Blog design tips to make your blog look better
June 1, 2018
We all know how much first impressions count and most people will decide within seconds whether to stay and read your posts or leave and find the information elsewhere.
But how do you design a beautiful blog? If you want to improve the look of your blog, we’re here to help with some blog design tips…
Keep it clean
We’ve all seen blogs that are so busy they almost give you a headache – we bet you didn’t stick around long to read their posts!
You’ll also have probably noticed that many of the biggest blogs are very clean and white and this isn’t a coincidence. A clean, uncluttered page with lots of white space makes the content much easier to read.
The header image should be eye-catching, the text should be easy to read, and it shouldn’t take up too much of the page.
Keep widgets and pop-ups to a minimum otherwise you are at risk of annoying and distracting the user away from your content.
Your layout should be as uncluttered as possible, almost minimalistic in design.
Make your content easy to read
It sounds obvious, but your posts should be easy to read. Remember that most visitors to your blog are likely to be on mobile so your text shouldn’t be too small or in script fonts.
Too many different fonts make a page look very messy and amateur. Use a maximum of 2-3 fonts – sticking to Google Fonts is widely recommended as these are compatible with most devices.
Light text on dark backgrounds is hard to read so try to stick to a white or very light grey background with black text. Light or pastel colour text might look lovely for your headings but it will be difficult to read. You should also always avoid having an image as the page background.
If your posts are quite long, break up the text with headings and bullet points so that your visitors can easily skim the content to see what it is about. Leave enough space between headings and paragraphs so that the text is easy to follow.
Stick to your branding
Hopefully, you will have decided on your logo and branding before you start setting up your blog. If you’ve done this then when you start to create your blog you will already have an idea of the look and feel you’re aiming for.
In keeping with the above point of keeping it clean, you should avoid using too many colours – stick to 2-3 at the most. These colours should flow through your logo, headings, buttons and links so that everything is consistent and on brand.
Stick to the same fonts throughout, whether in headings, the main body or links. Your branding should always be recognisable whatever page of your site you are on.
Use high-quality photos
Poor quality and amateur images ruin a blog and it’s such a shame when you see bad photos distracting from otherwise ok content.
If you’re not a great photographer or don’t have a very good camera, it’s ok to use stock imagery. Wherever you source your blog images from, make sure they are clear and good quality photos.
The imagery you use on your blog should also have a theme and fit in with your branding. Try to always use the same style and size photos within your content so that each post looks the same.
Offer easy navigation
The last thing you want is for your readers to get lost on your blog and give up. Making your navigation as easy to follow as possible will help people to navigate through your site to find related posts and information.
Make sure that your main menu is easily labelled and doesn’t include too many options. Put the main links in this menu such as blog, about, contact and home.
Your logo or header image should be clickable and take the user back to your homepage if they do end up buried in your site.
A blogger’s main aim is to serve relevant and useful information to their readers so make sure you’re showing your visitors as much of your content as possible. Have links to related content at the end of each post and a list of the most recent blog posts in your sidebar.
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Go easy on the ads
We all want to be able to monetise our blogs at some point and one of the easiest ways to do this is to include ads on your blog. However, you don’t want to distract from your content so don’t include too many ads that will make the page look messy and cluttered.
You should also avoid lots of pop-up boxes as these just get on people’s nerves.
Check your blog on different devices
You’ll probably put your blog together using a PC or laptop and will be used to seeing what it looks like on desktop. It’s important to remember that the majority of your readers will be viewing your blog on a mobile – ours is 70% and you can check your stats in Google Analytics.
As you put together your blog design, don’t forget to check it on different devices and different browsers. Get your family and friends to check it for you and let you know if anything looks wrong or hard to read.
If you pick from one of the popular WordPress themes these will be optimised for mobile and should resize for different size screens.
For more tips on optimising your site for mobile, check out our blog post 5 tips to speed up your blog for Google’s new mobile speed update.
Have you been following these blog design tips already or has this post highlighted some design mistakes you’ve been making on your blog?