It's Keren from Free Pretty Things, and I am SO thrilled Renee asked me to be here today!
Today, I'll be giving you a few tips on how to make your blog a little more appealing and a few other tidbits that I hope you might find useful. Here we go!
Blog Tips/DOs and DON'Ts:
1. Use the New Blogger Designer Templates. The Simple Template is my favorite. Be sure to choose the LAST option. Example shown below.
2. If you choose to have a Background on your blog, try to have the LEAST amount of clutter on your sidebars. You don't want your readers to feel overwhelmed when they come to your blog. BUT sometimes, you HAVE to have lots of buttons and information on your sidebars. If that is the case, do try to leave your blog without a background or at least a very LIGHT colored background.
3. Try to fight the urge of having music on your blog. Why you ask? Well, I can't speak for all bloggers out there but as for me, I do my Blog surfing Late at night or during my little girl's nap time. SOMETIMES, I forget to turn my speakers off and while I'm clicking way to view your latest fabulous post, I and my sound asleep toddler (that took 2 hrs to finally put down, BTY) are frightfully startled and awaken by your most favorite rocking tunes. Not cool. Did you know some readers will actually hear your music start, and as quickly as possible click off your page and NEVER return Just because your blog is "one of those blogs". Sad, but true :(
4. If you have a 3 column blog, try to keep your 2 sidebars only on ONE side of your blog. This is just because its easier on the eyes and readers only have to look to one side to view all of your information ... This is especially true if you are using your Blog as a way to bring revenue to your home. Your Sponsors will get Lots more click this way, because everything is nice and neat and Easy to view.
5. Take advantage of the New Blogger Templates Footer Layouts. Example shown below.
6. Let your Readers be able to find things easily on your blog. (A) Always have LABELS on ALL your post. NOT a MILLION of them but, essential ones. (B) Have a Search Bar!
7. Have a good ABOUT(ME) section.. Most readers will actually go to that section FIRST before reading any of your posts. If they don't like what they "see" they will just click off and forget all about you.
8. When you visit a new Blog and become a new follower or theirs, DO NOT Demand them to follow you back in a comment. It's just not nice.
9. Take good pictures! You dont have to have a fancy Camera to do so... Use LOTS of indirect Natural light and Never Use a Flash.
10. My Tips are just a few to get you started.. Here are 3 of my Favorite Blog Posts Regarding this Subject. Total Must Reads: 15 Basic Blogging Dos and Don'ts, Blogging 101: “Dos” and “Don’ts”, Top 10 Blogging Dos and Don’ts
Tips on How to use MY Freebies: The Printables are pretty self explanatory. Save to you computer, print and enjoy! :) Whenever I post an image as a PNG file, you could use THIS tutorial on how to add them to your pictures. You don't have to have a fancy program like Photoshop to use any of my images. Programs like pixlr.com and sumopaint.com are a wonderful way to start playing around and learning new techniques. You could also visit MAKING CUTE BLOGS to find LOTS and LOTS of blog tutorials!! Awesome site. And last but certainly not least, Shabby Blogs has wonderful Blog Tutorials and will be adding lots more in the near future! :)
Really hope all of this info helps you grow grow GROW!! :)