News, Updates & Announcements

Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 of 6 pages with 17 results

Jan 17th, 2012

Users Can Now Directly Add New Teas

Teacup icon with a plus symbol in front of it
Users can now add teas directly.
When we first launched, we did not allow users to directly add new teas to our database. This was inconvenient, as if you wanted to review a tea that was not listed, you had to wait for a site admin to add the tea, and we were often slow at responding to these suggestions. To address this issue, we have now made it so that our users can add teas directly to our database, and rate and review teas directly after adding them. This feature is only available to registered users, so if you wish to add teas, you will need to sign up for a free account if you have not already done so. To add new teas:
Before you start adding teas, however, it is important to understand why we did not add this feature initially. We put a great deal of care into how teas on our site are classified. Each tea is listed by brand, style (the type of tea, how it is produced), and region of production. The style describes not just broad categories like black tea or green tea, but often, specific sub-varieties, such as sencha or Tie Guan Yin. Furthermore, we separate style from region; for example, teas in the style of Keemun are historically produced in Anhui, China, but are now produced in other provinces and even outside of China.

We ask that when you add new teas, you do your best to correctly classify them, and that you first search carefully to make sure that your tea is not already listed. Do not worry if you don't know everything about how to classify a tea; we have help documentation on the page to add a tea, and you can add comments if you are unsure about anything, and we will check each submission and fix any errors.

If you work for a tea company:

Screenshot of tool to add teas
We have a tool to help tea companies list their teas more accurately and efficiently. Contact us if you wish to use it.
If you work for a tea company, our terms of use specify that you may not rate or review your company's teas. We would still like for you to add your teas, but we ask you not to use the tool intended for regular users, as we have a different tool so you can do this more easily.

Listing your teas will benefit your company with free visibility even if no one reviews your teas. We link directly from our page on each tea, to the product page for that tea on your website. Teas that you add will be listed under the various categories of your brand, and the styles and regions in which the tea is classified, and your tea will also be returned in searches. If you would like to list the teas sold by your company, please contact us and we will get your account set up to do so.

Dec 19th, 2011

RateTea.net Acquires RateTea.com And Is Now RateTea

RateTea Logo with .net crossed out and replaced with .com
We are pleased to announce that on December 16th, 2011, Merit Exchange LLC, the company that runs RateTea, acquired the domain RateTea.com. As of today, the site is now officially named RateTea, and the website has been switched over to the new domain RateTea.com. Although our fans have been referring to our site as RateTea for some time, this announcement marks the official transition.

We hope that this small change can be symbolic of the growth and improvements RateTea has been seeing.

Why did you not start as RateTea.com? Who owned RateTea.com before?

J-Tea Logo
The domain RateTea.com was first owned by Josh Chamberlain, the owner of J-Tea International, a small tea company based in Eugene, Oregon, selling Taiwanese teas sourced directly from small farms. When RateTea was launched in 2009, as RateTea.net, this domain was unavailable, and the .net was purchased as a second-best choice.

Although we ended up registering the domain name after it expired, we want to recognize Josh Chamberlain for his integrity, with his generous offer of selling us the domain below the cost he incurred at purchasing it. We also want to recognize that he was actually earlier than us when it came to the idea of an interactive tea rating website, although we were the first to actually carry through with the idea.

Please update your links:

We will retain ownership of the old domain, RateTea.net, indefinitely. All links to the old site will remain valid, and will redirect to the corresponding pages on the new domain. However, we ask that from here on, you please link to and refer to RateTea.com as the domain of choice.

Thank you, and happy holidays!

Nov 8th, 2011

Logo, Header, Homepage, and Rating Descriptors

RateTea LogoLook for our logo on Facebook, Twitter, and other sites.
We have not published a newsletter in some time, and in this gap, we have rolled out a series of incremental changes to our site. If you have been visiting the site regularly, you've likely noticed most or all of these changes, and if you haven't visited in a while, you've been missing out!

Logo & redesigned header:

We now have an official logo. We have replaced the original, small header with a new header, which looks cleaner and more professional, more spacious, and which we hope will more clearly communicate the extent and nature of our site. The links in the header are the same as before; they have only been rearranged slightly.

You can see our full logo at the top of our site; on the right is a compact, square version of our logo which you can see on Facebook, Twitter, and on other websites where we have a presence.
Screenshot of RateTea.net homepageScreenshot of the new homepage

New homepage layout:

In response to our users, we redesigned our homepage to make it both more visually appealing and easier to navigate. We still highlight our recent reviews, recently updated articles, and styles and varieties of tea, but we also have an introduction at the top that explains what our site can help you with: discovering new teas, learning about where your tea comes from, and keeping track of which teas you enjoy most.

We also made the signup process much easier. If you have not yet signed up for an account and started rating and reviewing teas, please do so! You can now sign up directly on the homepage.
Collage of pictures about teaA collage showing some of the pictures that represent the various articles and topics covered on our site.

Tags and pictures denoting our articles:

When we first launched a few years ago, we only had a few informational articles, but our article content has since grown to a massive size; we currently have 532 articles on brands, styles, and regions of tea, and 33 other articles in the "articles" section.

Because of the growing size of the materials on our site, we have added a tagging system so that you can browse related topics, such as Tea and Health, Tea and Sustainability, Brewing Tea, Tea Business and Industry, and Buying Tea.

The adding of pictures to denote each article is long overdue! These pictures are now shown on the homepage, the articles page, and a few other places on the site.
Screenshot of new rating descriptors
The new rating descriptors can help guide you to pick a number!

New rating descriptors:

We have received feedback from our users for some time now, especially newer users, remarking that they have trouble picking a numerical rating for tea, including for the different categories aroma, flavor, and value. We recently added a new feature, verbal rating descriptors, which can help make it easier for you to pick a number when rating teas.

When you select a number, the text on the right will give a verbal description of what that numbers means, along the lines of "poor, fair, good, excellent, outstanding". Play with the ratings yourself to see what options there are!

And if you need even more guidance, you can always read our guide on writing about tea. But remember, you don't need to be a connoisseur to rate teas, and you don't even need to know much of anything about tea. Just share your own opinions!