A good blog design is not just about implementing best web design practices; it involves much more than that. Unlike static websites, a blog incorporates much closer social media integrations to directly facilitate interaction with visitors. This makes the design task a little more difficult.
Each blog is made up of different sections that include content, header, footer, ads, comments and sidebar. These sections form a single unit (web page) but are logically separated from each other.
If your blog visitors can easily identify these sections without getting confused, it means that you have applied the first rule correctly. It does not make the different sections very similar because it will be difficult for visitors to identify them, and they will not be able to see each section as a separate unit.
The design and style implemented for each section should be applied to each web page. Changes in style can lead to confusion that turns your visitors into a bad search experience. Whether it's the main page, static or archives, square the style of each section evenly.
This is very simple. Arbitrary alignment of text and widgets makes the web page look like a deserted yard. Take a look at this blog as well as other blogs and try to see how they all fit.
If you have images and text one below the other on the left, make sure they are aligned perfectly. It's easy to align them almost perfectly and say "it's ok anyway". At the subconscious level, alignment shows professionalism. Do the same with the texts and images that need to be aligned to the right.
During implementation, "honey bowls" look great, but in the long run, they will be the end of your blogging career. It is very tempting to introduce flashy and pompous objects, rotating image galleries and similar elements to provide a richer experience for your visitors.
But behind them, you need very well optimized codes, carefully chosen multimedia plugins and a good hosting server. A good blog design is considered to run fast, with minimal hiccups even when more multimedia objects are running behind the scenes. Below are some guidelines that will help you keep only the essentials on stage:
Avoid flash objects where you can.
While choosing a multimedia plugin, make sure that it passes the performance reference and does not consume too much of the server's resources.
To improve the image of the sections in your theme, use optimized images from the internet instead of CSS + scripts.
A good blog design includes rich integrations of social and media elements to allow easy commenting, bookmarking and subscription to new and popular media platforms. Below is a list to make sure your blog design is ready for social media.
Consider using a third-party commentary system that consists of rich integrations of popular social media services. Some of the most common commenting systems are Disqus and Intense Debate.
If it's related to native commenting systems, use popular social media plugins like Twitter, CommentLuv to respond socially to those who comment on you.
Include bookmark sections just below the post body to receive a maximum number of sharing clicks.
The so-called "social media bars", those that appear at the beginning or end of the pages are irritating but, in some cases, extremely effective. It remains to be seen on your blog whether they work or not. However, be careful not to include too many social media elements. For example, if you have the option to share on Facebook an article from about 6 places located on the same page - it's too much.
Consider posting your last tweet (or last 5) in the header or footer to get more followers on twitter. Today more and more blogs include twitter updates that match the theme in different sections of the blog.
Finally, I advise you to buy a premium WordPress theme. The reason is very simple; in this theme, you will receive a very well optimized and clean code, which runs faster and is flexible enough to meet your design needs. What premium theme should you consider? Well, that's your decision.
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