Elliot Jay Stocks logo by Emma Luczyn

Want to help create the next version of elliotjaystocks.com?

Article illustration for Want to help create the next version of elliotjaystocks.com?

Back when I launched this incarnation of the site in April last year, I wrote a detailed post that included several point about how I’d aim to improve the site next time. Over the course of the last few months I’ve made several subtle modifications to enhance it, but now that I’m starting my own business and changes are needed rather than just wanted, I feel that it’s time for a ‘proper’ revision… and I’d like your help!

It’s strange… when I launched the site, I had virtually no readers; now you lot are here and for the first time ever, I’m having to design my personal site with readers in mind! It’s a daunting – but exciting – prospect, and that’s why I feel it makes perfect sense to ask you what you’d like to see. I’d love to hear your own thoughts on how the site could be improved, but to get you started, here are my basic goals:

  • Completely revamp both the design and the information architecture.
  • Have Wordpress power the entire site instead of just the blog.
  • Drastically change the ‘portfolio’ section so that there’s more of a focus on each project. This will be the biggest challenge, WP-wise, as I’d like to have each portfolio project as a post that – because of its category alone – gets pulled into the portfolio section.
  • Create a new ‘goodies’ section that contains downloadable treats like the Starkers theme and / or tutorials.
  • Include a ‘lifestream’ page to collate feeds from my Twitter / Flickr / etc. accounts.
  • Create a new ‘services’ page to serve as the business page on the site.
  • Improve the typography by using sIFR for titles.
  • Improve type usability by sizing in em instead of px .
  • Revise the information in the ‘about’ page and fill it with many more details.
  • Heavily update the content in sidebars such as ‘blogroll’.
  • Draw attention to my speaking / writing / teaching gigs, perhaps by introducing a dedicated page where resources from each can be downloaded.
  • Pull in my Flickr photos to a dedicated page. Jeff Croft does this amazingly, although I’m probably looking for something simpler; more like on subdued.net/photos
  • Create a contact page with two addresses on it: one for general enquiries and one specifically for clients. Above both, I’m going to put a prominent link to a (revised) FAQs page, asking them to read that before emailing.
  • Make a proper ‘archives’ page for the blog.
  • Pay more attention to styling forms and comments.
  • Generally improve the reader experience.
  • Make it the best site I’ve ever designed! :)

So is there anything else I should add to that list? All comments and constructive criticism will be welcome, although if there’s a feature that you absolutely love and wouldn’t want me to change, please voice your opinion about that, too! It’s over to you, my friends…