Wednesday, May 4, 2016

How to Find the Perfect Blog Theme

 photo Picking the perfect blog theme and design_zpsfinmooxp.jpg

When it comes to blogging, there's tons of things you can always be doing to improve. I've said it many times and I'll say it again, there's always something to be done and that's the best part of blogging. Especially when it comes to blog design, you can never really be done with all of the different possibilities there are for your blog design and theme.

I've had my blog design for about a year now and I love it, but lately I've been considering trying something new. There's been a bunch of possibilities I've wanted to try, but a new and updated blog theme seems like a great way to give my blog a little spring cleaning. I'm never really satisfied, so I tend to change things around a lot! With as many pre-made themes you can purchase and web developers you can work with, there's more choices than you could ever wrap your head around. I've found so many themes I've loved and have had so many ideas that I want to implement, so focusing on the most important aspects of a blog theme is important to be happy with your choice. Here are 8 of the most important tips in finding the right blog theme for you:

Pick a price point

Blog design varies a LOT! There are pre-made templates anywhere from $15 all the way up into the hundreds. Custom blog design is more pricey, but it can be worth it depending on the look you're going for. Even custom design varies a lot in price - you can get your site designed from $300 all the way up into the thousands! There's so many different options, add-ons, a-la-carte options, etc. that you really have to do some research into picking what price point is best for you, your blog and the design you want to achieve.

Choose a color scheme first

Since there's literally thousands of ways to go with this and so many themes to look through no matter where you're shopping around, I've found it helpful to have an idea of what my colors are going to be. When I chose this theme, I knew that I wanted my color scheme to be bright and white with greenish teal colors. Of course, you can likely change the colors of a pre-made theme, but it's still a good idea to have in your mind what you want while shopping around.

Try to make a pre-made theme unique

The last thing you want to worry about is buying a pre-made theme and seeing it somewhere else... it's bound to happen, but if you're going the pre-made way, customizing is your best friend! Try and find something you can add or have added that makes your blog look unique and that's different from the original. This is sometimes why the more custom you are with buying your design, the better. Adding something special or unique also makes you stand out and gives your readers something to remember about your blog.

Make sure it's mobile friendly

I cannot stress this enough! Just think about how many hours of the day you're on a phone or tablet vs. your computer. Having your blog be responsive for mobile use is SO IMPORTANT! If you don't have a responsive theme even for mobile or one that looks just as good in it's mobile version, you're selling yourself short. Consider this one of the most important parts of blog design and always find out the mobile status of the theme before buying! P.S. if you're wondering if your site is mobile, you can simply enter your URL into this fun little web developer tool by Google. If you get a green check mark, you're good to go! If not, get on fixing your mobile status!

Choose wan overall final look

You can kind of drive yourself crazy with all of the options you have here... No one could ever possibly see all the design options they have and it's a shame because there's some really amazing ones out there - but one thing that can really help in the choosing-process and deciding if a pre-made, customizable theme or a custom design is right for you. I have an idea in my head of what I want my next design to look like so when I'm sifting through pages of designs and looking at different designer's portfolios, I know fairly quickly if they have something I like and would consider or not. This stuff is more stressful than shoe shopping! ; )

Pay attention to the details

I've always been a detail oriented person so maybe it's just me, but I notice every little thing about blog designs; from the font of your sidebar titles to the social media buttons you included and where your comment box is. This sort of goes back to knowing what look you want to achieve, but it's important to realize all of the little things before buying too. For example, one of my favorite things in a blog design is a scrolling Instagram feed and/or Pinterest feed. If a design doesn't have that, it's a "no" and I notice right away. If you're choosing a pre-made theme, make sure you view the demo a few times and scroll through each part to see it in its entirety and what you'd change around. If you're going for a custom design, make sure you detail EVERYTHING to your designer! It's so important that they know exactly what they want and luckily, web designers know that they have to pull the details out of clients so be prepared to give a LOT of detail!

Talk to your designer

No matter if you're going custom or going pre-made and customized, it's so important to talk to your designer before hand! I think it's really important that you get along and have a similar style to work together and getting to know your designer and his or her process is really helpful in choosing also. Then you can get an idea if your vision of your theme is possible with the work they do. This is also a really important part of:

Narrow it down to a small handful

After nonstop shopping around and seeing more theme ideas than you can count, it's time to narrow it down. Probably one of the hardest parts! I think the first part of narrowing down your favorite options is deciding your designer, and trying to picture which will work best for you and your blog personally. Get visual too - whether you print out a screenshot of each demo, put design elements together, open each demo in a new tab - do something that helps you see all of your options. This isn't usually an easy part, but once you decide you'll be so happy!

Getting your blog designed is one of the best things you can do for your blog and I don't think it's ever a bad thing to keep changing it up! Be picky when it comes to this, with as many different designs as there are today, there's no reason you should be settling on a design.

XOXO

Bloglovin|Facebook|Pinterest|Instagram

46 comments :

  1. I paid someone to design my site, so I didn't have to worry about any of this. It was well worth the money.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes - exactly these are tips to help you choose a blog design that you buy. :) Very worth the money.

      Delete
  2. I just redesigned my site and I love it. I think the most important thing is to stay true to your own personal style.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great tips! I do all my own design, but I definitely try to make the pre-made theme unique like you suggest!

    - Rachel | www.theconfusedmillennial.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. I've been thinking about redesigning my blog for a while now. Can't decide if its something I should invest in just yet, but I will definitely keep these tips in mind!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, Rachel! I definitely don't think you have to think about investing. There are plenty of free themes and templates around the web that are perfect! XO, Sarah | http://www.thebellainsider.com/ | http://www.instagram.com/sarah_thebella

      Delete
  5. Great tips, definitely if CSS/HTML/Java coding isn't our thing. I definitely think there are plenty of FREE templates that are perfectm so bloggers definitely shouldn't have to dish out money just yet!!! XO, Sarah | http://www.thebellainsider.com/ | http://www.instagram.com/sarah_thebella

    ReplyDelete
  6. So much great advice! I'm definitely starting to look at getting a new design and this post was super helpful. :)

    xo Brie
    www.sophistifunkblog.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. Great design so creative. I am looking at few design. I will be outsourcing this project but after reading your blog maybe try to do it myself.

    ReplyDelete
  8. These are great tips! I did mine but wished I ran across your post a bit sooner! These tips I will use in the future!

    ReplyDelete
  9. oh thank you so much for this lovely post.These are really helpful. I will keep these in mind next when am getting a theme

    ReplyDelete
  10. Great tips for choosing a blog design. Picking a theme and design that is engaging and shows off your personality are important for engaging readers.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Good read! This aren't just tips for the new ones but also serves as reminders for people who already experienced doing or hired someone to dress up their own blogs.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I would normally choose a free pre-made theme and just keep editing it until it fits my taste. These are pretty awesome tips though, especially for people who are starting out and don't have a clue about coding.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Yes!! I agree! It took me FOREVER to find the theme that I liked.

    ReplyDelete
  14. My blog is getting a revamp right now :)
    SO excited about it.
    Great tips, girl.

    xoxo, Jenny

    ReplyDelete
  15. This is a great tips and I love the design. I am looking for a new design for my blog.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Awesome idea! I love eye catching theme not just colorful but good in those eyes.

    ReplyDelete
  17. So glad you shared it, I had no idea about find a perfect blog theme.

    ReplyDelete
  18. These are great tips! I'm starting to think about purchasing a theme for my blog, but I didn't really no where to start.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I recently updated my theme, but I think I need to customize it a little more. I envisioned more color and picked a black and white template, lol.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I start with word of mouth referrals. Then I look at portfolios and see what matches my aesthetic.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Great tips! Thank you for sharing them!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Thank you for these tips. I have not changed my blog design in years and I guess it is time for a make over.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Making sure the theme is mobile friendly is SO important! I get so frustrated whenever I go on someone's blog on my phone and it looks wonky. Great tips!

    Kayla | kaylablogs.com

    ReplyDelete
  24. I have my eye on a theme, but it's a really expensive one, so I'm waiting to see if it goes on sale or there's a coupon code in the email newsletter.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Such a great post! I think I'll redesign when I graduate and I definitely need to apply these tips.

    X,
    Cristina
    cristinawashere.com

    ReplyDelete
  26. These are great tips for selecting a blog theme. One of the most important is being mobile optimized, we do so much from our phones it's really a necessity.

    ReplyDelete
  27. I agree with all of this! I especially think mobile optimization is important. I read blogs on the walk to work in the morning. (Talk about multitasking!)

    ReplyDelete
  28. My site has been a work in progress since I was learning as I went. Now that I am working on creating a second site, I feel I am much more prepared to select a theme and color scheme. Great post!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Great tips! I recently switched from Blogger to WordPress,need to have someone design my new site badly!!!

    ReplyDelete
  30. I had the hardest time picking last year. Now I have so many tweaks I want to make.

    ReplyDelete
  31. These are such awesome tips! I am looking to re-design soon.

    Mikayla | A Seersucker State of Mind.

    ReplyDelete
  32. These tips are so on point. My first go at blogging I did everything myself, this second time around I decided to hire someone. She was amazing & easy to work with. I think it's important to make sure that this design is something you want every step of the way.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Great tips! Awesome that you included the "mobile friendly" section. Some bloggers fails to do it.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Thank you for your awesome and very helpful tips! I love my blog theme and proud to have designed it. Thanks for sharing the Google site. Need to check if my site is mobile friendly :)

    ReplyDelete
  35. I recently had a designer rebrand my site and it was a completely custom, tailor-made experience and SO worth the money! I love my site and her attention to detail is amazing. But you're right, she asked for so much info which was great, but overwhelming, lol.

    ReplyDelete
  36. I've had two blog layouts working with two different designers. The first time I had no idea what I was talking about but by the second time I had a much better way of communicating with the designer. I love my blog design now!

    ReplyDelete
  37. Such a great post, this is really helpful for me as a new blogger, gonna bookmark this.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Such a fun idea! It's so hard to figure out branding
    www.kayleighskloset.com

    ReplyDelete
  39. Great tips!

    Alix | www.apintsizedlife.com

    ReplyDelete
  40. This is a very helpful post. I am kind of wanting to do something different with mine.. so I hope I can find something.

    Nicole // Chronicling Home

    ReplyDelete
  41. Yes,design and easy on the eyes is key!

    ReplyDelete
  42. I agree. When it comes to blogging, there's always something to improve on everyday. I am also tinkering on my blog theme these days.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Wow love these tips. I always change my blog theme/design ever two years just to freshen it up and keep it updated for my readers.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Picking a price point is SO hard but a must. It's easy to get caught up on price in your search, so setting clear budgeting boundaries helps!

    ReplyDelete