This post is not to say that I am any expert when it comes to blogging, but I feel like I have learned a few things after these years of blogging and I thought I would share some of these tips with you, in case you are looking for some ways to improve your own blog. These are things that I usually notice about other blogs and that I believe make a blog look better and also make it more user-friendly (or easier to browse through).
1. Stick to the normal fonts. I'll be honest with you, this is one thing that will make me less likely to read a blog - it's when the person uses an italic font or any type of font that is hard to read. I like to use the default ones that Blogger comes with.
2. Stick with a theme. Pick a theme for your blog and try to stick to those colours for links, banners, side-bar titles etc. It will make the blog look more put together. Also, I would keep a white/light background, rather than a black/dark coloured one - people are more used to the white one and it is way easier to read.
3. Make it easy for people to comment. When a blog has a very complicated way of commenting (like having to log into other accounts to use it), it will sometimes deter me from leaving a comment. I also don't use Captcha code on my blog, which I honestly find a bit unnecessary, since Blogger will usually find spam comments on its own, or you can easily delete them if you get any. It makes it easier for people to leave a quick comment.
4. Add an "You might also like.." type of widget at the end of your posts. This is something that drives quite a lot of traffic through my blog and there are various widgets that you can use to do this (like Engageya - which I currently use, LinkWithin etc.).
5. Improve your blog's appearance on mobile devices. Check out your own blog on a tablet or phone and see what it looks like. Can you read what it says easily? Can you click on the buttons in the sidebar? Just take an overall look at it and see if it's user friendly, since a majority of people will browse your blog through a device other than laptop/PC.
6. Improve the search speed on your blog. If you don't already have Google Analytics for your blog, I would highly recommend making an account there. It is very helpful to see various stats about your blog (much more accurately than the Blogger ones). You can also see there your site's speed and what you can do to improve it. If your blog loads very slowly, people are very likely to just click away instantly.
7. Make it easy for people to search through your blog. Use widgets or different pages on your blog to help people search through your older posts. For example, I have created two pages to make it easier for people to browse through the posts: by category or by date.
8. Make your photos Pinterest friendly. I'm going to be honest, I don't do this for all of my pictures, but I try to most of the time. An example is the picture I made for this post. Keep in mind when editing your photos the way in which they will look on a Pinterest board and if they will stand out.
9. Link your social media accounts. This might seem like a no-brainer to most of you, but I sometimes stumble across blogs where I have to dig very deep to find their Twitter name, for example. Or they just don't link it at all.. Definitely keep your social media in sight, so that people don't have to go through too much trouble to follow you there if they want to.
10. Keep it simple. Take a look at your blog and see what stands out - the main thing should be the content you post, so I would say try to keep everything else fairly simple. This is totally up to you! However, keep in mind that a tidy blog will be easier to read than a cluttered one.
These are the main tips I have learned along the way and that I think have helped me the most. I hope you found these useful! Leave any tips you might have in the comments below, I'm always open to learning more!