Survey 2016: you have spoken and we will listen

A little while ago we sent out a survey to our customers and asked them about Admin Columns Pro. A big thank you to all who shared their thoughts with us. In this post we will discuss the most important pieces of feedback and how we will use them to improve Admin Columns Pro. 

Two of the survey’s most important goals were to find out what you like best about Admin Columns Pro and in which areas Admin Columns Pro can still be improved. The results were very interesting and gave us a good sense on how we are doing. We got a lot of compliments on the product (thanks!) and it seems that overall our users are happy. The most important findings of the survey are discussed below, along with how we plan to use your feedback.

We asked: Why did you start using Admin Columns Pro and what do you like best?

While this was largely an open-ended question but, it yielded clear results. Many of you expressed they loved the ability to finetune the overview (for clients) with sorting, filtering and editing as key-feature(s). Especially the combination of custom post-types and a custom field plugin was often stated as the primary reason for using Admin Columns Pro. The existing integrations for Advanced Custom Fields and WooCommerce were very well liked. Moving on to the feedback of the next question, it’s obvious what we’ll be working on next!

We asked: Which features would you like us to work on next?

There were 3 features that over 50% of you want us to work on next. These are:

  1. Bulk edit
  2. Search in the active columns
  3. More integrations supporting other (custom field) plugins.

Search and more integrations have been on our roadmap for some time, but the demand for bulk edit surprised us. We have decided to work on more integrations first (do follow the link) followed by search. We feel these are very natural and logical parts of Admin Columns that would benefit many users. But we will look into bulk edit very soon after and see how this feature can be incorporated into Admin Columns Pro.

We asked: Are all features easy to use and understandable?

It seems that using Admin Columns Pro is very intuitive and easy. There was one feature that many of you found less obvious or easy to use though: Column Sets. Apart from the fact that it’s a feature that is not interesting for every user, we will try to make it’s usefulness more clear!

We asked: How can we improve further?

A very open question with very open and useful answers. It ranged from ‘none’ to very exotic feature requests and we will use this feedback to improve Admin Columns Pro in general. There were two areas of improvement that were mentioned a couple of times: performance of saving and sorting and fine tuning of the UI.

Performance
A few users noticed that Admin Columns became slower with sorting on big datasets. Since Admin Columns is meant to save time, performance is an important aspect. We are aware of this issue and we are always working on improvements. The next major release of Admin Columns (version 4) will see a significant increase of speed for a lot of columns. We are very keen on finding more cases where you find Admin Columns not performing as you would like. So once version 4 is out; be sure to let us know when you encounter a performance problem. We’d love to help you solve it!

Fine tuning of the UI
We got some very good input on how to improve the UI. Minor changes, but very useful ones. We have been working to improve the UI and have incorporated some of your feedback too. The new version of Admin Columns (version 4) will see these improvements:

before_after
Added an update button to the bottom of the settings form. For many people the  “+ Add Column” button triggered the habit of clicking there to submit.
Easily change the top label for filtering allowing you more freedom to explain the contents and working of the filter.
Easily change the top label for filtering allowing you more freedom to explain the contents and working of the filter.
new_ui
The column settings are now grouped and have more padding which improves readability.

We asked: Should we blog?

Because why not share what we learn? We have been developing Admin Columns for over 3 years now and during this time we have of course learned a thing or two. Also, we love and rely on many awesome blogs from others who share their insights with us. Even so we wondered: are you waiting for another blog and if so, what should it be about?

We are relieved that many of you do want us to share our knowledge. These are the topics you want us to write about (and thus we will):

  1. Get the most out of Admin Columns Pro (tips, tricks and use cases)
  2. Enhance content management with WordPress (focussed on the admin)
  3. Updates (what are we working on, what has changed in the new version)

Conclusion

The most important lesson we learned from your input was this: An integration for a plugin (like Advanced Custom Fields and WooCommerce) is a massive help. If  you use a plugin to add extra fields or functionality to WordPress, Admin Columns Pro makes the content on the overview screen easy to find, organise and update. Good thing we are working on a few of them. And more will follow, suggestions are welcome.

We just want to say thanks, we loved your feedback! We are always happy to hear what you have to say, even if it is just to say hello.

P.S. To realise all these improvements we would love to add a solid developer to our team. Have good development skills? Check out the position available.