It is exactly two years since I last ran an ‘open forum’ where I opened up the comments to ideas on tweaking the site. It worked well so I thought I would try it again.
Without a huge team behind me, any changes to Head for Points will always be ‘evolution not revolution’. That said, because there are now two of us there is more flexibility. Some of the benefits of that in recent months have been:
the Christmas party, which could never have been done without a second pair of hands (the fact that I’d never done it before is proof of that)
the introduction of video to our reviews and the launch of a YouTube channel
increased review coverage, both of hotels and via press events such as the recent Cathay lounge launch
letting Anika write 95% of Shopper Points, freeing up more of my time for HFP
On the short list for improvements is:
an improved mobile site
the introduction of a Q&A page where readers can post questions which other readers can answer (this will NOT be a forum, it will be a specific Q&A page)
the reintroduction of a luxury hotel booking service (coming in January)
However, I am fully aware that there is an element of ‘snow blindness’ in what we do. After all, we look at the site every day for a considerable period of time, and we can only second-guess how you, the readers, respond to the different elements.
As we start a new year, I’d like to open up the floor to any suggestions you have about the site. Remember that I need to cater for two audiences at the same time – the regular readers and the thousands of people who come here via Google each day and who I want to convert into regular readers.
Is it clear to a newcomer what the site is about and why they should keep on reading it?
Are there too many menus at the top of the page? Too few?
Are there too many ads? (Probably not, most blogs would run ads inside posts as well, which I don’t)
Are the sidebars too confusing? Should I push the social media links more?
Should there be more ‘sticky’ information for newcomers?
Does the mix of content – which veers from Tesco deals to airline deals to credit card sign-up offers – work for you?
Is the mix of news versus ‘reference / background’ articles (eg ‘How to use Combine My Avios with Iberia’) right?
Does the current format of running a fixed number of stories at fixed times every day – with a ‘lead’ story and two less important ones below – work for you? (Most blogs just post at random times throughout the day, but I am middle-aged and grew up with the newspaper tradition!)
If there is anything about the way the site currently looks that annoys or confuses you, or if you have any ideas for improvements, please post below. You can also email me at rob [at] headforpoints.co.uk if you’d prefer.
Anything from your dislike of how I punctuate the headlines through to ideas for new ‘sticky’ pages are welcome – no idea is too small! And, to be honest, small changes are easier to implement than large changes ….
Thank you, and a Happy New Year for 2017.