When people hear the word design, they sometimes think only of making something look good, using colors and graphics to add interest. But on the web, and especially on a blog, design has a purpose: to grab readers when they arrive, make it easy for them to get what they want, and create trust through a consistent and professional look.
A well-designed business blog:
- Uses visual interest to make posts easy to read
- Brands your business in a consistent way
- Places useful information in places where it is easy to find
- Isn't cluttered with things that aren't helping you promote your business
- Makes it easy for readers to do what you want them to do
Good blog design is practical
While there are many elements that go into designing a blog that grabs attention and engages readers, here are seven elements that must be integrated at the outset. You can develop the visual look and feel over time, but start here to begin building relationships, trust and credibility:
- Graphic header with name of blog, tag line and author name
- Email subscribe form
- About page with photo
- Use a variety of media: text, video, audio
- Plenty of white space to make it easy to read
- Links to share your content
- Links for readers to connect on your social networking sites
To illustrate each of these points, I've made a short video showing blogs that incorporate these elements.
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If you would like to study these blogs in more depth, here are the links:
- Mari Smith's blog
- Nuts About Southwest
- Build a Better Blog
- Altitude Branding
- Comcast Voices
- The Social Media Marketing Blog
- Wine Library TV
- Social Media Marketing Strategies
- The Social Media Handyman
- Street Smarts Marketing
What are the essential design elements you think belong in a business blog? Please share your ideas in the comments and link to blogs that illustrate best practices.
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