05 January 2009 ~ 17 Comments

Calling All Sports Fans – ESPN.com gets redesign

ESPN.com - 2009 first major redesign

ESPN.com - 2009 first major redesign

In the first major redesign of the new year, ESPN.com unveils it’s latest redesign today, after two weeks in “private” Beta for it’s Insider subscribers.  Despite the two week focus group, today’s redesign doesn’t appear noticeably different from the version that launched privately 12/15.  Their stated goals were:

1) less clutter, ostensibly to drive higher engagement (more time spent on site, more pageviews, more traffic)
2) more ad space, to drive higher revenue

Do you think the new site accomplishes it’s objectives?

I’m not sure they achieve their primary objective (although one must wonder if that’s really their #1 goal behind the scenes in Bristol, or do Advertisers trump Audience?) as “less” clutter is a relative term.  I wouldn’t exactly describe the redesign as minimalist.  There are some nice touches though, even if they’re slightly hidden (checkout the scoreboard on the homepage, above the top navigation).  As for goal #2, after visiting last night I fell asleep dreaming of buying a new F150, and couldn’t figure out why the Ford homepage had so many clips from Sportscenter on it, so I’d call that a success!

Let’s hear your thoughts.  What works, what doesn’t?  How will you apply these lessons in your own redesign efforts in 2009? (Hopefully NOT by taking 1 calendar year to work on a single redesign!)  We’d love you to weigh in…

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