Updated: Aug 26
Hi everyone. You have probably seen my recent post about my bringing Nomad’s Reviews out of digital hibernation and my future plans for the site. I confess that I had neglected Nomad’s Reviews when I started writing for Coin-Drop.com and then for Exclusively Games, The Nerd Stash, Game Luster etc. - see the portfolio page for details.
I apologise for dropping the ball like this. It was neglectful of me and I won’t let this happen again, even if I am lucky enough to land a gig with one or more of the big-name video game sites.
I have now brought the site and its content up to a standard I am reasonably happy with, but being the OCD perfectionist that I am I will not be stopping there. There is still work to be done, as the site lacks several features which would improve it considerably. These include;
#1 Replying Directly to Comments.
It appears that members are unable to reply directly to each other’s comments, myself included. I was surprised when I learnt this since I assumed this was standard practice for all websites by this point. Adding this would make the comments section more dynamic and interesting, as it would allow for a back-and-forth conversation. It could also prevent confusing “Was that comment meant for me?” scenarios.
# 2 Vertical Blog Category Menu.
This would make it easier to see all the categories at once and would allow the use of a larger and easier to read menu font.
#3 Dark Mode.
Easier on the eyes as it reduces eye strain and some people prefer the aesthetics of dark modes in general.
#4 Stability Improvements
I’m aware the site is not always as stable as it should be. In particular, I have noticed that sometimes links decide to stop working for a while. I imagine this is extremely frustrating for everyone - it certainly frustrates me.
Based on both visitor feedback and some of my own ideas I would also like to make the following improvements.
#5 Better Mobile Optimization
The site works on mobile, but it doesn't work well. It certainly doesn't look as good as the desktop version.
#6 'Go to Bottom' and 'Back to Top' Buttons
The mobile version has a 'Back to Top' button, but lacks a 'Go to Bottom' feature. The desktop site lacks either, which is not ideal considering the average length of articles is about 1250 words, which can result in a lot of scrolling.
Unfortunately, I am unable to implement many of these features at present for several reasons, which I have detailed below.
One of the main reasons is my reliance on web-building software - in this case, Wix - since I can’t code (yet). Wix is very easy to use - building a website with Wix is the digital equivalent to building a model with Legos - the pieces are made for you; all you need do is put them together as you want them. So far, so good.
But there is a downside. Just like Lego, it does place some restrictions on what you can do with it. When I asked Wix Customer Support about adding these features I was informed that they were not possible in the present build of Wix, however, they might be added at a future date. I was not the first person to enquire about such features, so I was able to add my vote to the list. With luck they will be added at some point - I will keep you all posted.
PS - It might be possible to integrate Disqus with the site, which would solve the ‘replying to comments problem’. I will attempt to do this soon, assuming it is possible in the current version of Wix. Currently there isn’t ‘an app for that’ on the Wix app page, so I have contacted Wix Customer Support for clarification. Watch this space.
PPS - I suspect the stability issues stem from Wix too since the freelancer business site I created later via WordPress suffers no such problems.
This sums up the main technical issues I have with the site at present. Rectifying them will require;
A - Wix increasing the stability of their online hosting and implementing the requested features, or…
B - My learning how to code so I can recreate the site in a different web builder, or…
C - Employing someone to recreate the site for me. This would require more funding than I have available at present. NB - this is one of my Patreon and SubscribeStar goals, so any help towards these goals would be greatly appreciated.
If you are more technically savvy than I am and know of other ways to fix these problems please let me know. Any advice will be gratefully received.
If you encounter any other problems with the site, please let me know ASAP and I will do what I can to fix them. Also, if you have any suggestions for further improvements please pass them along and I will see what I can do about implementing them.
Thank you for taking the time to read this. Now that the site is up and running this article should be the last ‘behind the scenes’ post for a while. Now I can get back to writing about gaming 😊
All the best and I’ll see you all again soon.
Feel free to share your thoughts and experiences in the comment section below.
Iain is a 40+ author and gamer from England, who started his gaming journey on the Atari 2600 36 years ago. His specialities include obscure cult classics, retro games, mods and fan remakes. He hates all sports games and is allergic to on-line multi-player. Since he is British, his body is about 60% tea. He can be reached via Twitter at https://twitter.com/IainBaker17, and contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Title image: Dacostario / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)