I didn’t mean for the title of this post to be so egocentric. I just couldn’t think of how else to put it. I was doing my usual Bloglovin’ rounds the other day and I started thinking about what really makes a difference for me when I look at a blog. Obviously good writing is essential, but when you spend fair bit of time moseying around various blogs you notice the benefits of other features. Five ideas popped into my noggin…
Interesting Post Concepts
I’m always really impressed with bloggers who come up with strong concepts for their posts. Both Jen and Rebecca are great examples of this. In fact Jen even wrote a piece on 10 Different Ways To Vary Your Blog Content, which is perfect for anyone struggling to come up with post ideas. I think everybody enjoys a good haul post every once in a while, but really interesting reads are often more than just showing products that you’ve purchased. It’s more engaging to present things with an idea or perspective behind them.
I’ve talked about good navigation before. It’s only ever a missed opportunity not to have some form of navigation on your blog. When you put so much work into your posts don’t let them disappear into the past! People need some way of finding them. Consider archives, tags or a related posts widget – anything that will resurface old work.
Disqus Comment System
Switching from the Blogger comment system to Disqus was one of the best things I’ve ever done blog-wise. Not only does the system look more appealing to me, but it’s also far more user friendly. You don’t have to worry about logging in and out of Google accounts (which is a pain when you have multiple accounts). You can just stay logged into Disqus all the time. Also, some other comment systems have you fill out your name, email and website to leave a comment. I’m not keen on having to do that busy work. It sounds simple, but it’s enough to make people not want to comment. I always appreciate when I go to someone’s blog and see Disqus because I know I don’t have to worry about any of that.
This is obviously more specifically for beauty blogs, but add yo dang swatches… please and thank you. When someone is doing a post about their favourite red lipsticks for example, it ‘ent always enough to take a picture of the tube. I really enjoy seeing swatches, or even better, pictures of the product actually on. Attention to detail makes all the difference.
There’s nothing wrong with using images from alternate sources (provided you list the source). It’s just that sometimes it’s harder to identify with someone’s work when the photographs are coming from elsewhere. Photography is an opportunity to get creative and to stand out. It’s worth giving it a go. If you don’t have a great camera, consider getting some clip on lenses for your phone. They’re a heck of a lot cheaper than a SLR.