Blogging is an art form that has exploded in the last two decades with the rise of self-publishing and Internet content creation. There isnâ€™t a more frequently used buzzword today than â€œcontentâ€ when it comes to website design and efficacy. This is because thereâ€™s so much information available online and demand for usersâ€™ attention that independent bloggers and businesses alike will do whatever it takes to attract web traffic. Blogs for businesses are becoming increasingly important for maintaining viability on the increasingly complex and information-rich Internet. However, just because your content might be heavy on the industry information and light on entertainment, doesnâ€™t mean that your blog should look boring. Here are four basic design elements that can provide a visually appealing template for your content.
Don’t Paint the Wall White
Business blogs are read by other industry professionals, but youâ€™ll have both customers and professionals visiting your website. Blogging has traditionally been a small time hobby, limited to self-publishing or other types of individual commentary. With the rise of superstar bloggers, though, and the trend of entire websites completely transferring over to blog platforms like WordPress, you canâ€™t survive in todayâ€™s information age without your own blog. Liven up your business blog by making it aesthetically current. Using large photo backgrounds is a great way to capture your visitors’ attention and showcase your merchandise or brand using visual information. Images provide a powerful and instantaneous form of communication, and whether you use a strong splash banner or a photo background thatâ€™s linked with your brand, it will help visitors remember your business.
Balancing Beauty and Brains
A blog’s content is what makes or breaks its success, but a first impression matters substantially to new customers, according to Website Magazine. You can never recover a first impression, so you want to make the best one possible. Determining how to define what makes the right impression for your business, though, takes some serious deliberation. The golden rule is always to balance beauty and brains when it comes respectively to design and content, and a foolproof way to decide where the center lies is by letting content guide the look. In other words, your design should reflect your content in a meaningful way. If your blog entries are dry and technical, having a whimsical, retro font with bright, cartoonish colors isnâ€™t a good match. The contrary moods confuse the reader and convolute your identity. Instead, think about what kind of aesthetic faithfully reflects your businessâ€™s core principles. A blog layout with a retro font would be a suitable match for a vintage clothing business, for example. If youâ€™re in eCommerce, you donâ€™t have as much work to do because you can match your blog layout to your online store layout. There are already lots of stylish options offered by eCommerce platforms like Shopify that are tailored to different industries. You can also directly integrate your blog into your current website. However, be careful that the site design is already optimized to accommodate blog content, which is very different from traditional, static website copy.
Including the Right Elements
Once you decide on the type of layout you think works best for presentation of your content, you need choose functional elements to include on your blog. While elements function as practical features, such as social media widgets and search bars, there are ways to maintain a good design aesthetic. For example, the Teavana blog was praised for placing a prominent search bar at the top of the page and tag filtering options on the right side, all of which make content easy to find. Although having these elements in the same place on your own business blog might not specifically be the right fit for you, the point is to integrate blog elements in a way that makes finding information as simple and user-friendly as possible.
Be Bold to Stand Out
Donâ€™t be afraid to make a bold statement with your blog by investing time to create quality content and use strong images. Although it might provide interesting content and not be directly related to your sales, it will drive traffic and create an interactive relationship with your customers. Therefore, you shouldnâ€™t be afraid to ramp up the design and make it interesting. As of 2012, there were over 644 million websites on the Internet, according to Business Insider. Therefore, you need to do everything possible in order to stand out, even if youâ€™re operating within a specific industry. Using your blog creatively to not only report industry news, but also try to engage your customers and readers in a meaningful way, creates increased interest in your business and what it does. Donâ€™t be afraid to let your blog stand out, because it wonâ€™t upstage your main site. Blogs offer a valuable opportunity for new potential customers to engage with your brand and get to know what youâ€™re all about, something they might not do on their own unless first being drawn in by your content.