June 8, 2011 5:39:04 PM

beta 2 is a little better, but why not just make these small changes to beta 2 to make it even better :) 

did a mockup of a slightly different look

June 8, 2011 5:43:04 PM

razor512 said:
beta 2 is a little better, but why not just make these small changes to beta 2 to make it even better :) 

did a mockup of a slightly different look

http://i.imgur.com/kgq1E.jpg


Nice mockup :)  But an ad format is missing there unfortunately.
June 8, 2011 5:53:52 PM

It just looks like the same elements have been re-arranged. From an aesthetic standpoint it is no different than the original. Sorry, I just don't see the point.
June 8, 2011 7:09:14 PM

I really like your layout... I would switch the charts with the articles in location but is a very nice layout...
June 8, 2011 8:23:37 PM

1. MUCH better than the 1st beta. It now has flow and structure and highlights the important stories that Tom's wants its readers to see, with the exception of the "Featured Articles" section, which if you change anything on this Beta, you should placed above the ad and "whitepapers" section, dropping them down lower.

2. I was going to criticize the lack of categories (Storage, Graphics, etc) stories until I found the drop down box located next to "Latest Articles". I just didn't notice that it was there or what it did at first. I think making it more obvious that it contains a drop down of other article types OR (and my preference) making some of links or clickable list (horizontal probably would work best) that dynamically changes the stories display by category might work better. Basically make it so that a reader can change to another category with ONE click rather than the currently needed TWO (click to drop down, click to select). That said, I am coming to like the idea of the Latest Stories section that can be changed (with ONE click) by categories.

3. I like the two alternate layouts by razor512 and dormantreign. As for Razor's lack of an ad box (a necessary evil I know) there is enough white space that it could be placed under the Vendor Stories and above the Twitter feed (which I could care less about, placing it lower is better in my opinion). I also agree with tecmo34's suggestion to switch dormantreign's placement of the charts and Latest Articles.

4. I love browsing the forum topics that are in the Forum Live Feed, but rarely comb through the forum itself. Therefore I tend to agree with the other comments that the new Forum Live Feed needs to be denser/contain more topics/questions per page.

5. I appreciate that Tom's is actually getting user feedback on a site redesign. Too many times websites will drop a radical (or even not radical) redesign on its users/readers and say live with it, we paid for it.
June 8, 2011 9:01:16 PM

Looks a little better but still no where close to the normal one.
June 8, 2011 9:08:18 PM

i like razors remake a lot. personally, i feel that the forum threads and twitter bs should be at the bottom so that they don't clutter the main area. yeah, the more i look at it, i could be happy with razor's setup. one thing though- is tom's dropping the linkage to the Torque Report? that's really one of my favs on the site. i wouldn't mind seeing it enlarged.

here's something to consider, and i don't really know how difficult it would be able to do. MSN has a personalized My MSN page, where users can select modules to display on their homepage and also set their position. i like it a lot as it allows me to put the important stuff right where i want it.
June 8, 2011 9:15:55 PM

Still don't like it. I come to Tom's for the News, which is the first thing I look for, it should be where the " latest article" section is in R2.
June 8, 2011 9:19:40 PM

For those of us running adblock or the like their is an awkward void on the right side of the page.

I agree that vendor voice needs to get swapped with featured articles, the vendor voice articles shouldnt be next to the news bits as they are really promotion for the company.

Either get rid of the live forum feed or make it live and make its name sound right, live forum feed seems better to me than forum live feed. The newest thing i see on it right now is 10 hours old, so thats pretty far from live.
June 8, 2011 11:59:31 PM

Just working with the comments here... Here is the updated version with some of the suggestions from this fourm



Uploaded with ImageShack.us
June 9, 2011 1:30:57 AM

dormantreign said:
Just working with the comments here... Here is the updated version with some of the suggestions from this fourm

]http://img29.imageshack.us/img29/2171/tomsz.png

Uploaded with ImageShack.us



This is fantastic. I really disliked the 1st beta but the 2nd beta is a substantial jump in organization. The TH page has always been kinda cluttered but good organization goes a long way. This mockup is even better and I really hope TH takes notice.
June 9, 2011 2:29:14 AM

I think second beta is much better than first beta, and I think second beta is better than the original as well. I still don't feel like this site is as aesthetically pleasing as it could be, though. Probably just needs a little bit of color to help differentiate the different sections.
June 9, 2011 2:44:33 AM

joshery420 said:
This is fantastic. I really disliked the 1st beta but the 2nd beta is a substantial jump in organization. The TH page has always been kinda cluttered but good organization goes a long way. This mockup is even better and I really hope TH takes notice.


I hope they use what is being discussed here as well. I goto toms hardware like 10 or more times a day and didn't want them to screw the new update up. Felt like i should comment and let them know what i think.

I used to goto theinquirer.net more then here but they really goofed up the design on that site and i go there like 1 time every few days. Really sad. I think that was the reason i started coming here so often. Anywho keep on posting guys, i actually like what i did with the moch up, the design on the profile thing could use a work over but i ain't getting paid to do a really good moch up. I just wanted to point the designers in what i think is the right path. There are loads of places you can place ads to pay for the site. I don't see them though thanks to ad-block. But they do have to pay the bills.

DTR
June 9, 2011 3:16:32 AM

the more i use the new beta 1 and beta 2 the more i love the original .... my 2 cents is keep the transition simple, leave the old style layout intact however remove all categories other than "feature" and "news feed" and spread them using the new beta 2 bar slider underneath the standard layout.

. _ ---
. _ ---
. _ ---
[<___>]

hope my drawing makes any sense.
June 9, 2011 7:13:17 AM

Better but still much worse then the old style.

Id change the news part back to the old font size as the font being bigger actually seems to make it more annoying to look through. I dont get to see as many news links on the page when it loads and the main reasons I go to this site is news links and articles. Articles becoming a row at the top is nice and I like that about the new page, but you are screwing up the news section making the font so large and requiring so much scrolling.

I would take the forum section and cut the width in half and place it as a middle column where Toms guide and Vendors Voice is now, then id place Toms Guide and VV as the right column. So a 3 column layout with News (in a font small enough to get at least 20 storys viewed without scolling), Forum, and Toms G + VV. Then Below those 3 id do Featured Topics, Twitter, and Charts.

Or just leave the site the way it is now. It is really really good.

June 9, 2011 1:11:04 PM

I like this one better than the first. The farther down the page the Twit section gets the better.
June 9, 2011 2:33:24 PM

Thanks for the great feedback, friends! Keep it comin'!
June 9, 2011 3:20:12 PM

Folks need to understand that cramming as much stuff as possible onto a web page isn't always beneficial....having clean lines and organization is a huge must. You can always provide some basic navigation to other links, but your home page should always be as inviting, informative and clean to everyone, of every tech range.
June 9, 2011 4:21:05 PM

i still prefer the original one because i can see all the recent articles from all the categories without even having to go through that dropdown menu
and because there are more news displayed at a single time

also, the original site has dropdown menus for the charts(graphic cards, harddrives and processors) while this one doesn't. makes it a little less convenient imo


but really, why do you guys have to change the layout? current one is good as it is
June 9, 2011 4:26:01 PM

Yup... Still lacks the categories below. The ones that show the most recent articles for each category. :-)

Is this an attempt though to reduce the amount of loading for the main page? Maybe you should still provide links to pages that show those lists of categories. :-)
June 9, 2011 4:28:41 PM

Also, I don't think that the regular "Deals" like this "Deals June 8: GeForce GTX 460 + 2 Games $99" don't belong in the News section, but in a category of their own. Just my opinion though. :-D
June 9, 2011 4:34:52 PM

I like the 'Round 2' home page the best. Lots of information but it does not appear cluttered. :) 

Please resist the urge to add 'page shifting' advertisements. You know, the ones that push the entire contents of a page down to make room for an annoying comercial. Then the page is shifted up after the commercial ends.
June 9, 2011 5:43:46 PM

Dormantreign is on the right track. The 3 main reasons I come to Tom's Hardware, would be Latest News, Latest Articles, and the Forum Feed, in that order.

1. I don't think the News Feed needs to be 2 columns wide, but it should be 16-18 entries long.
2. Forum Feed is awesome, and having a quick "Ask Question" button is GREAT.
3. Dormantreign's horizontal articles item is great, left/right buttons and categories drop-down should all be animated and clear/simple to use. Please don't make it move on its own, or have a mousover scroll function.
4. A full spread of 9 icons for the charts entry is totally cool. Great opportunity for some refreshed artwork.
5. Ads...well, a banner ad across the top doesn't have a huge impact, but a side one sure throws off the formatting. Maybe try it with 2 banner ads, or something. Most of the tech-oriented people on this site not only run adblock, but also ALREADY KNOW about the content of the ads. (I.e. yes, we know about ultra durable 3) Place them where you need to I guess.
June 9, 2011 6:40:33 PM

Still not liking it.
I preferred personally the articles in the dead center.
That's why I come to toms, that and the forums.

XD
June 9, 2011 9:16:44 PM

Yeah i agree Articles do need to be dead center. Hence my latest design, I also shrunk the latest articles section and added the "ADS" a couple guys were nagging me for. To put space in for.

For real now, this is the last one i'm doing. hehe.



Uploaded with ImageShack.us


One of the key things why i did this revision is that the latest news felt wrong in its place in my last moch up. I think this design should make "Most" everyone happy and give us more of what we want. okay...done. I'm really glad they had this beta stage, i think the purpose of it was not to piss anyone off with a radical new design. I also think this moch up should work well with moble phones. I read a post back a few that said that cramming to much info was a bad thing and i think i found a balance with this one.

DTR
June 9, 2011 9:24:03 PM

Beta 2 is so much better than Beta 1, but I think dormantreign's set-up is the way to go.
June 10, 2011 12:19:43 AM

Wall of text alert! Also, I have too many opinions for my own good : )

Beta 2 is a great improvement over Beta 1, but I agree that there is some work to be done still. The most recent mockup above would be a good layout. Part of what I think Tom's needs to consider is the screen resolution. If they're keeping the width optimized for 1024*768, the height should be as well. Having a banner ad under the searchbox - like there has been on all of the iterations so far - really cuts into the 768 pixels of vertical space. For those of us who spend a lot of time doing web browsing on computers with 768 or 800 px of vertical space, that's what really counts. The current layout allows me to see 3 articles and 12-16 news stories from the top of the home page in 768px of height (not counting the browser window and the XP taskbar). Beta 1 actually let me see more news and articles, but if I scrolled down I wanted to stab myself in the eyeball. With Beta 2, I can see at most 6 stories, but 6 articles at my fingertips. That's not really balanced compared to the pace that the two sections move at.

Now, the only improvement I see having been made to the original homepage was in the top <768 pixels of Beta 1. What I'd change about that is to remove the banner ad, and put the forum feed in where featured topics was - and move the 'ask a question' button to the top. Alternatively, the original layout could remain, with some consolidation of the stuff down below, and the forum feed could be where 'topics' and the square ad is - keeping the banner ad at the top, and pushing the square ad down.

Although the overall impression of Beta 2 is better, the first impression of Beta 1 is cleaner. The current default combines the best of both, but is missing the forum feed.
June 10, 2011 2:30:11 AM

I was one of the guys that hated the Beta 1 layout. The Beta 2 layout is definitely improved and I also like some of dormantreign's ideas. I like that the Beta 2 look is cleaner with more apparent whitespace and flow. I personally can't stand twitter feeds and even most of the forum feeds don't interest me so the farther down the page they are, the better. I also don't believe I have ever read one of the "White Papers and Resources" and would put that further down the page if you have it at all. Maybe switch "White Papers" with Featured Topics so that you have Articles, News and Topics near the top. I imagine that is what most people come to Tom's for anyway.

I still would like to see you reduce the height of the header at the top. Surely you can figure out a way to make it smaller. Basically the logo, the main tabs and a search bar with login. Do we really need all the mobile, RSS, subscribe to newsletter, twitter and facebook stuff at the top? Things like Tom's Guide, Tom's Games, etc. could also be a tab with links on that page to all of Tom's other sites. They just don't need to be the very first thing on the page every time I go to the site.

Last thought - Is it possible if this is being done in CSS to simply have a couple of choices kind of like you are doing currently with Old, Beta 1 and Beta 2? That way, everyone gets the layout they like and could save their own preference. If you wanted to get fancy, you could even create some sort of mashup editor that would allow each of us to design our own layout and save it as a template. Probably a pipe dream but it wouldn't be that hard to at least do the multiple layout CSS choice idea.

Thanks and keep up the good work.
June 10, 2011 2:31:14 AM

jpishgar said:
The latest version of our Tom's Hardware homepage is set to be visible in preview later this week and includes some of the feedback our users have given us after the previous iteration. We encourage everyone to review the latest design (once available) and post your feedback, comments and critiques of the new page to this thread. Bear in mind that not all feedback from the last feedback thread has been integrated yet into the design, and we will be releasing another version within 2 weeks. Please remember to keep your feedback comments clear, constructive and detailed.

Thanks!



I still like the "old" version much better.
don't understand why shuffle things around and called "new".
June 10, 2011 3:31:25 AM

jpishgar said:
The latest version of our Tom's Hardware homepage is set to be visible in preview later this week and includes some of the feedback our users have given us after the previous iteration. We encourage everyone to review the latest design (once available) and post your feedback, comments and critiques of the new page to this thread. Bear in mind that not all feedback from the last feedback thread has been integrated yet into the design, and we will be releasing another version within 2 weeks. Please remember to keep your feedback comments clear, constructive and detailed.

Thanks!


This is a huge improvement over the Beta 1. It makes great use of space. The one change I would suggest is to move the band of 6 latest articles at the top of the page lower. The information that draws people back repeatedly is the news, guides, reviews, etc. That band is not an efficient use of space and makes scroll down to get to the meat of TH. Either move it shrink it or discard it--otherwise well done!
June 10, 2011 3:16:26 PM

Not bad... Not bad at all...
June 10, 2011 3:36:49 PM

this version is better than the original beta (not so busy) but you still have not added the torque report to this new version

June 10, 2011 4:22:18 PM

For the love of God, please make News links open in a new tab. It's bloody annoying to do this manually.
June 10, 2011 4:42:55 PM

I like it much better. However, @dormantreign has the best layout i've seen. It's got it all right there!

The other thing I notice is beta2 loads much faster than beta1. Might just be me.

I like the live forum feed. However, it's not actually "live".
June 10, 2011 5:55:34 PM

The current page works just fine. Unless you're planning a major overhaul (graphics as well as layout), then just leave it alone.
June 10, 2011 7:02:41 PM

daniel123244 said:
If I am to make one suggestion, can we please have the latest news section in the middle of the page? As in switch it with the column on the left.


+1, That is where my eye wants to go. Also, widen the headline columns a bit in this area.
June 11, 2011 2:49:33 AM

First impression was, "Where did everything go?!"

I prefer the old webpage as it contains all the major subsections and its latest titles. I can simply scroll down and look for info without having to click & wait. Sure, the new webpage looks cleaner & neater, but at the expense of losing all the information, I'd rather not.

Good effort, anyway! ;) 
June 11, 2011 9:01:40 AM

i love the layout that dormantrein put together in his last post. good job man
June 11, 2011 10:01:08 AM

+1000 for dormantreign's last design.

The three main reasons I visit Tom's Hardware are Latest Articles, Latest News and Forum Feed in this order. dormantreign's last design is exactly what I want to see.

Good job dormantreign!
!