The Numbers are Amazing

Since I first go myself into this whole blogging thing I’ve taken much more interest in other peoples websites and it really does amaze me how many are running on WordPress these days. Most are quite obvious due to the fairly standard layout they adopt with the main body of text and the sidebar and footer full of widgets and menu’s etc, plus of course on standard blogs like this one, the way everything is laid out in date order and allocated to a specific category. It’s also quite SEO friendly out of the box, but if you want to take it further, there are again plenty of plugins to help with the SEO of your site.

It seems that a huge number of web designers are also using WordPress themselves, customising the templates, or even designing them completely from scratch, giving the clients the opportunity to add their own posts and pages, without having to get bogged down in technical web design and messing about with navigation and so forth. I love the way it makes having a nice looking website design within the reach of everyone, regardless what their budget is, some web designers are even wordpress template designsetting them up for free now too and just charging a monthly fee instead like this one the obvious big benefit being that a new business need not worry about spending thousands with a big design agency to have an online presence. And again, to sing the praises of WordPress it also means that their site is completely scalable should they get bigger and have additional money to spend. In fact, once a site is initially configured and established, all they need do is have a designer develop a template for the site and re-skin it, so minimal cost involved.

Of course many people are going the DIY route these days, so sites like Envato are doing very well, selling a designers pre-made templates, you can see a range of their most popular ones here, unbelievably, some designs are selling so many copies that the designer has literally made over a million dollars now! That’s not to say they just design the template and forget about it, they do keep updating them and have to deal with a lot of support queries, but even so, not a bad way to make a living!

There are loads of tutorials on the web about how to do design, customise WordPress templates and all manner of related topics, all readily available free of charge, so in reality there’s nothing stopping anyone from having a go, who knows, you might just be the next big template to make the developer a million dollars (or ponds if you are in the uk)

Now, while I’m on the topic, yes I know this sites own design is looking a little tired these days, it was set up a good couple of years ago and trends in design have moved on somewhat since then, so perhaps I’ll have a look for a new template for here, they can be free, but you have to pay a little bit for the better designs which don’t have advertising on them, but we are only talking about a few dollars.

Writing for the Web

There are a few key things to bear in mind when writing for the web, this is a bit of a brain dump of ideas and I will add to it over time:

1. Keep it relevant.  This is something which I struggle with myself, but if the content is not relevant to the topic on the page, a visitor will probably lose interest and move on.

2. Grab Their Interest. Get to the point right at the start, most web readers just skim the content, so if you make a bold statement or put the conclusion at the start, you stand a better chance of keeping them on the page.

3. One Idea In Each Paragraph. This relates back to keeping it relevant and helps to segment the article into manageable chunks.

4. Use Lists. Like this post, there is a brief header then a description for each point, so readers can skim or read the whole post easily.

5. Keep Sentences Short. Again, concise is the key here

6. Add links to relevant pages within the body of the Text. They will stand out as they should be a different colour and will make it clear to the reader that clicking it will move them to a new page with related content.

As I said, this list will evolve, but this is what springs to mind right now.

WordPress Blogging

OK, so this is the first post here, generally I will be writing about blogs and blogging, however I know from previous experience that I have an inclination to stray off the topic, so in all fairness, if you have just found my little corner of the web, you really can expect to find just about anything here.  I’ll be chatting about writing for the web, possibly touching on design aspects and certainly a little bit about SEO, as that’s what I’m most interested in right now.