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WordCamp Baltimore 2018 Talk: Designing the WordPress Admin Experience

WordCamp Baltimore has always been a favorite one of mine. The venue, the organizers, and the people are always among the best.

I was thrilled to be a speaker this year, covering an important subject for people who build custom CMS solutions. Here’s the description for my talk, “Designing the WordPress Admin Experience: Great UX for Content Creators,” from the WordCamp website:

The user experience on the front end of a website is a big deal. This gets our attention, and rightfully so.

For the people who create and post the content, their experience is just as important but often overlooked. This is especially true of web design today, with the need for more sophisticated layouts and rich data.

When we build a site for a client using WordPress, we need to remember that the content managers responsible for the site are also our customers.

Over more than 15 years of leading site development with content management systems behind them, I’ve discovered how much weight is often put on the content managers’ shoulders. Content managers understand content, taxonomies, and metadata. WordPress offers us the ability to design the content management experience through the use of custom post types, fields, and taxonomies.

It is important to embrace the content managers, talk to them about their objectives and workflow, and design usable interfaces that allow them to do their job efficiently.

My experience is this: make the content managers happy, and you’ll have a customer for a long, long time.

In my talk, I’ll walk through real-world examples of WordPress backend interfaces that were designed with the content manager in mind and share tips and resources to help get you on the path of building winning admin interfaces.

As an added bonus, my coworker Joey Blake is also speaking at the event, on the topic of website performance.

Here are some of the reactions to this year’s talk: