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How To Make a User Friendly Blog For More Conversions

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How To Make a User Friendly Blog For More Conversions

Blogging is not just about writing great stuff and optimizing it for SEO etc . Blogging has a much more “Community” feel to it and hence requires you, the blogger, to make sure that your community is happy with your blog. People, regular readers are the heart of any blog, without them it is like Christmas without Santa, and it’s a role of a Blogger, to convert one time traffic into regular readers. No doubt, it’s your high quality content, that will make the most out of it, but there are many other things and elements which you need to take care of for offering a user friendly Website environment.

User friendly Website

Design is one of the big reason of a Website popularity but just a heavily designed site with low quality article and 1 minute loading time, can never guarantee success of your site. A perfect user-friendly website is a mix of many Website elements, which form the great user experience by the end.

What are the steps to be taken?Here are some tips you can use to make sure that people love to visit your blog and contribute actively to the blog’s community -

Some easy to implement tips for creating  user friendly Website:

Now, when ever we talk about creating a site which is loved by readers, we need to take care of each elements like Site navigation, subscription, site speed, sharing options and so on. You can be as creative as you could be, but make sure by the end you have a site with following elements for the best user friendly website experience. For affiliate sites, I suggest to read:

Simple and Easy Navigation

Siite navigation

When I visit a blog, I would like it to be of a simple design with may be a single sidebar and a comparatively larger content area, with ease of navigation. I would like to see the main pages such as “Home”, “About” in easily find-able locations and well highlighted.I would like to see a good list of related articles which are not just vaguely related, but closely related, which is located near the article I am reading.I would like to see the category of the article mentioned clearly so that I can check out other topics in that category.So I thought if I expect all these things in a blog, then I should also implement them at my blog, so should you.

Less Ads

I know that every blog remains profitable only through ads, and ads are the driving force of the internet, but it is not necessary to have two or three ads in the content of the blog, like so many blogs do (even some popular ones).On top of that they also have ads in the sidebar and footer. When I see ad placements like that I usually think to myself, “Come on man, I am here to read your articles not see your ads, I can see those ads anywhere on the net if I wanted to“.

I feel that an optimal ad structure that would give a good source of revenue would be to have a blended ad in the content area and another one in the sidebar.Any more than this can start intruding with the readability of a blog, which is not good at all. I also recommend that you not use In-Text ads, as they are very annoying with their pop-ups and blocking text, I usually avoid websites which enable in-text ads. Also, avoid pop-up ads.

We have also seen in the recent Penguin Update that, if a blog has too many ads it may get penalized as well as in the Above The Fold Algo that too many ads above the fold is not good for SEO, so this is a second bad effect of having too many ads, other than irritating your audience. Another great feature would be to disable ads for regular visitors, I know that this may take out a great chunk of a bloggers revenue, but it is something that a blogger should keep in mind as a possibility.

Installing A Search Box

Google custom search thumbnail 600x419

I have often found myself looking for certain content in a blog but not having the patience to go through many posts to see which one I wanted, a simple search box would have been useful then. So I recommend every blogger to install a search box in their blog to make it easier for readers to find particular content in a blog. You can use Adsense for search to create search box for your blog/Website and also make money out of it.

Install Effective Share Buttons

Share buttons can really help out readers, when a person likes a post a lot, they usually share it to social networks (which brings more traffic to your blog). It would be a cumbersome task if they have to copy the link of the post and paste it manually on a social network, hence you should have easy to use sharing buttons and they should also be conveniently placed so that your readers can find them without much effort. For WordPress, you can easily use Digg digg plugin to add Social share button.

Also, you should implement subscription options, which will help readers to subscribe to your updates. Email is one of the essential one, followed by Facebook and Twitter. You can see a complete list of must have subscription options for Bloggers.

Using Images

This may seem pretty trivial, but readers love to see photos as-well while reading, it gives some relief to the eyes of the readers and also adds value to your article.But make sure that your pictures justify your content and do not end up describing what your photo means in your article.

Also, images enhance your blog post visibility, and most of the network like Pinterest, Flickr are image driven social network, which will help you to get extra traffic. Make sure you also smush your images, which will help in faster loading. Also, if you are interested in SEO, I suggest reading image optimization for SEO, which will help you to get traffic from image searches.

Neat, Legible and Proper Writing

This is one of the most important things to ensure while trying to make your blog user friendly.You need to ensure that your articles and neat, legible and in proper English with proper grammar.I feel like going mad when I try to read a grammatically wrong  and carelessly written article.It may result in a high bounce rate.

Don’t only write article for search engine, but take care of readability also. Make sure you are giving high-quality articles, as they are the main reason people will come to your site again.

These are some of the above general tips which I believe every website should have but here are some more tips which you should consider integrating for a user friendly website experience.

More tips for creating more user-friendly Website

Page load time:

No body likes slow loading pages or pages which takes minutes or even few seconds to load. Make sure your page loading time is not high or implement necessary changes to boost loading time of your site. Also, Page load time is one of Google ranking factor.

Privacy and other TOS: 

If you have a website which is selling something or have registration enabled, make sure you have set your privacy setting and other TOS and policy pages. If you are selling something, make sure you show the trusted sign logo and Payment options, which will hel buyer to make a decision quick and avoid any future hassles.

Mobile friendly site:

Check mobile friendliness

With the rise of smart-phones and tablets, mobile friendly site has become an essential element for any website. If you are using WordPress, you can use Responsive WordPress theme or use plugin like Wp touch to easily make your site mobile friendly. For other platform, you can use DNS method to redirect your site to a mobile friendly version of simply re-design your site in responsive design. You can use Gomo-meter to check if your site is mobile friendly or not.

Contact/Feedback form:

Contact form

Credit for designer Contact form: Webfoo-london.co.uk

Depending upon your blog and website type, a contact form or Feedback form is an important part of good website user experience. If you don’t prefer Email or phone number as contact pref, you can link to your social media accounts like Twitter, Facebook for getting feedback. Point is, you should give a medium from where reader or customer can connect to you.

Avoid Auto loading video:

How many tab you open a website in background tab, and you are disturbed by some audio/video running in background tab. If you are using videos on your website sidebar or anywhere, don’t make it auto-load as it gives a bad user experience. Though, there could be an exception in the case of service or product based website.

Here are another check-list for improving your Website usability and user experience:

So I feel that these are some of the necessary things you need to do while trying to make a user friendly Website, if you have any other ways of making a blog more reader friendly then please let us know in the comments section.

This is a guest post by Gautham from TechGau. If you would like to write for ShoutmeLoud, check our guest posting guidelines.

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Article by Gautham A S

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{ 10 comments… add one }

  • Thangaraju

    Excellent advisable article. i follows less ads for my all blogs to beat panda and probably content always makes blog into great.

    Reply
  • Pankaj

    Content is King but also Have to Maintain the images and content ratio healthy. Theme Should be Simple soft to Eyes. I Prefer Thesis Framework for themes as Harsh also keep recommending it to the Bloggers always

    Reply
  • Arun

    Nice Article, but you forgot to mention The color Code Of website, It has a major role to attract our eyes at specific place.
    By the way, all aspect Determined By you are great.
    Thanks.

    Reply
  • Gaurav

    My site loads in 6.05 inspite of using responsive design and deferparsing javascript what should i do to make the site load fast

    Reply
  • Shekhar

    I would like to add responsive design of a website is now indeed a important part of building a website with good UI apart from above mentioned things. Nice tips indeed!!!

    Reply
    • Gaurav

      I would never ever taking my website to responsive design because as far i have used responsive for my site for about 6 months . Iam extremely dissatisfied with my blog performance.
      Before Adding responsive theme i was getting regularly 1000visits/day but after i used responsive theme my traffic visits started going down and down and after 6 months of using responsive design iam finally left with 200visits/day.
      Now iam again heading back to my old techblog magazine3.
      So, you should reconsider before going blindly to responsive theme.

      Reply
  • Raheel Mushtaq

    Nice article Gautham and you know i was wondering its strange a blog running so well could still go in post about such basic topics does means you not to fear about writing on Basics..! Beginners need to learn as well..!!

    Reply
  • Sanjib Saha

    Gautam you have mentioned all the topics. I think blog loading time is the main one. I will definitely hate a site which takes more time to load. Also i will prefer a simple design theme with very few ads. I also hate the sites which forces me to hit a like or tweet button. It is very important for a blog to keep the interest of the readers and you have mentioned some really good points!
    Sanjib

    Reply
  • PrIyAnGsHu

    Great tips buddy. A website or blog must always be easy to be navigated & mobile friendly as well so as to make it more user friendly :) !

    Reply
  • Avi

    I really liked the ad thing. Showing more ads is not good. Again I think a site should be simple and easy to navigate. By the way can you tell me how to get a contact form for my blog?

    Reply

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