After months of internal development and weeks of beta testing, the new Watchful Dashboard is now available for all users.
The new Dashboard was developed to address feedback from a number of Watchers who wanted more of the interface dedicated to site management and an app-like experience with all the site management functions separated from public-facing website.
As you can see in the screenshot above, the new Dashboard addresses both these issues while taking inspiration from other modern, online services such Mailchimp, Wistia and Wunderlist.
More space. Less clutter.
To increase the space available for Joomla website management, we applied two strategies.
First, we compressed the header by removing the main menu and the large Watchful logo. This gave us more room vertically so more sites could be seen without having to scroll down in the browser.
Second, we applied a full-width design to maximize the horizontal space for all screen sizes. Although we added a left menu that occupies some space in this dimension, we included the ability to collapse this menu to just a narrow, unobtrusive row of icons.
Another common feature request from Watchers is the integration of other internet-related data services important to website owners.
We started by adding uptime monitoring back in May and today we are launching Google Analytics integration.
In the screenshot below you’ll see a preview of the Analytics screen with traffic, traffic trends, most viewed pages and other vital statistics about the people visiting your web site.
Since Google limits the number of site profiles you can have in any one account, our implementation supports simultaneous Analytics account which will be required by our Pro and Enterprise users.
Adding Google Analytics is a simple process that is described in full in our knowledge base.
Sometimes its the little things
We’ve also included a few finishing touches to improve how you feel about your Watchful experience.
For example, we will pull your profile image directly from Gravatar — the free, globally recognized avatar service — using the email address used on your Watchful account. Gravatar supports multiple email addresses so feel free to add the email address you use at Watchful to your Gravatar profile.
Your Gravatar is displayed in the top-right of the screen.
We’ve also moved a lot of the account preferences to the profile link which now resides alongside your Gravatar at the top-right.
With the exception of Google Analytics, our goal in redesigning the Dashboard was focused on making more space and improving the productivity for all Watchers.
Going forward, we will use the new Dashboard as a base to improve the operation of the features themselves.
Some of the items we have on our radar are improvements to backup, validation and remote installation features to prevent timeouts and delays when performing these tasks on many websites at once.
In closing, we recognize the contributions of all our technical staff who designed, developed and tested the Dashboard over these last few months under the direction of our CTO and CDO, Pierre-André Vullioud and David Pizzotti.
Thanks also to our dedicated BETA Watchers who were great bug finders. If you are an early adopter and don’t mind a bug here and there, be sure to drop us a note in our support area and we will add you to our BETA watching program.