Yes, they do, within the context of respective online presence, at the very least:
Note that it was in June ’08 that Nation moved their content from www.nationmedia.com (now the host of their corporate brands) to www.nation.co.ke.
So why is the Daily Nation (DN) the more popular site?
Let me count the ways:
1. Navigation, navigation, navigation
Having three different navigation bars in the header, sidebar and footer is confusing, EAS!
2. Scrolling text?! Please stop.
I thought about putting up a marquee here to illustrate its atrocity but couldn’t bring myself to it. It is very distracting. And it’s on all the pages, causing untold amounts of grief.
In lieu of marquees, try using a content sliders (like DN’s “Editor Choice” or carousels (like with jCarousel). Now that’s eye-candy.
3. What should I read?
Big stories need to be prominently featured; meaning you need to devote screen real estate to shepherd your reader. With DN, it’s what’s hot is unmistakable – the large “Big Story” image, Editor’s Choice carousel, YouTube channel, the Day in Pictures and the raft of related stories.
With EAS you can’t tell it’s video in the mid panels or just GIFs, till you click on them. Way to shepherd, Standard!
Yes, it’s a news portal and you have lots of great content to showcase but giving users too many options leaves them confused and may lead to more glancing than perusing. Then they leave your site.
Some users may really get drawn to the odd pockets of whitespace on EAS. And about that left navigation sidebar – it should go. Really. That’s more real estate for content.
4. Social media interaction
I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t use Twitter but I do see its potential usefulness for media organizations. One can quickly call attention to articles fresh off the online press. Used in conjunction with RSS feeds, visitor traffic can be upped substantially. So either EAS is not on Twitter or they are not telling, as is evident on their site.
I think the commenting system on EAS is broken.
Make it simpler for readers to comment: the comments and comment form need to be displayed below the article.
Another page that’s broken is video. It looks quite hastily pieced together. Check it.
What’s we’d like to see
1. Less obtrusive ads! Animated GIFs are so 1998. I’m not sure which is more annoying: having them on your site or me not being able to block them without losing much functionality. Ads are a revenue stream for high traffic sites like online newspapers.
Keep them contextual and relevant to what I’m viewing. Google knows a thing or two about this.
2. More content!