Web design plays a huge role in the success of your blog. For your blog to be taken seriously, not only does the content have to be of quality, but it has to have a sharp, polished and professional look to it too. There are three ways that you can go about doing this:
- You can do the coding yourself
- You can use existing templates
- You can hire a professional who will be able to create a customized site for you
Before you can get started, there are a couple of things that you need to do. First, you need to make sure that you are working with a flexible blogging platform. There are a lot of blogging platforms out there that won’t allow you to customize a whole lot of things, but if you choose a platform like WordPress, you will be able to create a blog that is completely your own.
Secondly, you want to make sure that you choose a good web host. If you don’t have a good web host, such as one of the many free web hosts out there, you will find that they are not nearly as flexible as you would like, so you may run into problems when it comes to customized web design. You don’t have to spend a lot for a good web host, but make sure that you spend a little bit of money on it. You’ll be glad that you did.
Once you have those to things, then you can begin exploring how you can build awesome web design. We will start from the first point:
1. Doing The Coding By Yourself
If you know a lot about HTML and CSS, and you have the time to invest in inputting the code yourself, then you can create a great looking professional site. Even if you don’t know a whole lot about either HTML or CSS, there are free tools out there that you can use to help you build up the code. The only problem with this is that, if you run into any difficulties, it can be a bit troublesome trying to find out the error in your coding.
If you choose to do your own coding, then it’s important that you choose a flexible blogging platform, like WordPress. Once you have that, install it directly into your web hosting account. From there, you can begin to write your own code, and you can use tools such as Adobe Photoshop to help create images and designs.
If you aren’t sure how you want it to appear, do some research! Surf the web and check out similar websites. See what you do and don’t like about their blog designs. Copy design ideas that you like and see if they work for your blog. The benefit of knowing the coding means that you can easily change things as you go along.
2. Using Existing Templates For Your Blog
A lot of blogging sites have a ton of free templates that you can use, but you will probably find that they are not nearly as customizable as you would like. When you first start your blog, start with an existing template and play around with it. See what you like and what you don’t like. As your business grows, then you may want to start looking into premium themes. Premium themes like StudioPress & DIYThemes are great for several reasons:
- They are very well designed
- They are functional and flexible
- Plugins and widgets have already been added to a premium theme
- Any bugs have (hopefully) been removed
- They are more robust
Anyone with any coding knowledge will also be able to add in any extras upon their choosing and further customize an already customized theme. You don’t need to know a whole lot of coding, or any coding really, to choose this option when it comes to having awesome web design. Having a theme like this is a great shortcut to having a blog with fantastic web design.
3. Hire A Professional To Do Your Custom Design
If you’re new to blogging and web design, your first thought may have been to higher on a professional to do the job for you. But if you have looked into it any further than that, you probably already know just what we’re about to say: hiring on a professional is extremely expensive. If you are determined to go this route, you need to know EXACTLY what you want. You have to have already thought up of and sketched out the concept for your blog. You already should have a very, very clear idea of the design that you want. If you don’t know what you want, then your web designer is going to make suggestion upon suggestion, saying that you should add “this” or “that” to your blog to make it awesome.
And while their suggestions may make your blog awesome, it will cost you. A lot. Nothing comes cheap when it comes to web design, so make sure that you have the cash on hand before you hire on a web designer, too. Tell them exactly what your budget is so that they know where your limits are and then stick to them.
What we recommend is that you use these steps as a sort of “stepping stone” system to building your blog. Start off with point one. Get a WordPress account, check out their themes, and try to tinker with some coding yourself. See how it works out. As your audience grows and more people visit your site, then you may want to invest in a premium template to give your blog a more polished feel (these templates generally cost anywhere from $35 to $500 a piece). Finally, if you are making a ton of money and can afford to hire on a professional web designer, then you can choose to go that route.