I started off blogging as a teenager, turning to her Livejournal (or ellejay as we used to call it back in the day) to rant about the meaningless woes of my teenage life. Slowly, blogging became a part of my life and eventually, the more I started writing for fashion blogs and e-zines, I began to make my blog seem more “professional” and suited towards a specific niche market. It has been a huge learning journey for me and there have been many hits and misses along the way. Just to name a few, we all had the horrible cluttered background or the white-on-black layout faux pas.
When the leading ladies of Blog Trends suggested coming up with a weekly blogging tips series, I was more than happy to contribute! Primarily since I know how hard it was for me when I first started off blogging and didn’t have anyone to turn to or get advice from.
For the first part of this series, I’m going to share some of my tips for a user-friendly fashion blog – tips that I have noticed by reading some great fashion blogs and things that I tweaked on my own blog over time, etc. Here it goes!
1. Simple Layout.
This is probably the single most important thing that every fashion blogger needs to keep in mind. A simple, clean and minimalistic layout makes it so much easier for readers to navigate through your blog and is also so much easier for you to maintain. Try to avoid fanciful backgrounds and colorful fonts; go right back to the basics and stick to black and white because they are so much easier on the eyes. Remember, for layouts, less is more!
2. Organization is Key.
When new readers stumble upon your blog, you want them to be able to easily navigate through your different categories of posts. The best way to do this would be through a good tagging system – tag all your posts appropriately in different categories for easy access.
If you’re not one for adding tags to posts, how about creating separate pages (Outfits, DIYs, Trends, Opinions, Style Reports to name a few) so that readers can find what they want to find quickly? Then, people are eager to read more! Your blog is pretty much like your room or your office or even your closet! You need to be organized for you to use it well, and for others to use it well as well.
3. About Page.
So many bloggers forget about this but this is a really important part of your presentation! An about page doesn’t have to be a confession of all your nitty-gritty likes and dislikes, but it is a great way for you to start building some kind of fledgling relationship with your readers. As a blogger, you want to be able to build a good rapport with your followers to ensure a constant readership. More so, as a reader myself, the about page is the first page I like to see, just so that I get an idea of what the blogger is like.
4. Simple Language.
Let’s face it, most of us who are readers don’t really know much fashion jargon. Remember that your target audience is the average, middle class demographics, and just like you and me, they probably don’t know any complicated, fashion-related terms, either. Keep it simple and use every day words. If you do want to get going with the fashion lingo, explain what it means so that everyone can get something out of it and learn something new. Otherwise, readers feel confused about what the blogger is trying to say.
5. Have a Personal Touch.
This can be quite the contentious topic because bloggers are always debating about how personal their blogs should be, whether there is a need for bloggers to reflect some of their personal opinions, life stories, and so on. Personally, I feel that I’d like to share a few anecdotes in my blog posts, just so that readers have something to connect with. Of course, that being said, there is no need to share your whole life story, unless that is what your blog is for you. Pick the right amount of balance between being professional and carving out a personal touch. Maintaining a blog and striking the right chord will work wonders.
I hope these few simple and easy tips will help you all to have a more reader-friendly blog. See you guys again next week!