It’s not like this happens all the time, but we’ve gone through three re-designs on the Urban Dater since we opened it up in 2008.
I’m not gonna lie, this post will bore the pants off of you, if you aren’t sweet on techie talk. Nevertheless, I’ll press on and share where we’re at and where we came from.
2008 –The Not So Distant Past of the Urban Dater, in it's Infancy!
I vomit in my mouth just a little bit when looking at this layout and really it was my own damn fault since I designed the damn thing to begin with. This was the first iteration of the Urban Dater, which was powered by Joomla 1.5 + MyBlog 3.x. I was not crazy about this site, even though I do rather like Joomla. The blog component was, simply put, limited. It allowed for multiple users but it didn’t have enough “Oomph” to get things moving in the right direction. During this time we also played with having an actual online community to discuss dating and relationships in groups and forums and the like. That, too, never took off. However, the blog did garner interest, not much, but there was some interest… That gave me a lot to think about, at that time. Also, I was eyeing WordPress and Drupal as platforms to run the Urban Dater. Which to choose?
2009 – This is the layout that we are most known for, not horribly shabby!
I decided that I would move the urban dater over to WordPress, after much research and testing. The layout changed as well to what many of you remember, pics of couples at the top of the page and rotated each time you visited a page within the site. It was a nice three column layout and it was functional. I designed and put it together and I was pretty happy with my handiwork! In a month’s time we saw our traffic jump by well over 200%, no joke. There was a “but,” however; the “but” here was that the site suffered from longer than average load times for page requests. It became too unwieldy and caused issues…
August 2010 – Ta Dah, Mother [email protected]!
Welcome to the yesterday of the future… Or something like that. My dear friend and the female half of the Urban Dater, TaylorCast, pretty much slapped me around and demanded we get someone else to do the design on the site. We reached out to our friends at DigiSavvy to see if they could help us out with a simplified theme that was also highly functional and easy to read. DigiSavvy actually took care of us pretty well, I’d say. The theme is clean and simple, unlike me, of course. We think the new theme is a great fit and will probably stick with it for a good long while.