Today I have a special treat: this blog’s very first guest post!
Bree, AKA The Blog Stylist, graciously agreed to write a post for me about spicing up your blog. Bree loves technology and writing lists, and while she used to be a beauty and website editor for Cosmo magazine, she now travels and blogs. Her blog is a simple and stylish guide to blogging, and she has a new project called Bloggers Domain, which is an amazing compilation of tool and resources for bloggers.
Take it away, Bree!
If your blogging mojo has gone MIA, perhaps it’s time to liven things up a li’l with a dash of creativity. Here, eight ways to do just that. And the best part? They’re all free!
1. Lose the plain fonts!
One of the quickest and easiest ways to freshen up your blog with little effort is to change its fonts. There are numerous sites that offer web-friendly fonts you can use, but if you’re after a free selection, check out Google’s Web Fonts. They’ve got a pretty good selection to choose from (241 font families) and you can also download them for use in Photoshop and more.
2. Import images from other sites
Use Flickr? Pinterest? Instagram? You can easily incorporate the feeds from these sites into your blog by installing the relative WordPress plugins. Having the pictures appear in your sidebar not only gives your readers something else to look at, but provides other ways for them to connect with you off your blog.
3. Try a new colour scheme
4. Make use of free .psd files
If your design skills are lacking, don’t spend hours trying to create something from scratch in Photoshop for a post. There are plenty of free .psd files available to download. Just look towards sites such as 365psd
5. Take advantage of creative commons content
There’s a plethora of content available online you can use within your posts. Not only will you save some time writing, but you’ll make your posts more interesting by embedding all kinds of work. Try Vimeo for videos,Slideshare for slideshows and Scribd for documents.
6. Create a screencast
How-to videos will always be popular, so try making one for your readers. Show them how to do something online (such as creating an account to a new social-networking site or using a certain function in photoshop). Record the process with open-source software such as CamStudio.
7. Get your readers interacting
The comments section is obviously a good spot for your readers to give their feedback or share links, but for something different, try incorporating a widget. From the ordinary such as polls to the new and different (Rafflecopter for running competitions) there’s no shortage of ways to get viewers to participate in your community.
8. Create a favicon
A favicon (favorites icon) may be one of the tiniest design elements of your blog, but as the saying goes: It’s the little things that count. Create one in a matter of minutes using a site such as Genfavicon.
Thanks Bree! Do you have any cool tips on ways to spice up your blog? Add them in the comments!