The LA Times launched their redesign a month ago and I have to say, I’m really loving it. I loved it the first time I saw it and it draws me in a little bit more every time I visit the site.
I enjoy having serifs back on the page and I really think it does wonders for the branding. Their new masthead (header) is really the cornerstone to the site’s new look and aura. Everything feels clean and crisp and errs on the side of whitespace. Whenever I’m on the site, no matter what part of the page, I can feel that I’m reading the LA Times. Now that is branding.
I find myself not only reading more articles off the LA Times when I visit, but I also find myself finishing more articles. I’m less distracted by other boxes or features and really just focus in on the article. And because everything is clean, my eyes flow more naturally across the page and onto other headlines.
Oddly in tandem, I’m noticing the ads more on the new redesign. Not that I’ve ever clicked on banner ads, but I’m noticing them more because they stand out so much compared to the rest of the site. I also think there are fewer ads on the site. Or at the very least I’m not trying as hard to block out ads (or ad-like content or just content I’m not interested in). I think it’s because I feel at ease reading that when an ad does pop-up I notice it before scrolling away. I’m sure this helps their CTRs and as the AdOps guy at SlideShare, I can really appreciate that.
The one thing the redesign hasn’t fixed, is the occasional typo I still find on the site. Oops!