Whether you’re looking to make money online, share your thoughts with the world, or establish some sort of creative outlet, blogging is an ideal medium.
However, successful blogging isn’t just about slapping a few paragraphs together and clicking the “publish” button. When starting a blog, you also have to think about design.
Here are a few tips and concepts to create a beautiful blog.
1. Minimalism is In
In case you haven’t noticed, the popular design trend in 2016 is minimalism. Gone are the days where crowded layouts with lots of information ruled. Today, internet users find relief in websites and blogs that deliver only the information they need. The world is noisy enough and your blog shouldn’t make things louder. Instead, it should present an attractive and coherent user experience that keeps visitors coming back for more.
“Think of what’s necessary to the content and function of your website,” designer Cameron Chapman says. “Then focus on only those things, and omit anything that doesn’t directly contribute to either the content or function.” Ultimately, you should end up with a lot of negative space.
2. Customizable Templates are Your Friend
The great thing about web design in 2016 is that you don’t have to design and develop your blog from scratch. There are thousands of templates on the internet – many of which are free – and all you have to do is find one that fits your style.
You do, however, want to look for customization features. Some templates only let you switch out things like colors and images, whereas others give you the ability to move features around, add in new ones, and delete the elements that you don’t want. While you may be happy with the template as is, try to find ones that are highly customizable. This will come in handy down the road.
3. Nail the Sidebar
One aspect of blog design that many bloggers forget about is the sidebar. This is the section on the side of the page (usually the right-hand side) that contains sticky elements. While it’s only a small part of your site, it has a tremendous impact on your overall design and layout. Instead of overcrowding it with unnecessary elements, stick to the basics – such as a brief bio, links to past posts, and an opt-in form.
4. Implement a Visible Opt-in Form
Speaking of opt-in forms, spend some time designing a sleek, yet noticeable box that will help you capture monetizable leads. You can place it in your sidebar, the header, or even use a pop-up form.
“Not only does your opt-in form have to get noticed, it also has to be something that your audience actually wants,” says blogger Galen Mooney. “You want your messaging to resonate so your audience can’t wait to join your list.”
5. Think About Colors and Typography
Finally, turn your attention toward the finer details, like color scheme and typography. These are little details that may seem inconsequential, but they actually have a substantial impact on how people feel about your blog. Study color theory and you’ll see that certain colors produce very specific emotions. Typography also has a significant impact on conversions. Pay attention to details like these and you’ll be ahead of the game.
Stagnant Design is Bad Design
Designing an attractive blog is less about sitting down for a few hours one weekend and hammering it out, and more about ongoing maintenance and continual tweaking. Design trends change, new tools emerge, and technologies evolve – make sure your design is always up-to-date with the times.
Stagnant design is bad design and you should ensure your blog is attractive in order to keep visitors engaged.
Featured photo credit: Pexels.com via static.pexels.com