I look at my blog multiple times a day every single day, which could go one of two ways: I get used to, and maybe even a bit bored with the way things look or it's an impetus to make small changes to constantly make it better. I sheepishly admit that I fall under the former camp, and as much as I'd like to make small tweaks here and there, I usually just end up focusing on trying to pump out the posts instead.
I recently took a minimal amount of time to make some small aesthetic changes, and boy does it make the site look better, and I feel significantly better about my small effort. If you want to make some tiny improvements too that you can easily do yourself, here's a few that you may want to consider:
Redo (or Create) a Tagline
Your tagline may be feeling a bit stale, or you may not even have one. Take a few minutes to scroll through your content and glance over your “about” section, contemplating what your site may be saying it's all about, and jot down some key words and phrases that may quickly define it. Your tagline is an instant mission statement, and it really should reflect what your site provides in a nutshell, just like what an “elevator pitch” is supposed to do. If you are pretty content with your current one, consider trying a different font, font size, color, or even alignment to give it a slightly updated feel.
Clean Up Your Sidebar
It's kind of amazing how stuff can kind of just…accumulate there! On a recent sidebar cleanup job, I had some lousy ads that were so far down that they weren't garnering many clicks that I got rid of, as well as badges, links, and associations that I was no longer belonging to. You can also make sure that the alignment, border color, and size of the widgets in your sidebar are uniform to brush up the look.
Search for Broken Links & Highlight Content
Depending on how much content you have, it could take an eternity if you went through ALL of your content looking for broken links, so I'd recommend starting with the “periphery” links, such as everything on your homepage in posts, the sidebar, and anywhere else you may have text or images prominently on display and going to a link, followed by your “about,” “press,” or any other tabs/pages you have. Products discontinue, sites go out of business, things happen! Whatever is in your control to update or change, depending on how much time you have, may make your site a better experience for your reader.
Also, there may be some call outs that you may want to draw attention to, such as subscribing to your newsletter, so you may want to make sure the text is bold for that entity, and you may decide that your posts will be easier to follow if you bold key words within the posts as well. Give it a try and preview it, and see if it works for you. You can also give it a twist by making the bold color something other than black, perhaps one of colors found in your blog name or design. Just give it a good test to make sure that the writing is legible in that hue against your background.
Update Your Icons
From your social media buttons to your gravatar it may be time to put up a new image, or try a different style of buttons to pique some interest. When was the last time you added these items or updated them? For me, I tend to let it go way too long, so updating my gravatar photo was loooong over due. If you have a bar somewhere on your site of your social media buttons, chances are that it's there via a plugin, which most likely has other style options for it. You could also customize your social share buttons within your posts, editing which ones are shown or changing the orientation or size.
What small, easy tweaks have you made to give your blog an updated look and feel?
[Image credit: Shutterstock.com]