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    Designing A New Website!

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    Paeter
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    Designing A New Website!

    Post  Paeter on February 13th 2012, 10:20 pm

    Hey everybody,

    After some crazy stuff that happened recently with my podcast hosting, the time has never seemed more clear to start working on a redesign of our main website. (The connection between the two being that I will eventually host the podcast on the new site instead of Libsyn.)

    I had a phone meeting with my "tech guy" on Friday and he gave me an outline of what we could do to improve everyone's experience with our site and how much it will cost.

    He's giving me a fantastic deal, but with Spirit Blade 3 prepping for production and the costs associated with it still not crystal clear, we'll likely need to proceed slowly in phases on the website.

    In the next couple of weeks I'll be meeting with my designer to talk about the basics of the new site, so movement is already starting and I'll try to keep you all updated.

    In fact, I hope to present some of what we talk about with you guys to get your feedback. While it won't be possible to please everybody, I'm hoping the new site will be something YOU guys like. (Otherwise, what's the point, right?)

    I'm also considering a Kick-starter event and have already started dreaming up some cool and unique rewards for getting involved. More on that soon.

    Anyway, I'm planning to use this thread as the main point of interaction with you guys regarding the new website design, so check back here often and leave any thoughts you might have. I know some of you have some great ideas, and I'd love to hear them! (I'd love to hear the bad ideas, too, for that matter!)

    Both my tech guy and designer are really excited about working on this project and I'm excited to see it get started! Stay tuned for more soon!


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    Hackmodford
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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  Hackmodford on February 13th 2012, 10:27 pm

    NO FLASH (except youtube vids I guess...)

    Compatible with mobile phones.

    That's my only suggestions Wink

    While you're working on the website see if you can setup forums.spiritblade.net to direct to this site so that we can brand the forums better. (have the tech get ahold of me and I can get it working with his help)


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    Paeter
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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  Paeter on February 13th 2012, 10:57 pm

    Hackmodford wrote:NO FLASH (except youtube vids I guess...)

    Compatible with mobile phones.

    Already had those in my initial notes for them and those items are both being considered "givens", so we're good! I'll try to get the forum thing done, too.

    Thanks!


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    mindspike
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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  mindspike on February 14th 2012, 1:03 am

    Host the blogs and podcast feeds from the main site instead of from secondary sites. Not only will this unify the look, feel, and access of your site, but the RSS feeds will massively improve your SEO and result in more hits and a better search engine ranking.


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    Hackmodford
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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  Hackmodford on February 14th 2012, 10:07 am

    +1 mindspike


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    WhiteBoy
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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  WhiteBoy on February 14th 2012, 5:20 pm

    WordPress should be able to handle all your blogging and podcasting needs. I checked on several blogging web softwares and decided on this one. One nice thing is that WordPress is "built in" to many hosting providers where all you have to do is "check the box" that you want it installed, and it automatically installs. I've then added several plugins to WordPress to give some of the functionality mentioned here.


    • Blueberry PowerPress - streamlines the "podcasting" part of the blog. Even has flash and non-flash media players so people can listen to the post cast directly from the web site if they prefer. I chose an HTML5 media player if their browser supports it, otherwise it falls back to a Flash media player.
    • All in One SEO Pack
    • Contact form - nice "contact us" form
    • Google Analytics - haven't used this one much yet, but it lets you hook in to a Google account and get some detailed stats about your site.
    • Sharebar - adds a bar on the side of the post where people can "Like" it, tweet it, +1 it, etc.
    • Wordpress Database backup - easily backup your blog before doing an upgrade, or whatever. You can schedule it to email you backups or put them on a ftp server if you prefer.
    • WPTouch - takes the site and make it instantly mobile-friendly. Very sweet!
    • I don't do this right now, but you can set different posts as different categories (right now I only have one category on mine..."Sermons"). Listeners can subscribe to the categories individually or the whole blog.


    It's not a shining example by any means, but if you want to see the one I setup for our church's podcast you can see it here - http://www.oakcliffbaptist.com/wordpress .

    I would think you could get your web design guys to make you a custom Spirit Blade theme for WordPress and make it seamlessly integrate in with your main web site. Or ...*possibly* even ONLY use WordPress for your entire web site using the WordPress "pages" section. I've played around with this just a little, but it lets you create pages, sub-pages, and so forth. I can give you a tour of mine if you want.


    Last edited by WhiteBoy on February 14th 2012, 5:23 pm; edited 2 times in total


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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  Hackmodford on February 14th 2012, 5:22 pm

    You had a dead link so I fixed it for you... your welcome Very Happy


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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  WhiteBoy on February 14th 2012, 5:24 pm

    Heh.. thank you. Smile


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    Paeter
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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  Paeter on February 15th 2012, 12:00 am

    mindspike wrote:Host the blogs and podcast feeds from the main site instead of from secondary sites. Not only will this unify the look, feel, and access of your site, but the RSS feeds will massively improve your SEO and result in more hits and a better search engine ranking.

    You've been reading my journal again! Already on the agenda, though it may not happen right away when the new site launches. ASAP, though!

    Thanks!


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    Paeter
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    Re: Designing A New Website!

    Post  Paeter on February 15th 2012, 12:03 am

    Thanks for all the great info, WhiteBoy! I'll be sure to pass it along and throw it on the table in my planning sessions with my "tech guy" and designer!


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