It’s been only two weeks since I revamped The Russell Bulletin and I’m already looking at ways I can change the site to make it a better experience for readers. There are three big changes that are going to be rolled out over the next few days that I think people will love:
- Ads are going away as of now. The site does not yet have sufficient traffic to interest quality ad networks like Fusion, The Syndicate, or The Deck just yet, so Adsense was my default option. I don’t know about most of you, but I hate the look of Google’s ads – I shouldn’t have put them up in the first place. With that said, I won’t rule out ads in the future, especially if given the opportunity to feature those from the aforementioned networks.
- I’m going to be integrating Tinypass into the site sometime this weekend. I don’t think that we produce enough content at this point in time to justify having a full-on paywall – even a “leaky” one like The New York Times or The Dish – but I do like the idea of enabling our readers to support what we do in an inexpensive and unobtrusive manner. For now the only “perk” subscribers will get is the satisfaction derived from helping a team of young writers pay for books and ramen through our work on this site, but as time goes on I’d like to start including new features like subscriber-exclusive longform posts or a podcast like Shawn Blanc’s Shawn Today.
- Starting tomorrow morning, there will be a post “stuck” to the top of the home page of The Russell Bulletin that will feature the top news of the day. Instead of doing individual posts throughout the day on the same story, we’ll simply update this sticky piece to reflect new developments. I think that this would go a long way towards making this site useful for readers who don’t feel like scanning through news sites every few hours, as The Brief and Evening Edition have done. To keep readers engaged after they’ve caught up on the day’s events, we’ll still have our wonderful linked-list posts right below the sticky piece.