Being affiliated with SB Nation has given us some incredible tools to work with over the years. The company has quickly become the destination for high-quality insight driven by us, the fans. With well over 300 blogs spanning from college basketball to MMA to cycling, SB Nation truly has every sports fan covered. Max and I have had the pleasure to be apart of the family for many years now and next week will be one of the biggest events/overhauls in the short history of SB Nation. SB Nation United is being launched next week and it is going to dramatically change how we bring you news and how fans across the country interact with one another.
The overarching purpose of SB Nation United is to bring our communities forward into a modern era and give site managers the tools and flexibility to provide the best content to our readers. The things that have made us what we are (gamethreads, fanshots, fanposts, great comment system) will not be changing but there will be numerous improvements to the site. The new sites are fast, sleek, and streamlined. With this being said, follow after the jump to take a look at what the future holds...First and foremost, you will be happy to know that SB Nation United was created with the assumption that site performance and stability had to be improved. Page load times will be much faster and system outages will be far more rare. It will load so fast that you will have absolutely no choice but to read how much Max and I blather on about recruiting.
Since I'm not the most tech-savvy "under the hood" type guy...let's look at some of the other improvements. Mainly...ahhhh, it's pretty. When you log on to Slipper Still Fits, you are going to be greeted with an incredibly different home page that is flexible, powerful, and let's the site managers feature whatever they want so you can cut through and get what is most important. Here are a couple samples screenshots:
As you can plainly see, the new landing page is modern, flexible, and lets us do something we have never been able to in the past: feature content that we think you should care about. Rather than having everything in reverse chronological order, we'll be able to feature certain aspects that are 'burning' for GU fans. It is going to be incredibly powerful and should keep great discussion going in our community.
FanPosts and FanShots are another integral part of the new design. They are far easier to create and they will be easy for Max and I to integrate into our content as some of the best work comes from our readers. Here is a quick example of the expanded FanShot section:
Speaking of things that have made SB Nation unique; the Story Stream. If you have visited our many hubs or home pages, one of the coolest parts of the website is the Story Stream. If you aren't familiar, Story Streams are the best way I have ever seen a website cover developing stories. Rather than have 15 independent articles that are all covering whether or not a certain recruit will pick Gonzaga, we can now have one link that provides updates from yesterday to three months ago so all you need to click is one place and you will be totally up to speed. It is extremely exciting for a site that covers recruiting as much as we do. Here is a quick screener of that:
The updates will flow in reverse chronological order so that you get the most recent updates first. Hopefully they all end with "X Commits to Gonzaga" but, unfortunately, SB Nation United is that good...almost though.
Lastly, mobile. As the title clearly states a big goal of SB Nation United is to streamline our product so that wherever you are (tablet, PC, phone, etc) you know you are getting a full SB Nation experience. Here is a screener of the new mobile site:
We know that the changes will take some time to get used to which is most of the reason why we are showing these screenshots in advance rather than having you fall out of your chair on launch day. We will provide some documents with best practices and what not when things begin to take shape.
Hope you like!