Save us from the out-of-control blogrolls, lists of links that run on and on and on and on and on and on and on…listing everyone who ever started a blog on the whole planet – well, it feels like it.
Your blogroll links are important in the minds of Google, and they can add or subtract points in your PageRank scores. You better take your blogroll links seriously, ensuring you are linking to blogs that will complement yours as well as complement theirs.
The WTF Blog Design Clutter continues with a look at your uncategorized category. Have you been ignoring it lately?
Most blogs start life with a single category as an example called “Uncategorized”. I don’t know why or who started it, but it’s a dumb category name, especially if users don’t know they can change it from the start. It could be called General, Topics, Articles, Stories, or a lot of other non-specific labels. Unfortunately, it is Uncategorized and we’re stuck with it.
With more and more people covering their categories and tags into heat maps or clouds, they often choose the design look emphasizes your most popular categories or tags in the largest, most bold font. For many, the word most emphasized in these category clouds is Uncategorized. read more
Maps have come a long with with the advancements of Google Maps and Yahoo! Maps, especially with the integration of satellite maps and introduction of Google Earth where you can actually see where you are going or want to go. Or where you live. Online maps make the world closer and smaller, and they can make your blog more personal.
Is it important to have a map of where you live or work or play on your blog? read more
You know them. Those ads, often text-based, that appear in the sidebars, headers, footers, between posts, in posts, and all over blogs. The ads use an algorithm to evaluate the keyword content and publish ads related to the keywords. We all know how fallible those attempts are, don’t we? When it comes to WTF Blog Design Clutter, the distracting ad that pulls us from the content to the ad with a “WTF is that doing here” thought can ruin your blog reading experience.
A friend of mine shared the story of her husband’s struggle to recover from a stroke on her blog. There were laughter and tears in her stories, but also distractions. Her husband’s nickname is Joe and the ads in the sidebar showed horrible ads for Joe Cool, Joe Blow, Easy Joe, and other obnoxious things including cigarettes and light porn. Totally inappropriate. So many people complained, she took down the ads.
While online advertisers are working overtime to figure out profiling techniques, aiming as much related contextual ads at the blog’s visitors, a lot of the ads are totally unrelated, often insulting or demeaning. read more
Your blog archives are the list of months some bloggers keep in their sidebar that link to monthly chronological collections of their blog posts. In the early days, a site with such a monthly listing in their sidebar meant this was a personal blog. Without it, it was a website or professional site.
Are you still displaying your blog post archives? What benefit do bloggers get when the offer a long series of months and years in the sidebar of their blog? Do visitors and readers really use them? Do you?
With all the worry about duplicate content and Google’s PageRank, if your blog is generated similar or duplicate content within the categories and tags, then why do you need to clog their databases with archives?
Have you ever found archives in a search result? I do all the time. I click though hoping to find the answer to my question and find nothing. That information might have been on page 4 of that month’s archive of posts, but now, the natural chronological push from the present to the past of the blog structure may have pushed the information I need onto page 6.