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The experience of my publishing website is, for obvious reasons, centered around easily finding and getting to content. The layout, functionality, and page hierarchies are all built and organized to get users to what they are interested in reading about, as quickly as possible.

Very soon, I will be launching a sort of self-service content purchasing, publishing, and management platform to monetize certain portions of the site. For example, users will be able to purchase native advertisements and press release spots, create them with a form, and manage them after they've been publishing.

The people that will be using this "publishing platform" will very rarely be the same sorts that will be reading the content. The "publishers" will tend to be PR or marketing professionals, whereas the typical website reader is closer to an engineer. So, two entirely different roles and mindsets.

I am considering creating an entirely different experience for the "Publishing Hub" section of the website. While the branding, colors, fonts, etc. will be very similar, I am thinking about doing a separate navigation, sidebar, footer, etc.

I am curious as to whether or not I will be setting myself up for failure by doing this. I can think of an obvious detriment (altering the site experience and making a user "learn" a new site). I think a benefit would be that it is blatantly obvious that the user is no longer in the "content consumption" portion of the site, and they are now in the "content creation" portion.

Is this a terrible idea through and through. Are there any success or failure stories out there? Should I just stick one site experience throughout the entire website?

Thanks for your advice.

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I believe you should have a separate module for your "Publishing platform". Here's why:

UX

It's not so much to do with having a new UI for a new feature as it is to do with how the users will interact with it. Like you mentioned correctly, the user-base for the publishing platform would be different from the earlier portal. The expectations would be different and so would be the workflow.

What about the existing users? Yes, some (could be a lot, doesn't matter) existing users would use the new portal and yes, there will be a learning curve. However, this does not mean that you will lose them. They understand that the purpose of both are different and if they don't, they'll not use the new site but they will certainly not stop using the other one.

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