Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Condensed #bbloggers Chat

1141 tweets later and I finally condensed last Sunday’s #bbloggers chat for the first time. For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, basically it is an hour of twitter chat for all us fashion/beauty bloggers and happens every Sunday at 8pm. Week 13’s topic was ‘layouts, HTML help and personalising the look of your blog,’ the general feel I got was that people were really interested in this topic and joined in to either help others or possibly ask for help.

There were a few clear messages which came up throughout the chat which were raised by different bloggers; here’s what I thought were the most mentioned ones:

Bigger photos are better; also having just one sidebar allows for this as your blog doesn’t look too crowded

People like continuity; don’t have all different fonts and colours here there and everywhere, try to have a theme running throughout your blog

Do not disable right click if you are worried about people stealing your photos; use a free service such as Picnik.

If you can, check through other browsers to make sure your blog looks ok. What looks great in Internet Explorer, might not look the same in Google Chrome

Have your GFC button and other following options (including twitter and youtube) near the top of your blog; people don’t like having to search for it

It’s good to have links within posts if you mention one of your previous posts

Widgets such as the search bar and post archive seemed to be a hit with people; an easy to navigate blog is an absolute must! 

Make sure your blog is mobile friendly, Liloo shows you how to do it Here

Don’t have too many adverts, any more than one or two and your blog looks cluttered. Try to keep them to your sidebar don’t have them between posts.

A lot of folk like to browse all different things at once, so having your links open in another window can be very helpful. Do this by using this html: < a href="INSERT THE URL HERE" target="_blank">click here. (remove spaces!)

Tips from individuals

@thechapblog: The best thing a new blogger could do is make their blog bigger than 1000px Big blogs are so much easier to work with! 

@thismodernpanda: If you want to tweak your blog with coding, always use the "simple" design on blogger's design template

@beautysbadhabit: When I gave my blog an overhaul, I made a new blog so the layout would be decent before copying the coding over to my blog 

@fashionCHICsta: Don’t be afraid to push buttons and try things on your layout it wont save unless you tell it to

@jaimelondonboy: I love it when people design their own layout and make it their own. It should reflect your personality. :]

@sarahtweetypie: you don't need to be a photoshop whizz to design yourself a header, mine's courtesy of polyvore

@skinscrubs Put an ad on Gumtree or contact your local uni [if you want someone else to design your blog without the cost]. Students are always looking for work for their portfolios

@The_BeautyScoop: Test your blog layout on different resolutions by going to http://t.co/6N1Ysid 

@tsunimee: tip: your GFC box keeps disappearing? install an alternative 'backup' button & never lose a potential reader: Click here

Popular tools and websites

Miss E Blog’s weekly tutorials  - Ellie does ‘Tutorial Tuesday’ where she gives hints and tips on how to use HTML and other little bits for your blog. I’m sure she’s open to suggestions too!

Tweakmyblogger.com – Speaks for itself really, has tutorials on how to customise your favicon, use custom font styles etc. Well worth a look.

Dafont.com – loads of different fonts available for download either for free or a donation to the owner

Colourlovers.com – for those who are unsure of a colour scheme, this suggest some which look good together

www.gimp.org - @thechapblog suggested this as an alternative to photoshop, it can be difficult to get used to but a great tool when you get the hang of it

Both @thechapblog and @sjmwell offered their services to bloggers, they invite you to tweet them if you need any help or advice.

Lilooblog.blogspot.com - when Liloo cleaned up her blog, she posted about the tips and tricks she learnt; very informative.

Shabbyblogs.com – a popular site for downloading templates

Oh! Panda - Blogger talk provides helpful hints and tips for your blog.

Paint and powerpoint can be very helpful if you want to design your own blog but don’t have fancy tools to do so.

A final and important note; make sure that your blog represents YOU, do what you want to do, this was not meant to be a definitive Do’s and Don’ts list for bloggers, it is simply what came out of the #bbloggers chat. Hope it helped in some way!

See a full transcript here (courtesy of @tsunimee)

And suggest/vote for next weeks topic here

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