Having great content is not the only way to attract readers, your blog’s design is as important as the quality of the articles you post. You want to offer your readers the best experience possible when they visit your blog because you want to retain them, and convert them into loyal users. You may have written 100, 500 or even more than 1000 high-quality articles on your website. But the question is “What good is having great content if users find difficult to read it?”
Making your blog more user-friendly is a must nowadays. There are numerous things you can do to create a pleasurable experience for your users. Here are some of them.
1. Start with your blog design
Let’s find out more about how your blog design should look.
A clean, simple blog design is exactly what you need to make consistent progress with your page. Research shows that more than 60% of internet users worldwide state that they prefer to interact with pages that are beautifully designed, than with websites with intricate design.
Let’s see how this works for your blog.
You spend precious time to create quality content, but it’s of no use if you post it on an ugly-looking blog. A clean design will make your articles stand out and will make your text a pleasure to read.
The best blogs on the internet are nice to visit because their design guides you around, and teaches you how to interact with certain features.
Colour, fonts and font sizes:
Here is a secret, people have started to hate white font on black background. Why? No one can say, but it’s something real, and you have to transform your blog into a more artsy-fartsy one. Make sure the look of the page does not hurt your readers’ eyes.
When it comes to colour, choose something soothing to the eye. As long as you don’t go with black backgrounds with white fonts or vibrant contrasting colours, you are good to go.
Design trends are moving towards larger fonts because they make easier to read long content pieces. If you are using WordPress, Solo Pine and StudioPress are readers’ favourite themes.
2. Simplify your navigation
Imagine you are a hiker in the woods, the only thing that keeps you on the right track is navigation. Navigation is important both in real life-situations and on the internet; it can be the maker or breaker of your blog.
Navigation makes easier for your users to find the piece of information they are looking for. In addition, it allows search engines to follow links to your blog posts. Regardless of how many articles you have posted on your blog, and how many you plan to upload, you should make sure your navigation is as simple as possible.
Your blog’s header should contain only the navigational links and the logo of the website. If you have a banner ad or other similar elements in the header area, you should remove them. Move your links to the social media profiles in the footer section.
Three important features readers use when accessing the blog:
The search box, categories and tags are the features that help your readers narrow down the results.
- The search box allows users to search for a piece of content by a keyword.
- The categories should be created as general subjects that cover a wider niche of topics.
- Tags should be specific in nature, simple descriptions on the main idea of the content.
3. Improve your content
Your content is the one that makes your blog page truly-impressing. But you should constantly look for new ways to improve it, and make it even more impressing. Your target should be to create content accessible to a wider audience, easy to read and understand. Do research when you choose the subject of the articles.
If you lack information, don’t be afraid to use means like online classes, informational platforms, or video tutorials to improve your knowledge. A well-documented piece of content will keep your readers engaged.
Other ways to create super user-friendly content are:
- Links to relevant external sources
- Don’t use over-complicated phrases or words
- Use quote boxes and bullet points
- Break up the text with graphics, screen captures, videos, and images
- Create short paragraphs
4. Declutter the sidebar
You should now turn to your blog’s sidebar; you can optimise it to enhance the user experience.
Some famous blogs prefer not using a sidebar because they think that it can improve conversions and remove distractions. You should experiment with having a clean sidebar or removing the sidebar, you will see no significant variations in conversions. A study case states that from 1000 people who visit your page, maybe 4 of them click on your sidebar.
If you want your content to be the focus on the page then remove the sidebar, period.
If you decide to keep it, use it wisely. It should contain only the essential features of the website, because too many things placed there can distract your readers’ attention.
Elements you can include in the sidebar:
- A banner to a product you sell or recommend
- A list of recommended blogs, or latest articles, or best articles
- A small text about the author, yes about YOU
- An email opt-in form with incentive
5. Maybe you should change the theme
Oops, you crossed fingers not to see this recommendation in the article. Sometimes this is the only change you have to bring to your blog to make it more user-friendly. Go with a mobile-friendly theme, you can find examples on StudioPress.
The theme should feature easy-to-find call-to-action buttons, a navigation bar perfectly placed not too low, or too high, and a minimal design, but not too minimal.
How can you get a minimal but not too minimal theme? Well, you have a piece of content, a pop-up and a call-to-action. How do you arrange them on the page? You use a pop-up as a welcome mat, you insert a scroll-down message, place something awesome inside the content, and something even more awesome below the content.
If your current theme does not have these features, change it, it’s simpler than trying to update it.