User experience is something often overlooked by many beginner bloggers who tend to be more concerned with growing their blog’s views. The thing is, how pleased the visitors are with your website design also counts towards search engine optimization (SEO) merits. What this means is that certain blog layout elements work well in conjunction with content in order to bring and retain more users.
You might think initially that content does most of the heavy lifting; however, it’s more like a 50/50 split between it and website design itself. After all, the most dominant sensory organ of human beings is sight; it just so happens that anything visually pleasing or convenient tends to be remembered better than anything they’ve read or watched.
To that end, blog layout elements allow you to tap into the limitless potential of user psychology to boost your website’s growth. So, it certainly pays to ensure that your blog is both beautiful and convenient, not just brimming with content. To help you, we’ve compiled a list of blog layout elements that your visitors will sure thank you for including.
Have you ever wanted to search for something on a new website you just found and disappointingly discovered that you can’t? This can be problematic for websites with multiple pages full of content. Going through each and every one of them is something you’re not going to be willing to do. The same can be said for any visitor on your website.
That’s why a search bar does wonders for people who are looking for specific content, images, or details on your website. For better results, you’ll want to place this search bar somewhere visible like the header or sidebar of a page. You’ll find plenty of plugins for a custom search bar and function or better yet, have your website builder include the thing.
Social sharing buttons
In addition to immensely helping you with content, page, or site views, sharing buttons are also something your visitors will always look for. If they find your content compelling or significant enough, their first usual instinct is to share it. Other times, they might also do it as a way of bookmarking your specific content.
The twist is that you have to optimize your social sharing buttons for mobile devices, not just desktops. That’s because most of the people who read and watch stuff online today usually do it on their phones. So, if you find out that your website’s mobile version has lackluster social sharing buttons, that’s a problem you’ll want to address quickly. Again, plugins can help you with this.
Can you remember the last time you read a newspaper and enjoyed it? Us neither. Newspapers aren’t exactly easy on the eyes– so much is going on in one page. Now, take a look at a page on your website, if you see that it looks quite similar to a newspaper where everything is jampacked and there’s nearly no empty space, that’s a negative for your users.
Thanks to the rapid rise in popularity of Japanese minimalism, people now prefer sleeker and cleaner designs. Moreover, empty spaces on a website allow a reader or viewer to focus on the content they’re consuming. It’s important not to cram everything on one page or if possible, use fewer words or hard and etched details for design elements. This way, there are fewer distractions.
Custom header and footer
When you go to a website, the header is typically the first thing you see. That is why it’s one of the most crucial presentation pieces that a blog or website can have. First impressions are everything after all when it comes to visual design. That means having a header that is uniquely yours and catches the attention of the visitors is always recommended.
Consequently, you’ll still want to remind your visitors that they’re on your website especially when they’ve scrolled down to the bottom of the page. This is a job for a footer. Really, you can’t make a footer without making your header first as the design will have to be complementary. Thankfully, most WordPress themes allow you to customize your own, just make sure to put your heart into it.
As we stated earlier, our reptilian brains respond better to visual stimuli than something that has to be processed with lingual literacy. Images are simple better conveyors of messages than words. Hence, utilizing a combination of both in your content or website layout is key to grabbing a visitor’s attention.
Moreover, each and every featured image you select for your content to appear on the archives or on the content feed on the front page of the site dictates how and why your visitors will click on it and give it their time. It’s a similar effect to purchasing a novel or book based on how visually appealing its cover is; it helps visitors judge what they’re getting into.
Email and RSS subscription
Not having any of these two blog layout elements might as well be crippling your site and SEO. The longer your blog stays online, the more your loyal subscribers will be. You’ll want to treat them right and give them the opportunity to tune in to each and every content you publish.
Both the email and RSS feed subscription lets them know what each and every content you’ve released. This way, you can sustain your website traffic with return visitors. It also saves them the trouble of having to type in your domain address to search for new content manually. You can find plenty of plugins for this function.
Blog content card layout
Despite how alluring your featured images can be, some users just won’t bite and will still be left wondering what the content is all about. Sometimes an image or title alone is not enough to let users know what the article is about. Turning your content into quickly digestible blog card layouts for that matter is a perfect solution.
If you’ve ever been to websites like Pinterest, you’ve probably seen some articles in the form of images with concise word information that lead to the website itself. Blog card layouts are similar to those.
One of the most annoying aspects of browsing in mobile or even in desktops is small font size or even an impractical font style. Not only will this give the readers a headache but also worsen your website’s bounce rate and drive them away. Small font size can shorten an article and make it appear less of a chore to read but at the cost of legibility.
You’ll have to find a balance between legibility and length in order to best cater to your more visually-challenged visitors. For the desktop website versions, this can be easy to fix. For mobile, however, different screen sizes and layouts can prove challenging. Make sure to coordinate well with whoever is converting your website to a mobile version.
Hopefully, your visitors’ user experience will have improved because of these blog layout elements.