Now We Have “Recent Articles” on the Single Post Pages

By Daniel Scocco

I have been thinking about how to improve the navigation on this site for a while already. I really like to display only post excerpts on the homepage, but I recognize that it becomes cumbersome for the reader if in order to read the latest articles he needs to click on an article, read it, go back to homepage, click on another article and so on.

Trying to solve this problem I added a “Recent Articles” section to the sidebar on all the single post pages. That means that the user should now be able to navigate easily across the latest 20 articles on the blog without needing to go back to the homepage.

Right now, however, the “Recent Articles” get displayed below the “Popular Articles.” I decided to keep the “Popular Articles” section even on the single post pages because it might serve the readers that come from search engines or from social bookmarking sites directly, and it also has some SEO effect towards the articles listed there (they end up receiving over 400 internal links from the site).

My question for you guys is: do you think that having these two sections clutter the sidebar? In other words, would it be better if on single post pages only the “Recent Articles” section got displayed and not both of them?

Feel free to share the navigation strategy you use on your own blog as well, and why you think it is effective.



Share

27 Responses to “Now We Have “Recent Articles” on the Single Post Pages”

  • medyum

    I like the new navigation method although I like blogs better that put the whole post on the page rather than a link for the full article.

  • abeel

    I also like how you have the popular articles leading into the recent articles which in turn leads to the subscribe form. That’s a great way to lead the user and potentially increase your subscription rates as well.

    http://infomechanic.blogspot.com

  • abeel

    I also like how you have the popular articles leading into the recent articles which in turn leads to the subscribe form. That’s a great way to lead the user and potentially increase your subscription rates as well.

  • Tom Beaton

    You have so much good stuff, any way of making it more easily accessible is a great!

  • Patrix

    I think both popular and recent posts add to the navigation aspect on single post pages. It lets the first-time users explore your blog although they could always go to the homepage to check out the recent posts. It would make an interesting study as to the ratio of people checking out recent posts from the sidebar to the people going to the homepage directly from the header link.

  • iHanna

    If you need the information, you look in the sidebar. If you don’t need it or don’t want to surf more on the site you don’t look at the sidebar at all thus it’s not cluttering anything or disturbing.

    🙂

  • mayooresan

    There is a plug-in to show the related posts after your post’s content!!! That has improved the navigability and the readers time on my site. 🙂

  • Rajeev Edmonds

    It’s a good move and will surely reduce the bounce rate significantly. The subscription box placed strategically just below them is perfect.

  • Armen

    Just to add…this is long overdue 😉

  • Steven Finch

    I would like to find out the click thru ratio of these links at the bottom of the posts. Do they actually get used or are they for look.

  • Ruchir Chawdhry

    I use the same setup as yours. First the popular and then the recent ones. I still like this format even if they overlap a little…

  • Daniel

    Dan, they are just HMTL and PHP on the WordPress theme files.

  • Leo

    It looks good, but I think I would echo the thoughts about cutting them down a little further. But it is nice to have them right there.

  • Andy MacDonald – SEO & Marketing Blog

    I don’t think it looks cluttered, but i do think you should reduce the amount displayed in one or both lists. Maybe 7 of the Popular articles, and 5 of the recent articles.

  • Dan Schulz

    From a usability standpoint you did the right thing. I’d probably go with 10-15 popular and recent posts each, as you did, but go with whatever works for you and your readers best.

    I also like how you have the popular articles leading into the recent articles which in turn leads to the subscribe form. That’s a great way to lead the user and potentially increase your subscription rates as well.

    If you don’t mind me asking, what plugins are you using for these three features? I’ve been looking around for some (of each) but I have yet to make up my mind. Also, what factors went into making the decisions to use those particular plugins?

    Or was everything just custom-written in-house?

  • John

    What i did was add related posts and recent posts – 5 of each – right under the single post. I feel users eyes are already focused on the center of the page so that would generate more clicks.

  • Mike

    I middle click every link to open it in a new tab and then close it when I’m done so it really doesn’t make any difference to me.

    But then again, I also read everything through a feed reader so I hardly ever end up on homepages of blogs anyway.

  • [ Nugraha ]

    I do no use recent articles, cause I want my visitor read my blog from above page to the end of the page.

  • Daniel

    Thanks for the input guys. I reduced the number to 15 Popular Articles and 10 Recent Articles, and it is looking better indeed.

  • Ty Brown

    I like the new navigation method although I like blogs better that put the whole post on the page rather than a link for the full article.

  • David Airey

    I’ve shown the popular posts and recent articles in my right hand sidebar for some time, but prefer to show less ‘recent articles’ than you have.

    How about limiting them to 10? Then there’s less chance of your ‘subscribe via email’ being the last piece of content (instead of your middle column).

  • Jimmy Shelter

    20 items in both lists seem a bit much.

    10 items per list would seem to be sufficient, and much less clutter.

  • cimddwc

    Basically I like it, but I think 20 are too much, it gets somewhat cluttered – I’d reduce both lists to 10 each.

  • Ben

    I like the idea of having the recent articles in the sidebar because I hate having to go back to the homepage. If you think that it is clattering the sidebar, you could always but it right beneath the related articles in your post.

    Always tough to decide between usefulness and artistic look. Personally, I prefer usefulness.

Comments are closed.