Port Talbot Magnet is excited to unveil our new website today. It has taken months of hard work and planning, but the blood, sweat and tears are worth it now we have the end result.
Our old site looked out of date, was not responsive to tablets and mobile devices, was hosted on an old domain name that didn’t reflect our brand, and was slow to load for two reasons – it was enormous (it took five days alone just to back it up!), and it was hosted in California.
The new site addresses each of these issues.
In terms of design, the new site is much more modern, looks cleaner and is simpler to use. We have put images at the heart of the layout, and with larger font sizes and less clutter on the page, news stories are easier to read and look inviting.
We have also taken care over advertising on the site. Of course we rely on advertising to cover our costs so we can keep running the news service. We also appreciate that local businesses are key to our town’s prosperity and future, and so we want to give them good value for money when they advertise. But we have taken care that our ads do not slow down the site or intrude unduly on your experience of reading the content. Though they are quietly present on every page, you won’t find adverts popping up as you’re half way through reading a news story, or taking huge chunks out of your data allowance.
As tablets and smart phones become the norm for reading news, we know that having a website that responds to different media and allows access in multiple different ways on different devices is crucial. The new theme has been designed by the Centre for Community Journalism, and this website would not have been possible without their hard work, generosity and advice behind the scenes.
We have also taken the opportunity to move away from our old domain name, www.lnpt.org, which stood for Local News Port Talbot – a hangover from our earliest days back in 2010 when we first launched the website. The Port Talbot Magnet brand name, which we launched in 2011, has become well known in Port Talbot, and it’s important our domain name reflects it, making it easier to find and click.
Finally, we have moved our hosting from America to south Wales, and reduced loading times by squishing down image sizes. These things taken together mean everything loads much more quickly and, again, doesn’t take up too much of your data allowance.
There are some other additions to the site. Our What’s On section enables anyone to upload an event they would like to publicise, which, once approved, will be added to the calendar. We have also updated our Contact section, which now includes our brand new complaints procedure. This will be developed and updated over the coming weeks as we formalise our application to be regulated by IMPRESS, a new press regulator.
As the navigation has changed a little, you may miss some things you used to be able to find on our old menus. Everything that was on our old website is still there, but you may need to use the search button to find some things. If you’re stuck, please get in touch.
We hope you like using the site. As with anything new, we are looking to improve and develop what we offer, so if you’d like to give us feedback on the new site, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below.