How to make your blog user friendly

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I read a lot of blogs, usually at least 15 a day. Though I never claim to be an expert, I can sure tell you want I like and what I don’t like when it comes to other peoples blogs. While these things are my personal preferences, I’m sure there are other people out there that feel the same as me.

How user friendly a blog is is VERY important to me. You might have never thought about user friendliness when it comes to your blog posts before, but it can be an important factor to how long someone stays on your blog and if they decide to come back or not.

Let’s look at some things that I think can make blogs more user friendly:

2016

Make it easy to find your latest post.

With the amount of themes out there to buy or download for free, there’s many options. Some of these options are bad. Of course, this is subjective. But there is one type that irks me to no end.

It’s when you can’t find the actual latest post on the main page. Maybe there’s a slider that revolves around latest posts, maybe your posts are split up into categories rather than date order, maybe there’s no date at all.

If I have to rely on looking at the dates in the URL, or look in the sidebar for a ‘latest post’ widget, then I’m probably too frustrated to read your post by the time I find it.

If you don’t want your posts in chronological order, please have the date showing!

Have a clear ‘read more’ option.

If you have your blog in a grid or magazine style, make sure you make it easy for people to see where they need to click to read more.

It might be obvious that you should click the title of the post to read more, but I have come across posts where that doesn’t work, or the link just takes you back to the home page, if you have to click on ‘comments’ or something random to get the full post, you could be losing out on readers because they’ll give up.

Help.

Have clear social buttons.

You should make it DEAD easy for me to find your on Twitter and other social channels. If your social buttons are scattered about and not all in one place above the fold, then I’m going to miss them.

Unless they are easy to see, chances are I won’t go searching in the footer or within blog posts to try and connect with you.

I mean, unless there’s a spark ;).

Resize your images.

If you upload an image straight from your camera or phone, chances are it’s going to be way too big for your blog. Most blogs will resize it so it fits, but the image file is massive.

This means that when I load your blog post, it takes longer for your blog to load and I’m bored because I’m impatient and a bit of a dick.

You can resize your images in many ways, I usually import my images into Photos on my Mac, then export the ones I want to use in blog posts as the right size I need before I edit them.

You can also use PicMonkey if you’re wanting a free option!

Don’t use too many photos.

For the same reason above, if your blog post has loads of photos, it’s going to take ages to load.

Some blog posts do require many photos, but there are a lot out there that don’t. Outfit posts, for example. We don’t need to see 20 photos of you in the same coat doing the same pose, just slightly different! I know it’s hard to sometimes pick a favourite photo, but please do it!

Popups. 

Everyone knows popups are annoying, but they’re even more annoying when there isn’t any clear way of getting rid of them unless I like your Facebook page, subscribe to your newsletter or follow you on Twitter.

If you want to make your blog even LESS user friendly, then you can put one of those popups that randomly appear after 30 seconds or so, interrupting my reading experience.

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What do you think makes blogs user friendly?

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33 Comments

  1. February 25, 2016 / 7:33 am

    Great post! I found that when I moved my social media buttons higher up my blog more people followed it was amazing to think that it could make such a difference! I do like lots of photos in blogs but they need to be quick to load!

    I would love to see more posts about how you make your photos for Pinterest as they look really professional x

    http://thriftyvintagefashion.blogspot.co.uk/
    Nicole recently posted…Negative Friendships | #SpeakUpMy Profile

  2. February 25, 2016 / 7:50 am

    Yeah totally agree with those magazine style blogs. I don’t mind the homepage but I want a latest posts bit at least! Clear about me page is also important for me!

  3. February 25, 2016 / 8:43 am

    I agree with all of them. I don’t like pop-ups or when I have to look for the latest post and I can seem to find it. I also don’t like when there aren’t lots of pictures, for example 2-3 pictures from a day out visiting a castle is not enough. I like reading the story, but I also like seeing a few pictures that show how the castle looked like. For fashion posts I agree, 20 pictures are too many, it’s the same coat/dress. 🙂
    Anca recently posted…5 minutes workoutMy Profile

  4. February 25, 2016 / 10:56 am

    I have to agree 100% percent especially the magazine like blog I can ever find the date and the pop up kill me from some blog and it makes it so difficult to leave a comment.

  5. February 25, 2016 / 11:08 am

    Blogs with popups are THE MOST annoying thing!! And blogs that take forever to load also deter me all the time. I haven’t really seen any with weird categories or grids and stuff though… maybe that’s because I automatically ignore them :’). What I really hate is when people play music with this bar at the top, because it just makes everything slower and how am I supposed to concentrate on what I’m reading when there’s annoying sounds playing.

    -M
    http://thelyfoflittleme.blogspot.com

  6. February 25, 2016 / 11:23 am

    These are some great tips! Sometimes I find blogs with weird layouts and I don’t know which posts are recent, or if they’re just popular or featured posts. And it’s quite annoying! And popups are definitely the worst!

    Be | lovefrombe

  7. February 25, 2016 / 11:25 am

    I agree, sometimes I find it difficult to navigate blogs, I just thought it was my lack of knowledge or skills in blogging. I would love any feedback on my blog and if you can tell me how to make it bette, that would be awesome. I am only 6 months into blogging and have tons to learn. Cheers, Michele

  8. February 25, 2016 / 12:36 pm

    Great thoughts on clear blogging. My pet hate is where I can’t find any way to follow a blog other than the subscribe by email button. I never do that because I hate loads of emails cluttering up my inbox so prefer daily bloglovin or NetWorked Blogs digests.
    Stephanie Jane recently posted…The Barracas of Montroig del CampMy Profile

  9. February 25, 2016 / 1:38 pm

    I love this post 🙂 I totally agree on the ‘read more’ part, because there are numerous blogs I’ve left because I couldn’t figure out how to read the post. The same thing goes for comments, if I can’t find it, I won’t leave a comment… So, your loss 😀 Thank you for sharing xx

  10. February 25, 2016 / 2:40 pm

    This is so important, I also dislike the fact when there is no search bar installed and at the same time no archive list. I need either one of them to look through a past post that I had really enjoyed and want to revisit. However, pop-ups surely are the most annoying things ever! x

    Jadirah Sarmad at Jasmine Catches Butterflies ʚϊɞ
    Jadirah Sarmad recently posted…Sigma Beauty Makeup is GAMEMy Profile

  11. Sam
    February 25, 2016 / 4:47 pm

    100% agree with all of this. I can’t bear scrolling through an outfit post that has 1000 pictures of them in pretty much the same pose! I’ve actually unfollowed some as it irks me that much.

  12. February 25, 2016 / 6:01 pm

    Pop ups are so fiddly, especially on mobile! I also find the magazine type blogs really tricky to read

  13. Gabrielle
    February 25, 2016 / 6:33 pm

    Having homepages that are split into categories as opposed to date order is also one of my pet hates! Great guide Corinne, I think I’ve escaped them all – emphasis on ‘think’ haha.

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice
    x

  14. February 25, 2016 / 7:15 pm

    Great post! I don’t like the popups and I think that an about page is very important thing!
    Darina recently posted…My Book Wishlist #1My Profile

  15. amy-anne
    February 25, 2016 / 7:55 pm

    Dude, these are all really good, super useful points. But even I have to admit that I’m guilty about posting too many images – literally every post is scattered with them :’)

    Amy;
    Little Moon Elephant

  16. February 25, 2016 / 8:52 pm

    Great post! As a newer blogger, it’s helpful to come across helpful tips & hints.

    I think my blog ticks most of the boxes here, but food for thought!

  17. February 25, 2016 / 10:14 pm

    I definitely agree with you on all these – I also like blogs where you don’t have to click ‘read more’ on all the posts.

    Caz | This is Caz

  18. Claire
    February 26, 2016 / 7:03 pm

    All your posts are so helpful, especially for me as I’m a newbie and really am going into this blind!! Thank-you so much for sharing your tips!!

    Xxx

    throughherblueeyesblog.blogspot.co.uk

  19. February 27, 2016 / 3:28 pm

    great post n tips… thank u!

  20. February 27, 2016 / 4:11 pm

    I could not agree more. The only one I’m guilty of myself is the social buttons and that’s because I started to do it, got frustrated, stopped and have been so frazzled I keep forgetting to finish/fix it. Ugh. But seriously, pop ups are the number one thing that will make me leave a site. So annoying!
    Kaitlynn Marie recently posted…iPhone 6S Plus ReviewMy Profile

  21. February 28, 2016 / 9:36 am

    God I agree with you – there are quite a few things that make me leave a blog and essentially, if there’s a pop up after a pop up or one reminding me to follow this or that, or one I can’t get rid of, I usually leave immediately.

    I think I’m doing a good job at these. And I think I fit in in all of them. But if I ever do something weird please do let me know, I’d hate to be one of those people who has no idea about the errors they’re making that could potentially damage the blog.

    Ella x
    Ella Pinto recently posted…18 Things I wish I knew before I started bloggingMy Profile

  22. February 29, 2016 / 9:56 pm

    Oh the pop-ups annoy me the most. I don’t know whether I’d like to subscribe to the newsletter or whatever because I’ve only been on the blog for half a minute! The awkward grid layouts are also really annoying. I think you hit everything here haha!
    Katie recently posted…Life in February ’16My Profile

  23. February 29, 2016 / 10:50 pm

    Agree with all of these! Ha, though I think I posted 3 pics of me in pretty much the same pose wearing my coat though!x
    Kezzie recently posted…Navy talesMy Profile

  24. March 1, 2016 / 8:20 pm

    I really want to update my blog but finding a minute currently with Noah is proving difficult, hoping that as he gets bigger it might be more possible. All great tips, waiting for a blog to load is the worst Lucy x
    Lucy recently posted…My Little Box January and FebruaryMy Profile

  25. March 2, 2016 / 2:14 pm

    Pop ups fill me with rage!! Great tip about photos though, I haven’t been re-sizing before I upload and that’s probably really bad for page load times. Time to add that to the list of things to do before posting!
    Tracy recently posted…Travel in Rio: What to see and doMy Profile

  26. March 14, 2016 / 4:13 am

    I’m say here reading your post and nodding my head in agreement like a nodding dog; I then go and review my blog and realise I need to have a little bit of a blog face lift and put into practice some of your tips.

  27. April 8, 2016 / 1:44 pm

    99% of the time if I click to a blog or website and there’s a pop up I leave immediately. They are SO obnoxious. The worst is if I already do like their facebook page/subscribe to the newsletter or whatever – it makes me want to unlike it!

  28. April 20, 2016 / 7:48 am

    Excellent points, and I agree to all of those. I would also like to add the color scheme and fonts used to this list.
    Popups aren’t that annoying to me unless I find the “close” button. Otherwise I am fine with them, because those are the ones that perform the best for email opt-ins.

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