Content is an important aspect to any blog. Without your material, no one would visit the site. However, it takes more than excellent content in order to encourage visitors to remain on the blog. Your design techniques will also play a major role in the professionalism of your website. If someone has to spend a few minutes sifting through the activity of the page in order to find the content, he or she will move on to something that is easier to read.
Too Much Activity Can Drown Out Your Blog’s Content
All too often, blog developers will saturate their websites with links and ads in the hopes of making money. While it’s possible to create a successful website regarding your niche, you need to focus more on the content rather than ways to monetize your pages. If the material can’t be delivered to your target audience, it won’t matter what advertisements or affiliates you have.
What Can You Do to Express Professionalism?
Most bloggers just want to connect with others and share their stories. Others want to develop a professional appearance in order to engage potential clients, customers or just make the experience even greater. Regardless of why you have a blog, you’ll increase your traffic by enhancing the way it appears and performs. Here are a few things you may want to consider.
Too Many Images
If your site is blanketed with various images, it can be distracting from the content you’re trying to deliver. While imagery is a valuable aspect for keeping the attention of the visitor, too much could take away from the content. Unless you’re providing several images to demonstrate a “How-to” article or DIY materials, you want to use images sparingly. Personally, I’ll leave a site if I can’t find the material I am looking for through the over abundance of images. From my viewpoint, sites like this lack professionalism and are more personal – which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, I hate digging through images in order to find the content I was looking for.
Affiliate Marketing Additions
You don’t need 50 or so banners from affiliate marketing campaigns in order to be successful. In fact, too many of these ads can take away from the content just as easily as over-saturation of images. How many sites have you visited where 10 or so ads were flashing in your face when you were trying to read the site’s content? It absolutely drives me batty and I will look for the answers I need elsewhere.
If you know your target audience, you’ll already understand which affiliate marketing campaigns will work the best. If one is not performing as you’d like, remove it and try something new. Your website shouldn’t look like the side of a Nascar racer covered in sponsorship tags. You want to encourage repeat visits, not scare individuals away.
Layout of the Site
Your actual layout of the site should be easy to manage regardless of what resolution the visitor is using. Unfortunately, I haven’t had a chance to buy the new version of Artisteer to create a mobile-responsive site for WriterSanctuary.com. It’s high on my priorities though. And it should be for you as well. Responsive templates will help your mobile device users remain on the site as the content is easier to read. Your site has to look good on both desktop and mobile units if you want to exude a layer of professionalism.
Outside of mobile resolutions, your content needs to be obvious. If a person has to scroll down in order to find the content that was displayed in Google, then you have a problem. It’s not the ads that are attracting visitors. Your content needs to be of top priority. Don’t hide your material under a menagerie of bells-and-whistles.
Plugins and Widgets
Content management systems such as WordPress and Joomla have a very long list of add-ons and widgets that can accentuate the blog. However, too many of these may take away from the content as well. Add widgets that compliment the niche of your website. If you want to add your Pinterest images to your WordPress computer blog, make sure you’re displaying images of computer technology. Otherwise, it is a waste of space.
While you may believe that a certain widget would compliment the site, you need to consider what your target audience is looking for. When developing a site to encourage success, you need to focus on who you are trying to attract – not what you think would be nice. You might think that a stock ticker on your cloth diaper site is great, but would your target audience have the same belief? Understanding who is actually visiting the site can help you attain a greater degree of professionalism by offering features they would most likely use.
It all boils down to your content being the most important aspect of your site. While you may be trying to monetize the experience and express professionalism, your efforts will be futile if the material isn’t easy to read or find. It takes a great deal of work to create a successful blog and you shouldn’t assume that visitors want to feel like they are looking through the coupon section of a newspaper.