A closer look at the WPCandy site and logo redesign

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This week sees the relaunch of WPCandy, with a new design, fresh content, and a new vision. It has been great to see the response so far.

All week we’ll be posting about the launch, offering some information on where the site is going, and running a couple of giveaways. You can follow the launch posts at the v4 launch tag.

Today, we’re going to take a look at the new design, particularly why it works the way it does. The logo, layout, navigation, and even geeky permalink stories lurk below the jump.

A refreshed logo

First of all, the WPCandy logo has been redesigned, with an awesome photo-real mint. For comparison, and for those that forget, take a look at the two logos side by side:

The old logo is on the left, the new one on the right. But do I really need to point that out?

Thanks to logo designer Inderpal Virdi for the awesome work on the new logo.

Simple blog layout

The last version of WPCandy was great in a lot of ways — but one thing that was difficult was finding the day’s latest posts.

With the new design, every effort was made to be sure it’s always clear what’s new, and where to find important content. New posts are always front and center, with featured posts at the top.

This may or may not be a useful indication of clarity, but here you can see the old site (left) and the new site (right) blurred to the same degree. The new design is more visually clear.

New navigation

Category and content navigation next to JD Bentley's latest post.

Along with the new design—or rather, at the heart of the new design—came a reorginization of the content, and a new navigation system. Now you can filter all content by its type: news, opinion, tutorials, and so on. Also by topic, like themes, Plugins, and multisite.

The same kind of navigation can be seen next to each post—content type, followed by topics in blue.

Geeky URLs-as-sentences

While we’re on the navigation, WPCandy now has a new approach to URLs: URLs as sentences.

Every URL on the site now reads as a simple sentence. News stories read “WPCandy reports” followed by the slug, and opinion pieces read “WPCandy thinks” followed by the slug. Again, this is a super geeky addition to the site, but we think it adds a little something fun.

Hat tip: If you would like to read more about URLs as sentences, a great writeup by Chris Shiflett goes over the basics. This is where I learned about it, and have since tried implementing it as much as possible. Thanks Chris!

If you’d like to implement URLs as sentences on your own site, see WPCandy’s guide on setting up URLs as sentences within WordPress.

A cleaner, more transparent experience

And finally, a few things were added to make the site better and more transparent.

First, there are no longer any ads on WPCandy. No pixels in the sidebar, or anywhere else for that matter, but our own.

Posts also have two new features. Source links and post revisions can be found at the bottom of each post. Source links are self explanatory: they let you know where we learned what we’re posting about.

The post revisions are a little more exciting, to me. Any changes made to posts, after they are published, are shown here in a box underneath the post.

Think of this as the web version of a retraction; any time posts are updated you will get a link that shows you what was changed.

Hat tip: WPCandy is using a relatively new Plugin for this feature called Post Revision Display, by Scott Carpenter. Thanks Scott!

Now, for the real work

I hope you enjoy version four of WPCandy. It has been fun to work on the new site, but I’m more excited to actually be publishing stories, tutorials, and—well, I don’t want to spoil any surprises.

Please ask any other questions you have in the comments, and if you want to stroke this humble designer’s ego, feel free to do so as well.

2 thoughts on “A closer look at the WPCandy site and logo redesign

  1. Great insight into the new WPCandy.com Ryan, thanks!

    When I first checked out the new site I was really intrigued with the Post Revisions on show, I thought that was great, and would have eventually got around to asking how you guys did it? — Now I know! 🙂

    And as for those URLs, well yeah, I suppose they are fun (and different!)

  2. I love the URL scheme and would love to hear how this is done. I can think of a few ways but none of them sound very maintainable or fun to do.

    A plugin or any tips would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Daniel Hardy

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