Given the number of free templates you can access on the web, you would think creating a blog would be relatively easy. However, have you ever taken the time to actually look at these templates?
The vast majority are quite simple and plain in design, which is great if you are just wanting to create a blog for you and your friends to use.
However if your intention behind making a blog is to generate/drive traffic to your business, then you are going to need more than a basic template. You are going to need a web design that both engages and draws in your audience, but that also brings balance to the content your blog contains.
So what can you do?
Well first of all, you can ensure that your blog doesn’t make the following common mistakes.
1. No order or structure to the web design – one of the most important things you should ensure is that your audience isn’t overwhelmed with too much all at once. That means when designing your blog you should take into consideration the layout and design of your ads, logos, imagery, content and sidebars so that your blog remains coherent and understandable.
Similarly it is important that you put yourself in your audiences shoes and consider how they will interpret your blog. What path will they follow? What will draw their attention first? By recognising how your audience is going to view your blog, you can introduce the order and structure they need so they are guided to the areas you consider most important.
2. No search bar – you’d be surprised by how many blogs don’t contain a search bar, but this is a big mistake. Without a search bar you are essentially leaving your audience to fend for themselves on a site they are unfamiliar with. And if they are visiting your blog with the intention of finding a particular post then this task will be incredibly difficult if they haven’t got the means to narrow down their search.
That is why it is essential that you introduce a search bar into your web design. This will make your blog more easier to navigate and much more attractive to your audience.
3. Overused typography and fonts – search the web and you’ll soon notice a common theme when it comes to fonts. Most websites and blogs don’t dare venture beyond the traditional fonts of New Times Roman, Helvetica, Baskerville etc. which is a real shame as there are many other equally beautiful fonts that can help your web design to stand out.
From professional to elegant to retro, there is a font for all occasions, so if you are looking to create a certain impression with your blog is may be worth experimenting with your fonts and finding one that suits your needs. Just be careful to make sure that it fits in with the theme of your blog; is easy to read and is in a font size that won’t discriminate against any of your audience.
4. Lack of consistency – audiences are quick to pick up on any inconsistencies with your websites, so when choosing fonts, background colours, headlines, spacing etc., it is also important that these features are not only strong enough to stand on their own, but that they are able to unite to create a strong and coherent web design. Simply aim to make your designs decision straight away and ensure that you keep to them.
5. Absence of imagination – do a Google search on ‘web design rules’ and you’ll soon find thousands of listings that can restrict the creativity of your web designer. Now whilst rules are usually put in place for a reason it is important to remember that rules are never fixed. They are always changing and as such cannot always be met.
Your audience on the other hand is unchanging. Their desires and goals remain the same throughout. For this reason when designing your blog don’t be afraid to break the rules and get creative. You may find something unconventional helps you to better connect with your audience than traditional web design.
Just be sure to experiment and don’t be afraid to try out something new…
As you can see there is no straight or fixed answer for creating the perfect blog; however avoid the pitfalls I have just mentioned and you can help your blog to achieve greater results.
So why not have a go and take your first step to making a blog? Alternatively why not enlist the help of professional web designers who can help your blog to get the attention it deserves, for all the right reasons.