The way your blog is designed can really have an impact on your blog and the views it receives. Since it is the first thing a person notices when they visit your blog, it can really effect their decision on whether or not they feel that your blog looks appealing enough to scroll down the page and actually read the posts. While the design itself isn't an active contribution to your content and what your blog has to offer, it's a given that someone will find an organized, well-designed more appealing than a messy, boring, all-over-the-place design. But, designing your blog requires some knowledge of HTML + CSS coding, and a lot of people don't know how to do this, that's why paying someone to professionally design your blog is a possible option. Unfortunately, some may find that this is a bit pricey, including me! That's why I've put hours and hours into learning basic coding and finding out what makes a blog's design look most appealing, so I can share 10 tips for self designing your blog here with you all who are either just starting your blog, trying to find a way around paying expensive prices to have your blog professionally designed, or simply just needing a few pointers!
Before you begin anything else, always back up your blog and your template, that is so important in order for you to not lose anything important. After this, before you start designing, make sure you pick a theme for your blog that fits your you and content. For instance, if you have an urban style, design your blog around that, with more "urban" features, which may mean more monochrome colors and bolder, simplistic fonts. If you have an urban style and your content on your blog reflects that, it wouldn't be the best idea to design your blog with a rustic or vintage style. That will mislead whoever is viewing your blog, and it will seem like you're confused on what you're trying to show on your blog. If you don't have a certain specific style or content type, designing your blog with just a simple white background and a black font for your header is always a good go-to, because it keeps things looking clean and organized, putting more of a focus on your content.
Blogs like The Sartorialist and Native Fox keep a very clean, simple, and organized design and layout going on their blogs. These styles can fit just about every blog, and it offers for the reader to pay special attention to the features included in your blog. I think these are especially good if you're main focus is street style and outfit posts.
In order to keep a good consistent theme and flow going throughout your blog's design, it's good to keep your amount of colors and fonts limited, so your blog will have a clean, organized, professional look. When choosing your colors, I recommend keeping it limited to 2-3 colors, keeping 1-2 a neutral or monochrome color, so that your other 1-2 will be your main "pop of color" on your blog. If you're unsure of what colors to pick or just want to keep a black and white look, that's completely okay! If anything, I think that can sometimes be better, because this way your main color and focus will be shown through your photographs and posts, which should be ultimately the main focus of your readers' attention. Same goes for fonts, it's good to pick only 2-3 fonts, one font being for your header and bigger titles used on your blog, one font for your sidebar, and the last one for your text. It's important for any well designed blog, newsletter, magazine, or anything else to have clear, legible fonts that complement each other well, and it can sometimes be tricky to decide which fonts look best together, so I found this helpful chart which I placed above to help aid you when choosing your blogs fonts.
This step may be a little difficult if not familiar with how to create graphics on programs like photoshop. Your header is a very important part of your blog and can also be looked at as your blog's logo if it doesn't already have one. It doesn't have to be complex, but just your blog's name with a good font of your choice over a white background should be fine in most cases. Along with your header, you should have a navbar underneath with links to your blogs different sections and most important spots, like your about, contact, and blog's different sections. This could be the different posts that you publish put into their categories, like "DIY" or "Outfits". This is useful for readers who want to look back on certain posts of yours, or just are interested in browsing through one specific category of posts or another. I didn't know how to make navbars for the longest time, and I was so confused on how it was even possible to create an image with links in it that go to certain pages and sites. But, with a little bit of googling, I found the website where you can make them here, and it is honestly the easiest thing ever. Just create the image of the navbar itself in Photoshop, then upload it to this site and create the links! It generates a HTML code at the end that (for Blogger users, not sure about Wordpress or any other site) you'll insert underneath your headers code in your custom HTML box at the top of your blog. It is so simple, and something that you must have on your blog!
Whether the images are in your sidebar, or part of your latest post, it's best to re-size your photos the way you want prior to uploading, because it makes everything look so much better. Having 5 ads in your sidebar of all different widths is going to look a bit sloppy, unless it's a deal where you have one ad with a width of 250 px for example, and then two underneath that are 125 px side by side. That would add up to 250, and the widths would all be the same. And I don't really know exactly why images all look the best re-sized to the same widths, but in my opinion I think it's another big contributor to the whole organization thing. It looks more professional, and it's just something I've noticed to look nice on a blog over the last few years.
If you're wanting to do some further reading on blog design tips and are looking for some good sites that guide you towards putting together your perfect blog look, here are a few recommended sites that I use and that I've found while in the process of putting together this little write up:
Hope you enjoyed, thanks for reading!