Webconsuls Blog

Friday, March 16, 2012

BLOGGER, Thank You For Listening!

Image representing Blogger as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBase
Over the past couple of years I have written about such things as designing for the guest experience and not being shy about offering a suggestion to a business, no matter how big or small the business entity. I have also talked about the importance of saying "Thank You!"

Today I want to share a story of how I made a suggestion to Google's BLOGGER design team and at the same time say "BLOGGER, Thank you for listening!"

First a little background.  It would be helpful if you Google this phrase: external links should open new window. You are going to see a lot of search engine result pages (SERP). Millions! The bottom line is this, good design promotes good user experience and if your web page or blog post includes links to other pages, then when the user clicks on the link a new browser page should open. After all, you want your reader/client/customer to be able to find their way back to your site and the cleanest way to do that is to open a new window.

If you understand HTML coding, then you know having a link open in a new window is a simple piece of code: target="_blank".  But you need to know where to place the code and therein lies the problem with guiding and teaching clients on how to use a blogging platform and how to insure their external links will open in a new window.  

Over the past few years I made the acquaintance of some of the BLOGGER team while attending Blog World Expo. And they always encourage you to send them suggestions.  In January 2011,  I sent an email to Brett Wiltshire which included the following suggestion:
         "When inserting a link in the blog text it would be wonderful if the user could easily check a box in the EDIT LINK BOX that says  “open in a new browser” . Some users know how to insert the html code < target=”_blank”>, but this can be  very hard to teach to clients."
About six weeks ago, I was working on a client's blog and realized the BLOGGER team acted on my suggestion. Or I choose to think they liked my suggestion! See the screen shot below:

See the little check box "Open this link in a new window"? This little enhancement is such a time saver for the writer and the reader.

Thank you, BLOGGER, for listening. 
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