When it comes to creating a successful blog, there is more to worry about than simply great content. While that is important to your readership and page ranking, it’s more important that readers stay on your page for more than a single post. To do that, you have to have create your optimal layout; one that invites an extended visiting time.
Your blog’s design can be the distinguishing factor that separates you from the vast sea of other weblogs out there. First impressions count and making sure that you have all the elements of a great blog design can ensure that readers will enjoy the content that you present. – SixRevisions.com
Images: elegant themes
All the great content in the world won’t matter if you aren’t smart about placement and style. Blog content layout differs greatly from the traditional writing style, and it’s critical that you lay it out correctly. This will ensure your content is read, digested and enjoyed.
- Left to right: I assume this goes without being said, but human eyes scan from left to right.
- Short paragraphs: Your blog readers can lose their focus at a moment’s notice – a new Facebook notification or flashy advertisement can take them away from your content. Keep it short and to the point.
- Bullet points: When in doubt, use bullets. These ensure easy readability.
- Clean font: Make sure your font is large enough to read, and clean enough to see. Bright pink text on a white background will not bode well for you.
Social Media Buttons
Without readers, your blog is just taking up space in the blogosphere. How do you get readers? Promote your site, and invite others to do the same. Social media is a bloggers best friend, and it’s important that you engage with various sites. When placing social media buttons on your page, there are a number of places they will get the most attention.
- Upper/middle right: This part of your site gets a significant amount of attention, as it’s the natural path our eyes take.
- Before/after your post: Some prefer to place the icons at the top of the page, some at the bottom, and some in both spots. Either way, make sure your post is shareable.
- Traditional: Using traditional icons ensures that your readers will recognize them right away.
- Custom: If you choose to use custom buttons, be sure that they are recognizable. No one will share if they don’t know what sites you’re referring to.
Blogging is about building a community. The most effective way to do this is through commenting. When readers begin having conversations with you and other visitors, you know they are truly engaged in your content. First you need to invite them, and then make the most of this small piece of blog real estate.
- Invite them: Pose a question at the end of each post to get readers thinking.
- Straight forward: Make sure your content form is easy to fill out. Don’t derail interested readers because the form is confusing or time consuming.
- Use it: Invite readers to then subscribe to the following comments and your blog in general. The comment plug-in Disqus does this automatically.
Including all the necessary items in your blog layout is critical to your success as a blogger. If you can maintain successful content, and create your most optimal layout, you can be sure to keep readers around.
About the author: Jessica Sanders is an avid small business writer touching on topics from social media to telemarketing. She writes for an online resource that gives advice on topics including payroll processing for lead generation resource, Resource Nation.