balloonsYou heard it here first, folks:  AAR is about to undergo a facelift.

Okay, more of a full facelift for the home page and discrete shots of botox and restalyne for the rest of the site.

Confusing, yes?  You won’t be on Monday, June 21st when our new design debuts.

We’ve worked hard with some super talented people to put together a new home page that better reflects the way people use the Web today. It’s clean and uncluttered and modern and we think it’s a winner.  As for the rest of the site, the basic layout will remain the same (coding issues – don’t ask), but there will be a new masthead and background throughout the site.  Yes, folks, it’s true.  The hammock is saying buh-bye.

What will this mean to readers?  An easier, more accessible, and more intuitive user experience.   AAR is going to work the way other Web sites work, with fewer quirks and idiosyncrasies.  And a big improvement right from the start?  You won’t have to manually refresh the home page anymore to check for updates.

Another change?  We’re increasing the size of our vertical ads – the ones that appear on pages other than the message boards.  Our ads are now more in line with others you see on the Web.  The upside for authors and publishers?  More bang for your advertising buck and more room to get creative with your designs.

I will offer one tip:  We know many readers have bookmarked a page on the site – New Reviews or the Message Board, for example – and typically enter the site by one of those back doors.  If you’re one of them, we hope you’ll considering switching your point of entry to our revamped home page.  The home page is going to be…well, useful and the best way to know exactly what’s new on the site.

And, even though I said just one tip, here’s another bonus.  We’ve pulled out all the stops and have a very generous prize package from Avon books to help us celebrate our launch day.  And, believe me, you won’t want to miss it.  Seriously.

So, June 21st is the day.  We’re excited and hope you all will be, too.

– Sandy AAR