The European Tour website looks like its old, well-run self after the Tour brass decided to go in the wayback machine back to earlier in the year.
Several months ago, the European Tour unveiled a new website style, one less heavy on data and numbers and text in favor of a design that was more modern, responsive and aimed to appeal to the casual fan (or so it seemed). Unfortunately, the design had a lot of bugs, was difficult to navigate and created frustration among golf junkies who loved the old format. Those upset fans were vocal in hoping the European Tour would scrap the new website design and just go back to the way things were.
On Monday, they got their wish. The European Tour web team took down the website for "emergency" work, and the website came back online using the old design.
European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley took the somewhat extraordinary step of writing a note to fans in an open letter to explain the change back. It reads in part:
I have been disappointed with the functionality of our new platforms since they were relaunched and I completely understand the frustration many of you have shared with us.
I was hopeful the technical issues we faced were behind us, but having monitored our website and app closely they are clearly not, which is why we have taken action.
You, the fans, are vitally important to the European Tour and our players. I want to make your experience – whether in person at our tournaments or on-line – the best it can possibly be.
We have listened to your feedback and we appreciate all of you who took the time to contact us. We took that very much into consideration when taking this step.
Obviously running a website ourselves here, we know firsthand how tough it is to transition from one look to another. What the Euro Tour team tried was a massive undertaking in all kinds of facets, from design, to URL nomenclature, to functionality. They did that trying to give fans a better experience, and the kinks weren't quite worked out when they went live. Kudos to the European Tour for recognizing a problem and fixing it.