April 15, 2014

As you’ve probably noticed by now we’ve made a pretty big change to our website. Junior has been hard at work on this project for a while, planning it out behind the scenes and figuring out how to improve the site for our customers and other visitors. A while back we realized our old website had basically stayed the same since the fall of 2009, and five years seemed like a long time especially on the web. As a heads up, we still have a few things that we’re putting the finishing touches on and which won’t be fully operational for another brief stretch. Some things can’t yet be clicked on, for example, though we’ll be fixing that little by little. Other things include:

  • Shopping Cart: it’s almost there but we still have a little bit of work to do to finalize a seamless and safe shopping cart. We’ll keep you posted on when we’re ready.
  • Broken links: – our old site had a lot of material on it, but that means making sure that all of it has migrated over properly. If you spot anything that looks funny or that seems out of whack, we’d appreciate it if you could drop us a quick note.
  • Missing Posts: we’ve noticed that there are some missing posts that didn’t make the migration. We deliberately didn’t post much here on the blog during the last month or so since we were focusing on the new site. But we’ll track down whatever is missing.

What’s New?

1) Store Filtering

Over the past year-and-a-half, much of our web traffic has been to the portion of our site where we sell used tackle – bamboo fly rods, vintage fly reels (and now angling books). On our old site you sort of had to know where to go to find things and so we wanted to make it easier for people. Many people also visited because they were looking for something specific – say a 7′ for a #4 – and which required a bit of browsing to see if anything else new had arrived. On most of our product pages we’ve now added filters to let folks zero in on whatever they’re looking for. An example from our bamboo fly rods page:

filter for spinoza site   Hopefully this will be useful!

2) Better Product Photos and detail zoom

Another thing we’ve added are bigger photos on the pages that have items for sale, and better yet, the ability to mouse over them in order to see details. We’re hoping that this will really allow people to see the workmanship and details of items. Let us know what you think.

Spinoza Product Screen Grab 

3) We’re going to need a bigger Blog

While we started out writing pretty long posts on this blog, they’ve gotten shorter the busier we’ve been. So we started trying to feature more photos. On our old site, the small width just really didn’t do them justice, so we’ve gone to a full-width blog to try and really highlight some of the great photos we’re able to put up.

4) Minimalist & Clean

While our old site wasn’t exactly cluttered, we wanted to take the clean approach a bit further. The point of this site has always been to highlight craftsmanship – my work as well as many others – and I figured the cleaner the site the more that work could really speak for itself.

Feedback? Those are the basics, but if you have thoughts or feedback about how to improve our new site, definitely let us know. It’s for you, our readers, after all!

-Marc


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