July 15, 2015

My Brand New Website

My son Tom works in advertising in NY City, and a few months ago, he let me know that he thought my website was old fashioned, hard to navigate, and it didn't do a good job of representing the quality of my work or my professionalism. It didn't take long for him to convince me that he was right, but I was intimidated by the size of the task required to build a new site. Tom then pointed me to SquareSpace, which I had heard of very often because they sponsor many of the public radio shows and podcasts that I listen to. SquareSpace allows people to build a very attractive and sophisticated website through a web browser, rather than with dedicated software packages that can be very hard to learn. SquareSpace provides some super templates to start with, and they are extremely customizable. And they have terrific customer service, 24/7. I am very impressed with this operation.

The thing that really got me going on this project is that Tom also offered to help me build the site, and he got the ball rolling by creating a first draft on SquareSpace. I immediately liked where he was heading with this, and got excited enough to start participating more actively. It became a very fun and creative collaboration, and SquareSpace makes it easy for both of us to keep making changes from our geographically different locations. Ideas bounced back and forth and improvements were constant.

A month ago, the site was ready enough for "prime time" and I took down my old site and replaced it with the new one. Since then, Tom and I have continued to tweak the functionality and aesthetics of the pages, and with SquareSpace, it really is easy to keep that work going. The improvements at this point will be more incremental. But it is very clear to me that the new site is working very well in all ways. With SquareSpace, I get a lot of information (aka "metrics") about how many people go to my site, and what pages they view. In the four weeks since the site launched, I have had 530 visitors and they have viewed an average of three pages each. That means this has been worth the effort. And I feel sure that many of the visitors are having a good experience on the site. I would very much love to hear back from any and all about their visits to my website. It will get better and better if you help me understand what you want to see there.

I also have a brand new logo, which was made with the help of one of Tom's good friends, Jeff Chandler. That creative process was a remarkable collaboration, and it deserves a blog post all to itself. I hope to write that soon. The new logo shows below at the top of all my web pages.

Here is a snapshot of the new homepage of my site, and after that, what my old site looked like.

The Old Website

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