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3 simple ways to make your page even more beautiful

ZEEF is a platform where you collect, rank and categorize your links, and we work hard to make it nice and simple. However, it is you who make the final visual layout and the design of your page. In this post we would like to show you some simple solutions of how to improve the design of your page and make it even more beautiful.

  1. Shorten the names

First of all, try to put as short names of the links and of the blocks as possible. Leave maximum three words describing the main content of the link. If you see that the names of several links are very similar – use the name of the website instead.

Hint: DO NOT repeat the name of the page in the names of the links.

Look at the example below (don’t focus on content, the main thing here is the difference in visual presentation): we only removed “Dominican Republic” from the names of the links, and it became so much cleaner!

ZEEF page before          ZEEF page after

  1. Think of the structure of the page

When people see the ZEEF page for the first time, first of all they read the title of it, and then – the names of the blocks. The description of the page is needed, however it is not always visible. Therefore, the best way to show what type of content your page has is to create proper blocks. For example, on the JavaScript page there is a clear structure: from the general information and the basics of JavaScript, to advanced libraries and additional information. Thus, try to put the most general and important blocks on top of the page, so the visitors have a clear idea about the topic of your page and its content.

JavaScript

  1. Use non-distracting headers

Flat design is valued for its minimalism, that is why it is especially useful in ZEEF pages. Use monotonous and simple headers for your blocks and avoid too detailed pictures which may outshine the links. If you cannot find such pictures – better leave your blocks without headers at all.

ZEEF page with flat pictures

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These pages reached 10k views, why didn’t yours?

I have added one point to the guidelines, and I think this is the most important thing the curators should think about:

Be useful. ZEEF is not only for collecting the links, but also for helping people searching for information. If you decided to create a page – think first: “Why would people use it? What is the added value of the page? What problems will it solve?”

Unfortunately, there is an amount of pages on ZEEF which do not bring any added value to the visitors and to the platform in general. The reasons for this may be:

  • The curators do not really understand the point of creating ZEEF pages.
  • It is hard to find and filter useful information.
  • The curators get excited about it in the beginning, but then lose their energy and interest and abandon their pages.

According to my research, 80% of the curators need less than 1 day to create and publish their pages, and this does not always lead to the high-quality results. Creation of ZEEF page is never a matter of couple of hours – in order to collect all the relevant links, you have to be ready to make a real research on the topic!

On ZEEF there are some pages which have great added value. These are the ones I am proud to promote, being sure that people will thank me for such a great source. These are Web Design Tools, Online Collaboration Tools, Game Development and so on. These pages contain all the relevant information about the subject, and they look like this:

Wardrobe-clean

How organized ZEEF page looks like

It does not even matter what kind of clothes there are: let them be cheap and non-fashioned – I would still love to have wardrobe like this.

These pages are clean, organized, accurate, easy to use, and they are worth to be bookmarked. And most important: these page always have great statistics! People love them, share them and use them.

However, unfortunately, 80% of ZEEF pages look like this:

Wardrobe-messy

How non-organized ZEEF page looks like

The sad truth is that there may be cool, expensive and high-quality brands in this wardrobe. But it is almost impossible to find. We are lazy to search for the content. Instead, we want the links to be served on a silver platter, and even though the curators of ZEEF pages organize their links, they still make it too complicated.

For example, the page Digital Culture looks like a nice page, it has a great content and the curator spent a lot of time and resources creating it, but:

  • It’s easy to get lost, because there is no clear structure;
  • Some of the pictures are distracting;
  • The links are hard to find and do not make me feel like clicking on them;
  • Plus, it is not very clear what content these links present.

So, what is a good page?

  • It provides tools/sources for solving users’ problems (e.g. online collaboration tools).
  • It provides the best places, best products, best tutorials, best anything people look for. It can never be 60 “best” links! If you make a list of all the shops – do not call it “best shops”. And if you want to make a list of best shops – do not put all the existing links in the list. Choose top 6-10 – this is what your visitors expect from you.
  • It has everything related to the topic, but nothing extra.
  • It has short and readable links – and they should “force” the visitor to click on them.
  • It is structured and not too long (has less than 30 blocks).

How to increase the quality of the pages?

Plain information, texts, reviews and other articles are very easy to find in Google. For ZEEF there is no point competing with giants, so why to look for texts on ZEEF if we have Google for it? Instead, we should collect tools, places, shops, tutorials, books, programs, apps, cources, solutions – something that is used by people day after day, and something people would even agree to pay for.

The aim of ZEEF pages is to help people by collecting the best solutions for their problems (not just information) and by presenting them in a nice way. Thus, before creating the page, first of all, think about the benefits of using your page and it’s informativeness, structure, and names of the blocks and the links. If you already have your page on ZEEF – read the Guidelines and update your page right now!

We do not filter the information anymore, we collect the best tools and solutions to the problems people face!

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zeef research

Top 14 tips for creating best curated page

We succeeded to find the main factors which make people continue using curated content in the future as a result of research project we have recently started.

These factors are:

  1. Agreement with the ranking of the links in the page.
  2. High level of trust in the curator of the page.

We have also developed Guidelines with 14 tips for creating high-quality pages appreciated by people, thus increasing content quality on ZEEF pages, user recognition and traffic.

We thank everyone who participated in the research and took our survey – you helped us a lot, and we’ve got very inspiring results to share with you.

Agreement with the ranking

The criteria taken into account for establishing the ranking are critical. If two persons base their rankings on different criteria (e.g. price of products in the shop and distance of the shop from the customer), they will receive two completely different lists. Therefore, in order to make two parties agree with each other, it is important to use the same ranking criteria. However, the results of our research showed that ranking criteria do not influence the level of agreement of ZEEF visitors, because the visitors come to ZEEF to find the information. Thus, they do not have enough knowledge to judge which link is the best. But this is not a reason to relax! The visitors have their expectations about ranking criteria, and the curator should always take them into account.

Trust in ZEEF

Because ZEEF is a curated platform, the level of trust in ZEEF mainly depends on the level of trust in a curator of a particular page. Interesting that such aspects as how and why a curator makes up the lists do not influence the perception of the quality by the visitors. In any case, majority of them tend to see what they want to see: a high-quality, recently updated page with ranked lists of links which is made by a professional for the sake of helping people to find the best and most relevant sources of information. This can be explained by trustful and high quality design of the pages created in ZEEF. However, personal information about the curator, profile picture, structure of the page and quality of the content in general are very important for establishing trust level of the visitors.

Guidelines

In total, there were no problems with the visitors’ perception of ZEEF pages, but we would like to show our curators what their expectations are, and how they think ZEEF pages are created. In a new Guidelines page you will see 14 tips on where to find the links, how to maintain the page after it is published, what information to include about yourself, how to rank the links, etc. We recommend to read these guidelines to all our old and new curators, regardless how many pages you have already published.

Read top 14 tips for createng best page

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ranking-perception

How curators rank their lists – research study

The curators on ZEEF.com have an important role of ranking the links in their lists. However, is the perception of ranking of the curator the same as one of the visitor? Help us to answer this question!

Yana Ledeneva, a Master student of the University of Amsterdam, has started a new research project at ZEEF. The aim of this research project is to evaluate which factors the curators take into account when determining the ranking of their links, and whether the visitors of ZEEF pages perceive these rankings in a similar way curators do.

Idea of the research

On every ZEEF page there is an implicit dialogue between the curator and the visitor, which takes place through a clear, well filtered, SEO and spam-free ranking of links to web-sites that have the best content on a particular topic. This dialogue is complemented by a particular level of trust and agreement from the visitor.  If the visitors do not think that the content is fine and sound, they will disagree with the curator, thus reducing their level of trust. Therefore, for the curators on ZEEF, it is extremely important to keep the level of disagreement between themselves and their visitors as low as possible. In order to achieve this, it is essential to evaluate the process of making the ranking of the lists by the curators and compare it with the perception of rankings by ZEEF visitors.

In other words, in our research we address the issue of different perceptions of rankings by the curators and by the visitors to answer the following question:

“Do ZEEF curators take into account the same ranking factors as the visitors think should be taken?”

Description of the research

The research consists of two parts. In the first part we will analyze the main factors and parameters that are taken into account by the curators along with their methods of making rankings. The second part is dedicated to the question of how the visitors perceive the rankings on ZEEF pages and whether they agree with them. At the end of the research we will compare the results of both parties and analyze whether both the curators and the visitors perceive rankings in a similar way. Any discrepancy in the perceptions of both sides may result in a higher level of disagreement and mistrust, so with the help of this research we will be able to reveal existing problems and do everything to fix them.

This week we launch the surveys for our research, so we kindly ask both the curators of ZEEF pages and the visitors to answer the questions of our surveys. We value your time, and promise that it will not take more than 10 minutes. We guarantee that the data will be used only for research purposes and will not be shared with other parties.

Help us make the research as accurate and truthful as possible, so we are able to improve ZEEF and let people provide you with the best quality content!

Curators survey Visitors survey

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