Actionable Blog Design Tips | 6 Characteristics Of User-Friendly Websites That Will Increase Your Blog Traffic
Actionable Blog Design Tips | It’s incredibly easy to set up a blog, but hard to build a successful blog with significant traffic. Blogging isn’t so much about writing posts regularly as juggling dozens of little odds and ends, all of them critical, all of them demanding your attention, and all of them requiring you to learn something. And it’s easy to drop the ball, so to speak, or even all of them. At the end of the day, blog design can be as simple as applying a theme and adding a few widgets, but if you take your blog seriously and you want it to stand out for all the right reasons, the first step is understanding the principles of effective design.
Educational and inspirational content has a considerable impact on your readers, but design plays a vital role in your blog’s performance as well. A well-dressed blog can maximize your assets and show off your unique style. It’s what grabs a visitor’s attention and makes them want to read on and get to know you better. How your readers experience content on your website directly affects social shares, newsletter subscribers and even sales (if that’s your end-goal). If you’re serious about building a following through blogging, it’s essential you optimize your blog to convert visitors into regular readers, subscribers and paying clients.
Less Is More | Actionable Blog Design Tips
Your blog has to look elegant, be easy to navigate, and show off interesting and informative content. By focusing on these three things, you can make your website much more appealing to your readers. In other words, when in doubt – subtract. That’s the best design advice you’ll ever get. Make it easy on your visitors, and don’t let your blog get too cluttered.
Simplify Navigation | Actionable Blog Design Tips
Visitors should be able to navigate your website without any effort at all, and the content should be organized intuitively. If your visitors want to read posts published on a particular date, would they know where to go? What if they wanted to see all your posts under a specific tag? Since the navigation bars and/or sidebars are visible on each page, the information you decide to feature in these areas has to be meaningful and useful. You should not expect your visitors to make the conscious effort to understand how your website is arranged. It is up to you to make it simple for them.
Make Goal-Driven Design Decisions | Actionable Blog Design Tips
The goal of the design is to get your website to convert visitors towards your goals. That’s it. Everything else comes second. Most blog owners place a shout-out to their newsletter signup form at the top of the sidebar when trying to get their readers to subscribe, for example, which is a great idea — that’s where most visitors will expect it to be.
Consistency Is Vital | Actionable Blog Design Tips
It’s crucial to keep your design elements consistent. For example, if you’re using one button style on one part of the page, make sure you use the same style on the rest of the page and throughout your blog. This helps your visitors find what they’re looking for. Plus, if they see the same button three times on a page, they’ll notice it and think, “I should probably click that.” Seemingly minor features such as clickable titles, prominent “read more” links and the overall style consistency will make or break your blog.
Use 2-3 Fonts, Max | Actionable Blog Design Tips
At most, use one font for your logo, one for your headlines, and one for your body content. Any more and your blog will just look cluttered. Additionally, when choosing fonts for your blog, try to find legible fonts in a readable size. You should also minimize your use of font weights to two or less. For example, use bold for headlines and light or regular for copy. The more font weights you use, the more chaotic it gets for the reader to follow.
Embrace White Space | Actionable Blog Design Tips
Take a step back and see how your writing looks — visually. Pretty it up by adding sub-headings, bulletined and numbered lists, images and lots of white space. Aside from effectively using padding and margins, the best way to embrace white space is to simply get rid of everything that doesn’t add value or contribute towards achieving your goals.