Basic Blog Designs
Regardless of whether you have chosen to have your blog hosted or are self-hosting; are using a free or premium template, there are several elements to all blog layouts.
Home or Landing Page:
This is the page everyone sees when they first come to your blog or website. Keep it clean and uncluttered so that your targeted audience can navigate quickly without being overwhelmed with a lot of links or options.
Profile or About You Page:
This page should include a clear or professional head shot, also a statement or the purpose of your blog. You can actually create two “About” pages, one can be about you the author, and the other can be about the blog.
All blogs have posts, these are the the entries you write and publish, with the most recent post being displayed first. At the bottom there are clickable links for “older posts” or “previous posts” so that readers can navigate through your blog.
Comments are what makes your blog interactive, they are what helps you understand your audience’s reaction to what you have written. It shows that you value your readers and their opinion. You can turn off the ability for people to leave comments, however, if you do, you may turn off readers.
Don’t be discouraged if you don’t initially get a lot of comments, stay committed and over time you will.
Categories or labels are great ways in which to identify your posts and it also helps readers find others in the same category, i.e. family, recipes, health and wellness.
Most blogs have more than one column, and the most included information on a blog’s sidebars are your picture, contact info, social media icons, subscription info, categories or labels, links to your archives, links to recent comment or popular posts as well as ads.
Try not to clutter up your sidebar, less is more, unless you have started monetizing your blog.
This helps readers find older posts and are divided by year or month. Archives are useful for search engine optimization (SEO) because every post you ever wrote will be available for years.
Your blog’s header is similar to a newspaper’s masthead. It covers the top of your blog and usually includes your blog’s name, slogan and logo or an image. You can create your own header or hire a designer but it’s what distinguishes your blog from the millions of others.
Your blog’s header appears on every page so it becomes very recognizable and just a unique as you are.
The footer spans along the bottom of your blog and may contain the following information: Copywrite or Disclosure Statements; Terms and Conditions or Privacy Statements; your email address; contact information; links to other resources; feeds from other blogs you may be following.
Not everyone will scroll down to the bottom of your blog so keep critical info in the sidebar or in the header especially your “follow me” social media icons.
Let’s Chat: What are your “must haves” when designing your blog?