I think we’re finally on the proper track with our content entry system redesign. Today we had a wireframe preview for a group of publishers in our headquarters. They were unusually pleased with what we showed them – definitely a good sign.
The system ended up being designed pretty much by us – mostly by our Web Systems Manager, with some input by me. The outsourcing company did a lot of the leg work, but the overall architecture and layout is ours. The biggest problem with Vignette v7 is that it divides content into the content side – where you input everything and the site side – which is how it is displayed on the website. This is very difficult to navigate for end users when all they want to do is enter content and have it published to the website.
To simply things for our editors, the interface that we designed is as simple as possible – focused entirely on entering content. Minor pieces of content, such as authors, images and links can be entered inline while entering an article – no more having to enter everything necessary to enter an article first. The system has the flexibility to allow the editors to enter/edit/delete minor content by itself if they want to, but everything is based upon our major types of content – articles, showrooms, classified ads, industry links, etc.
Publishing, unpublishing, deleting, editing and creating new content is all driven from the home page, which simply has few action buttons. Finding a piece of content is fascilitated using a search box and a set of filters. Editors can publish, unpublish, and delete multiple pieces of content simply by checking their box and hitting the appropriate action button (with an ‘are you sure’ dialog, of course).
The editor interface is greatly simplified but gives them all the flexibility of Vignette v7. For our designers and site administrators, they have access to everything they had before – except again we got rid of the site versus content system. They have multiple ways to find content, but everything in the system is geared towards where it is on the site.
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