These days, most people flock to Twitter and Instagram to get their social media fix. Yet, the humble blog still has an important place in the social media hierarchy.
Blogs can be a great tool for drawing new users to your website, whether its for gaining knowledge and information or staying abreast of the latest trends. More importantly, a blog gives you an opportunity to connect with your clients and customers.
Starting a successful blog can prove challenging, especially when it comes to the design end of things. Fortunately, we have a few tips you can use to make your blog look and feel great.
Use a Pro-Tier Domain Name
If you’re just starting your own blog, then chances are you’ve signed up with Blogger, WordPress.com or any number of other free blogging platforms. The problem comes when you try to point visitors to your blog. These platforms don’t automatically give you a professional domain name, so you’re stuck with something like “www.blogger.com/yourblog” until you configure your own domain name.
Needless to say, your domain name is a part of your brand. When visitors and potential customers look at the URL on the address bar, you’ll want that address to accurately reflect your brand.
When creating your own blog, it’s always best to use your own hosting and set up blogging software on your own. That way, you’ll have free rein to use your own domain name. If you want to stick with your current free blogging platform,
Trim Your Color Palette
Too much of anything can be a bad thing – especially when it comes to color. And as much as you’d want to use bright and eye-catching colors to draw users’ attention, using too many colors can sometimes draw attention for all the wrong reasons.
Using a smorgasbord of colors can leave your visitors feeling overwhelmed and confused, especially if there’s little method to the chaos. Instead, you’ll want to limit your color palette to just two or three choices with a strong focus on the primary color.
Also, consider color psychology as you make your choices. Different colors evoke different types of emotions in viewers and that fact is backed up by countless scientific studies. Here’s a quick example of how most people associate the following colors:
- Red: Passion, excitement, anger, warmth, romance
- Yellow: Youth, energy, friendliness, positivity
- Blue: Wisdom, calm, serenity, awareness
- Gray: Seriousness, efficiency, practicality
- Purple: Luxury, quality, authenticity
When it comes to logos, the psychology behind colors is especially important. After all, think about the emotions you want your visitors to experience when they first encounter your logo. The right logo color not only complements your logo design but also sends a strong signal as to how you’d want others to perceive your logo.
Eliminate Visual Clutter
Imagine visiting a store only to find everything on the shelves – if it’s even on shelves to begin with – in disarray. Whether it’s in real life or on the Internet, clutter can be frustrating to deal with. A blog with a cluttered design can easily turn off visitors and perhaps even turn them off from your brand completely. That’s why eliminating the visual clutter is one of the most impactful things you can do to improve your blog’s design.
Optimizing your blog for maximum readability is one way to banish visual clutter. Making the text as clean and easy to read as possible not only helps from a usability standpoint, but also makes the blog more appealing to the eye. Not only should you consider your font choices carefully, but also text placement. For instance, centering the text makes it easier for eyes to follow on long reads.
Eliminating clutter also means smart use of white space. Not only does it present a cleaner aesthetic to your visitors, but it also makes navigating and reading the blog a bit easier. In addition, it becomes much easier for visitors to find the content they’re looking for. Keep in mind that “white space” doesn’t always have to be white in color. Instead, think of it as open or “negative” space that’s free from any visual noise.
Practice the “Rule of Two” for Fonts
Speaking of fonts, it’s a good idea to stick to two fonts for your blog. Any more than that and you risk adding visual clutter, not to mention making it harder for visitors to read. Using just a single font puts your blog at risk of seeming bland and uninteresting.
Like colors, there’s also a psychology behind a typeface. Different fonts can invoke different feelings and emotions in readers, so it’s important to choose fonts that not only complement each other, but also complement the blog design.
For instance, sans-serif fonts project a clean, modern and objective look and feel, whereas serif fonts invoke tradition, respectability and comfort. Script fonts offer an elegant, creative feel while display fonts are the most expressive of all, with a wide range of emotions ranging from playfulness to amusement.
Make Mobile a Priority
It’s hard to imagine a time when smartphones weren’t everywhere. So, it’s not shocking to learn that over half of the world’s Internet traffic comes from smartphones and other mobile devices, with that figure set to increase as time goes on. That means any experience you want your visitors to enjoy should also be mobile-friendly.
Mobile responsiveness is the key to making your visitors want to come back for more. Fortunately, it’s easier than ever to find blog themes that incorporate mobile-friendly features into their design. For starters, responsive menus allow mobile users to interact with links in a non-obtrusive way.
Don’t Forget About the Imagery
Blogs aren’t just about text. Images can also help propel or hold back a blog. That’s why high-quality images are a must when it comes to blog design.
Not everyone is a professional photographer who can capture great images. Fortunately, that’s where stock photo websites ride to the rescue. These sites offer a vast array of high-quality stock images you can download, edit and resize to suit your blog’s needs. Most stock photo websites require you pay royalties, either for every download or as part of a subscription. However, plenty of sites offer royalty-free imagery.
With a little luck and a lot of hard work, you can make your next blog a stunning success. These tips should help point you in the right direction if you have any doubts about your blog’s design. Keep in mind that your blog ultimately reflects on your brand, so don’t hesitate to put your best foot forward.