It’s no wonder. It is us who gives them life. It is us who introduces and shows them off to the world.
In the beginning many of us changed our themes as often as we would change a baby’s clothes – trying to find just the right outfit for the christening.
We nurture our blogs, add our blood, sweat and tears, and when we hit milestones, we celebrate.
And just like with children, we become protective and possessive of your blogs.
Mistakes and all, we’re proud of them. Happy to call them our own.
But what happens when others tell us we should make changes to our blogs?
I’ve had blog authors ask for my opinion on their blogs. In some cases I suggested a simple tweak, and when others asked what I thought of their complete site redesign, I gave my honest opinion, but I let them know, that’s all it is – my opinion.
And my opinion is based on what “I” look for when I first land on a blog.
For example, here are my preferences:
- The content
Is the topic something I’m interested in? Is the author putting an original spin on the subject, or are they just regurgitating old news?
- The “About Me”page
How is the author describing themselves? What can I expect to find on the blog? Do they provide a back story? Pictures?
- Can I find the recent posts and/or the archives?
If I’m interested in the content, I look for recent posts. If they aren’t listed, than I hope to find more of the author’s writings in the archives.
Even if the blog I land on is beautifully designed, if I’m not captivated by what I read, and/or the blog hasn’t met my personal preferences for blog navigation, I don’t stick around.
What I don’t put a lot of weight on:
- The header
I see the header as being a personal choice. For continuity, a photo helps to match the blog title and/or tag line to the content, however, some blog themes don’t use a photo header. I also keep in mind some bloggers are using what comes with the theme and/or are yet to learn how to change the header image.
- How the content is formatted
Although I prefer some white space (not just solid writing), if the content is good, I’ll read it.
- Spelling and grammar
Knowing English is not the first language for some bloggers, and also realizing we’re often too close to the content to catch our own errors, I’ve learned to overlook grammar and/or spelling mishaps.
I know many bloggers (including myself) would like to make a passive income from their blogs. As long as the ads aren’t so distracting they take away from the content, I’m happy.
Now it’s your turn.
What do you look for when you land on a blog for the first time?
Have you ever had someone say your blog could be improved – solicited or not?
Did you change it or leave it as is?
Should constructive criticism be brushed off as “just their opinion”, or should we listen?
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