An annual magazine website redesign allows publishers to make the necessary structural and user experience changes to the publication website expected by readers and advertisers. The magazine web redesign does not mean that the magazine website content management system (CMS) must be replaced but it’s a good time to confirm basic updates have been performed or consider a magazine CMS upgrade.
For the web redesign, this process includes adoption of the latest design trends (yes, it’s time to change that glassy web 2.0 feel) and even re-position social media connectors or access to the digital brand elements of the magazine. For most publishers the top relevant social platforms now are Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest, with the addition of LinkedIn buttons for all b2b publications. These social platforms are so prevalent that the generic share or add buttons linking to dozens of other social platforms are often additional clutter. The exception is when the publisher utilizes the ‘sharethis’ or ‘addthis’ for additional simple email or read-later function.
Advertising adjustments are always in order and with the new IAB ad units you probably want to add or update your banner advertising dimensions. See new ad units here: http://www.iab.net/guidelines/508676/508767/displayguidelines. The 970×90 Pushdown is very popular and sits below your main website navigation.
Taxonomy and navigation structures are also often updated during the redesign and emphasize the importance to develop the new design with a methodical process. Are you positioning your website navigation based upon functional channels like news, video, blog, or are you taking a topic based navigation for editorial or search optimization. We enjoy this part of our service and our design presentation mocks flow from a collaborative wireframe strategy which is unique for every magazine brand.
The magazine CMS should be easy to use for publishing daily content to your audience. Some publishers may still be working with a static HTML page update process or legacy publisher CMS. Older magazine web content management software may be a candidate for a simple upgrade to a modern publishing platform. Both web/cloud based magazine CMS and open source magazine CMS software can often be populated based on a database import from older software. Taxonomy and image asset handling are the more challenging issues for migration, but are often worth doing right to preserve content value.
Here’s some screenshots of the Drupal publishing CMS. Both Joomla, WordPress, and modern cloud based magazine cms platforms have similar foundational publisher website management features allowing simple article and news publishing.
CMS Modules Drive Features and Functions of Website
Publisher CMS Content Types Allow Specific Fields and Functions By Content Type (News, Events, Videos)
Publishing CMS Article Entry is a Web Based WYSIWYG Editor for Text and Image Entry
The magazine redesign should produce results in the following 3 categories:
1) Audience Usability and Style Presentation Improvement
2) Magazine Advertiser Value / Digital Inventory Improvement
3) Publisher Website Management Workflows / Ease of Updates and Social Content Facilitation