Are you frustrated with your current blog design? Are you preparing to launch a new blog, but can’t figure out a design that effectively reflects your goals? Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. While content may be the primary focus for some bloggers, the most successful bloggers are those that spend the same amount of time perfecting the aesthetics.
In order to maximize the efficacy of your Joomla blog, you need to have a plan in place for how you’ll satisfy your users’ demand for simple, aesthetically pleasing sites. Not only is design a significant component of your overall brand message, but it also plays an important role in pushing users through your conversion funnel. While every blog differs in terms of specific goals and outcomes, the following Joomla blog design tips should provide universal value.
1. Cleanup the Sidebar
Have you ever visited a blog with an overly crowded sidebar? It’s intimidating and overwhelming. Sidebars are meant to add value and convenience to your blog, not distract and confuse. Unfortunately, many bloggers don’t know the difference.
Some of the more common sidebar mistakes involve long blog rolls, referencing a long list of tags and keywords, having too many drop down menus, and having a sidebar that’s longer than the actual content.
Sidebars serve a purpose, but they need to be streamlined. The Nutrition Secrets blog is a great example. The sidebar has an opt in box, search bar, brief author section, handful of popular posts, list of recent posts, and a couple social icons. And while that may sound like a lot for a sidebar, it’s displayed in a very simple manner with no distractions.
2. Gently Encourage Users to Sign Up
The second thing to think about is the opt in box. Just as in the Nutrition Secrets example, you also need to consider having a sidebar section that allows users to provide their email address in return for regular offers or updates. This is one of the keys to developing a successful blog. It allows you to build an email list, which can then be leveraged to accomplish much bigger goals. It’s best to place it near the top of the sidebar.
3. Select a Clean and Simple Color Scheme
Your blog’s color scheme is obviously very important. Whereas the wrong color scheme can distract users and turn them away from your blog, the right color scheme can keep them engaged and immersed in your content.
The Help Scout blog is a strong example. The blog has a very clean and simple color scheme with a predominantly white background mixed with bright color pops in the form of congruent rectangles and shapes. While the bright colors grab the user’s attention, it’s the white background that adds consistency and stability.
4. Ensure You’re Using Headers
One of the things bloggers often forget to use is headers. Headers exist for a reason and should be used in every single post. They help break up large sections of text and provide guidance and direction for the eyes. Headers follow a systematic order, starting with the largest (Heading 1) at the top and moving all the way down to smaller headings (Heading 3,4,5, etc.) as you get towards the end.
While quality content will keep users engaged, quality design is what attracts their attention and leaves a lasting impression. If you want to maximize the value of each visit to your blog, attention needs to be given to the latter. Keep the aforementioned tips in mind and do your best to create a simple and pleasing design that adds to your blog’s overall message.