Tips for Starting a Blog #5 – Blog Design

Now that we’ve gone through 4 other tips and have hopefully decided on Blogger or WordPress, it’s time to think about design. If you can afford to spend a little money, I’d fully recommend hiring someone to design your page for you. It truly is worth it to spend the money up front and not have to deal with doing it yourself.

Doing it yourself is possible. For sure. Especially with the options that are available in setting up a Blogger or WordPress site. Whether you have someone else design it or design it yourself, there’s still a few things to think about…and either way, even if you have someone else design it, you’re still going to be set free on this blog at some point and still need to keep some things in mind.

Make your design user friendly. I’m sure you could think of a few sites that make you hit the ‘X’ immediately. What is it about those sites that make you not want to read them? Here are a few things that come to mind…too cluttered, awful colors, no real path for me to follow, music or video starts when it opens, etc. Here are some things to think about to make your design user friendly:

  • Choose your header and logo images carefully. Remember, this is your brand. Do you really want that same character girl that all the other blogs have? There are so many copies of different logos out there. Especially with Mommy Blogs. Find a logo that can truly represent your brand and purchase it so that it is yours and only yours. Your readers need to be able to identify you and they’ll do that through your logo/brand first.
  • Make sure your blog has plenty of ‘white space.’ White space is the spaces between columns, graphics, etc. You don’t have to fill up every nook and cranny with ‘stuff.’
  • Choose colors that are appealing to the average person..or at least not obnoxious. Bright orange, for example, would not be my first choice.
  • Think about what you put in your sidebars. As you get going, you’ll join affiliates, groups, etc. that will all want you to put up some sort of graphic. Really think through what you add in there..is it benefiting your blog or your readers? This is prime real estate…don’t just fill it up with useless ‘stuff.’ You will want to limit the amount of info on your sidebars to make for a better user experience so make sure what you put there is worth it.
  • Make sure you have a search button. It’s very annoying to me to not be able to easily find what I’m looking for. Having a search button available to your user will keep them on your page longer.
  • Make a contact page. You need to have an option for readers to engage with you as well as possible advertisers!
  • Make the navigation simple and straight forward. Think about what your main topics are so that readers can easily navigate your site to find things that interest them.
  • Do not center your text and images. We read left to right…that’s the path that our eye wants to go so align your page that way too.
  • Pick a basic font that is professional and easy to read. This also goes for color and size of font. Yes, Comic Sans is cute and fun but is it your best choice?

There’s a lot to think about when it comes to the beginning design and the aesthetics of your blog. Always keep the reader in mind as you go along in your blogging journey!

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About Dawn

Dawn is a stay at home, homeschooling mother of 4. She writes for Blogging Mom of 4, Mommy Needs Her Coffee and Blogging is a Trip.

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