Thursday, July 1, 2010

Characteristics of A Good Blogger Template

Blogger is almost totally different from Wordpress. Blogger templates are usually in xml code formats while Wordpress is composed of php’s and plugins. But basically, both of them have the same requirements to be considered as a good theme.

I already used several Blogger themes that you can find over the net. But finally, I decided to modify my own theme to fit my wants and needs. And at the same time, I tried to list the characteristics of a good blogger blog. Below is my short list.

Search Engine Friendly –
One of the most difficult decisions that you will have to decide is to whether or not you will choose a beautiful fancy template or a minimalist template. Unfortunately, most beautiful fancy templates are not search engine friendly.


On the other hand, it doesn’t mean that just because you chose to have a minimalist template, then you will have an ugly looking blog. I have seen lots of beautiful minimalist templates.

Here’s a very important tip. Choose a minimalist template. With the use of the new Blogger Template maker, try to modify it the way you want it. Doing this will help you retain the most important elements in optimizing your blog for search engines.

All Pages and Posts are Functioning Well – There was a time that I have chosen a very beautiful fancy blogger template. When I started customizing it and conducting some tests, I found out that it cannot open the Blogger pages. It doesn’t show any errors, but it just don’t open.

Remember that these tiny bugs may affect your ranking. Search engines read the codes and not the looks. Broken codes can affect your blog.

AS for my case I am forced to abandon it and tried to customize it in my own. 

Easy Sharing – Good news! Blogger have just made a new set of buttons that is readily available in Blogger.  It contains 5 buttons, Google mail, Twitter, Google Buzz, Facebook, and Blogger. All you have to do is activate it.

In some cases, some bloggers want their blogspot blog to have a recognizable sharing buttons. The new trend right now is the Sexy Bookmark. It’s a little technical to install it on Blogger but it is installable. 

A catchy bookmark is highly recommended to encourage your visitors to read your blog without any hassle. Just make sure that the bookmark links that you provide are the most popular ones to have a better exposure. There are probably more than a hundred of them.

By I strongly suggest that you install Google and Yahoo buzz buttons, Facebook and Twitter. These are the most popular ones to which I believe can really do give a good exposure if used properly.

Easy Navigation – Make your blog clickable. Your visitors have to see the latest posts in your blog easily. Avoid placing your tabs at the bottom of your blog. Place it above, just right below the header or beside it can be the best places.

I suggest that you set the Archiving to monthly. This will enable your visitors to view the titles of your posts per month.

If possible, try to make a customized sitemap of your blogger blog. Try to do it manually using an html editor. I highly recommend Kompozer. It’s free and WYSIWYG. But be sure to pass to the Google Webmasters the sitemap readable by search engines like Atom, RSS or feedburner.

Readable Font Sizes – Have you been to blogs or websites with very small fonts? How about with the huge fonts? I tried working this out in all of my blogs because most of them are set to smaller font sizes.

As for me, I tried setting it to 13-14 font sizes instead of 12. It is because most platforms show 12 font sizes to be really small. The old guys will find it hard to enjoy reading your blog if the fonts are too small.

You can do this by customizing your blog template and edit the body font size.

Optimized Ad Places –
Don’t just place Ads anywhere on your blog. When I’m still learning how to blog, some of my friends commented that my blog seems to be full of advertisement but with meat.  But I do not want to eliminate the ad monetization model.

And I know you also don’t want to do that. The best tip? Place the ads in the most clickable places and not just anywhere in the post. Make them look to be a part of your blog instead of full advertisement. Know where the Adsense are best placed.  

How’s your template? Is it good looking, friendly to the eye blog? Make your blog beautiful by making it simple.

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This blog is a portfolio of knowledge about Money Making Online and Blogging. It is full of tutorials and helpful tips on successful blogging and making money online.

To start with, I highly recommend that you read 31 Days To Make A Better Blog.
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