16 Rules of Blog Writing and Layout. Which Ones Are You Breaking?

 blog-writing-magicBlog Rules Vs. Print Rules

Remember newspapers?

People used to get them delivered to their door and read them over breakfast. They’re big, awkward to hold and they cover your fingers in black printer ink.

Plus, getting them to your doorstep takes hours so, by the time you read a newspaper, the news isn’t all that new. Newspaper has their drawbacks but one thing they do right is make sure their stories are easy to read.

By that I mean how they actually format and layout the newspaper and each story. Of course, first newspapers hit you with a headline that makes you really want to read more.

Something like this works wonders:

THE KING OF POP IS DEAD! How he really died! 10,000 pills in 6 months

Sensational tabloids aside, the content in newspapers is generally good ~ the writing’s high quality and they usually get their facts straight.

But quality content isn’t all you expect when you buy a newspaper and it isn’t enough for blog writing either. All newspapers make sure their content is easy to read by constraining the width of their columns and that’s what their readers rightly expect.

Blog writers need to do the same and format their blog posts so they’re easy to read. Long narrow newspaper columns mean your eye can easily jump from the end of one line to the beginning of the next without losing its place. If the column’s too wide readers will keep getting lost, unless they enlist their finger to help them keep track. Even if they do that they’ll get frustrated and won’t enjoy the reading experience.

This is just one element of traditional media and legibility knowledge that we can use on our blogs or website layout. Newspapers follow set rules for the formatting and lay out their stories to make them easy to read and bloggers need to follow some too. Blog writing and formatting content for the Web is more complex than writing for print because how we read on a computer screen is different to how we read in print and more challenging.

Blog Rules are Based on Two Things:

People skim read when they read things on-screen

A website or blog is missing the usual cues that let us know how long an article is. Pick up a book or cast your eye over a newspaper article, and you’ll instantly be able to gauge how long it is and how long it will take to read. Online the only way to find that out is to scroll down to the end of the blog post and that’s what most people do. While they’re at it, they’ll also try to scan read the post. A long body of text is scary. Even if the headline appeals to them, with no other clues about the content, people will be reluctant to start reading. By helping people scan your blog posts with good layout and telling them more about what information they’ll find in it you can entice them to read the post in full.

It’s harder to read things on-screen than on print

Screen legibility is improving along with resolution and screen size but there are still some simple rules you need to know to help people read your blog more easily. If you want to make sure people enjoy reading your blog, tell their friends about it and subscribe then you need to make sure the very act of reading your blog is easy. No matter how great your blog content and writing is, if it’s not easy to read people won’t enjoy it and won’t come back for more. I recommend you stick to these blog rules.

16 Rules of Blog Writing and Layout

1. Format every blog post

Careful formatting will make your blog posts easier for people to scan. Write your posts with the page layout in mind or edit them to make sure they’re well formatted for scan reading.

2. Constrain column width

Keep the blog post column width about 80 characters or less (including spaces) and your readers will thank you for it. Check out these before and after screen shots of Under the Mango Tree. I advised Stacyann to update her blog to make it easier to read and changing the column width for the main body of text was one of the first things we sorted out. Wide columns of text are an instant turn off and very hard to read. The difference is incredible and it’s such a simple change. Rules of Blog Writing and Blog Post Formatting

3. Use Headers and Sub-headers

Headers and sub-headers will break up long blog posts, help people scan read your blog and convince them to read the whole post. Read How to Write Hypnotic Headlines to read more about the importance of headlines and headers for blog writing.

4. Use lists

Numbered lists or bullet pointed lists help people scan blog posts fast and find the information they’re looking for quickly.

5. Use punctuation

Use full stops, commas, dashes and colons to break up each paragraph into smaller pieces of information that make sense quickly. No one wants to read the same sentence several times to try to make sense of it. If you’re not confident about punctuation keep sentences short. As you practice writing and start to improve you can experiment and lengthen your sentences, chucking in a long one here and there to keep things interesting for readers, and make sure they’re really paying attention. Long sentences are fine but check that every sentence makes sense and the meaning is clear.

6. Short paragraphs

Because reading is harder online it’s best to break text into manageable chunks. Paragraphs should be much shorter online than on paper with two to six sentences per paragraph a good guideline for blog posts.

7. Font type

Sans serif fonts (without the squiggly bits) are generally supposed to be easier to read on-screen, in particular Verdana. Successful Blogging uses the serif font Georgia (with squiggly bits) which is also designed for easy reading on-screen.

8. Font size

Big is better. Teeny tiny writing is hard to read online, even for people with 20/20 vision like me. Make it bigger. Check out some of your favorite blogs, compare the font size they use and decide what works best for your readers. If they’re older they might prefer even bigger text than the average blog reader.

9. Be bold

Don’t overuse bold text or it loses its effectiveness but do use bold text to make a splash and highlight important sentences that will catch people’s attention and draw them into, or on with, the blog post. Blog writing magic ang blog post formatting

10. Drop the italics

Italics are hard to read in print. Couple that with on-screen reading already being challenging and banish italics from your blog writing. I hate them. If you can avoid italics please do.

11. Capital letters

Use capitals for proper nouns and at the beginning of sentences but avoid writing all in capitals because it’s harder to read. PLUS USING CAPITAL LETTERS CONSTANT IS THE ONLINE EQUIVALENT OF BEING SHOUTED AT. Sorry, just wanted to get the point across.

12. White space

Readers need somewhere to rest the eye and good blog layout leaves plenty of blank space. Make sure your blog isn’t too busy or distracting and gives readers somewhere to rest their eye from time to time.

13. Background color

Most blogs and websites get the contrast between text color and background color right, but make sure your blog background doesn’t make the text hard to read. It makes me sad that a white background with black text has become the default for most blogs. Bright yellow text on a black background is easiest to read but that’s a confrontational look. Dark text on a light background has a wider appeal but consider using another light color for the background as white gives off a harsh glare. There are plenty of choices which look good and are still easy to read but without the glare of white: try light grey, minty green or pale yellow.

14. Use images

Good use of images will draw readers in to your blog posts. Sometimes I read a post purely because I like the image. Ideally your images will add to your blog or emphasize your message. Even if they can’t do that use them to break up text, draw your reader’s eye down the page and reward them for reading and spending time on your blog. Some blogs like Viperchill turn their headers and sub-headers into images which makes the text look more attractive and helps people scan read.

15. Be consistent

You don’t know how readers found your blog. You can’t be sure if they arrived straight at your latest post, on your about page or via an archived post. You can’t know which order people will read your blog in so every post you write needs to tell the same story about you, your message, your blog and your values.

16. Tell a story

Speaking of stories, every blog post needs to have a beginning, a middle and an end. Think of it as an introduction, the main information and conclusion if you prefer. Even if you don’t give use those sub-headings because, hopefully, you’ve come up with hotter ones, do follow the convention to avoid confusing your readers.

Blog Writing Rules Wrap Up

You’ve probably noticed traditional media like newspapers are struggling and the Internet’s taking over. It’s amazing to think that in less than 10 years you may not be able to buy the L.A. Times or whatever your favorite newspaper is. Instead, you’ll download the thing to your iPad in a nanosecond and read it on the go. No dirty fingers, no struggling to read text that runs over a crease and no pages blowing down the street. I love newspapers, and I’ll miss them, but I look forward to the day when every blog is formatted and laid out so it’s as easy to read as one of those old newspapers. Now all I need is an iPad to read them on wherever I go. Have I missed any blog writing and formatting rules?

Blog Writing Magic Practice

Pick one of your favorite old blog posts and rewrite it or revise the layout for easy reading on the Web. Give it a new headline and repost it. Even if the blog content is the same, with a snappy new headline, some calls to action and some smart formatting, it should get more readers than it did the first time round.

Don’t Delay, Subscribe Today

If you like what you see here remember to subscribe so you don’t miss out on the rest of the Blog Writing Magic series. In the weeks to come I’ll tackle:

  • Blog editing
  • Blog writing practice

If you like these tips please tell your friends and followers by using the share buttons below or recommending this blog post in your favorite blog bookmarking site. Thank you, I appreciate your support and look forward to seeing you here again soon. Happy writing!

Click here to get your free “Blog Writing Magic” eBook.

Sue Anne About Sue Anne
Sue Anne Dunlevie is a Professional Blogger and Blogging Coach. She works one on one with clients to take their blogs to the next level. You can find Sue on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

Comments

    • says

      Hi Steven, well, I will have by the time I finish the Blog Writing Magic series. Half way through now and getting some great feedback. Thank you for stopping by, it’s great to see you:)

  1. says

    Hi Annabel,

    Thank you for gathering these comprehensive points on how to format blog posts. They are excellent. I certainly learned a few new and important tricks, that’s for sure.

    Overall, I rate fairly well on these, but my column width is to wide. Not as extreme as Under the Mango tree, but getting closer to 100. Plus my text background is white. I love the column width, so that’s hard to part with! I actually don’t like to read blogs if the columns get too narrow.

    • says

      Hi Sandra, glad you learned a few things. I wouldn’t be too hard on yourself for the white background. That’s quite a personal perference of mine and most people go for white. The column width though. I really recommend that one! Thanks as always for the fine feedback:)

  2. says

    Usually I read loads of ‘how to’ posts about grammer and great content and it seems formatting for easy reading is often neglected so I was really pleased to read these great, practical ideas.
    Do you know approx how wide in px 80 characters is?

    • says

      Hi Kate, thanks for revisiting GITHS and commenting again. These are the real essentials. Even bad writers can make their posts readable with a bit of easy formatting. Anyone can and should:)

      65-80 characters seems to be the general guideline. I used to aim for 72 which I learned when I was studying for my MA in Design for Interactive Media in 1995. I was a bit of a legibility stickler. It’s so important though:)

  3. says

    I could (and should) probably work on being more consistent. In fact, two months ago I challenged myself to a blog post (at least) per day. I did pretty darn good too. It was a way for me to challenge myself to think more and put it all out there. I think it worked well, but now, I’m back to my sometimes on, sometimes off self.

    Off to think about what to write next… :-)

    • says

      Hi Ricardo, great to see you here:) This is a tough one. It’s so personal. I’d love to know how different my blog would be if I’d posted daily but that’s impossible for me. I prefer high quality and less frequent posting:) Coming up with ideas isn’t a problem for me but sticking to a timeframe is! Hope you come up with a goodie and the Blog Writing Magic tips help.

  4. says

    TALENTED WRITER GIVES AWAY FAMILY SILVER – AGAIN!

    Yep, I’d definitely be selling this Intellectual Property. It’s gold dust – or should I say silver dust! ;)

    Well done, Annabel. ;)

    Robin :)
    My sharewords: helping you succeed in business.

  5. says

    Hey Annabel

    Excellent – and pretty much what I tell all writers to do, regardless of the type of document.

    After all, it’s all about the reader and what they want. Our job as writers and editors is to make every piece of writing as easy as possible for our readers to understand and respond to our call to action.

    I also like to use tables without vertical cell borders and as few horizontal borders as possible. Colouring alternate rows is often a better choice.

    So happy writing

    Desolie – sharpens your writing

  6. says

    thanks Annabel, great tips and guidelines.

    one other may be underlining text that isn’t a link – see this often in blogs and websites.

    cheers
    Heather

  7. says

    Annabel

    Great rules to blog by! As Robin says – gold!

    I never thought of the column width as being an issue, but just by looking at the image comparing the 2, it really does make sense.

    I don’t like reading fully justified text (straight left & right margins – not necessarily a newspaper as the columns are narrow), I’ve heard that it is easier to read text when only left justified (for reading left to right) (and only right justified for reading right to left) – what do you think?

    Sally ~ Advances Your Personal Best

    • says

      Hi Sally, there be gold there in that blog:) Thanks so much for commenting:) Oh, the kerning thing? Bad kerning is bad news. At least I don’t have to worry about that here on my blog. I don’t know the official rule on this one bu tmy personal preference is left justified…maybe because I read left to right?!

    • says

      Hi Carol, great to see you here and read your comment. I think it is subconscious really. We try to read a blog but it tires us. I want to leave my readers feeling fresh and energised so it’s important to me that the reading process is easy!

  8. Michael says

    Hi Annabel

    This is superb! 16 golden rules every blogger should follow; it’s definitely given me some food for thought.

    I can’t wait to read your post on blog editing :)

    Happy writing

    Michael

  9. says

    Great post Annabel! I agree w/ you on the white background and using images. I just find it more pleasing to the eye to have a nice contrast between background and type, and I’m a very visual person so I like images. I think you can kill 2 birds w/ one stone by using images to break up the post, thus working like ‘white space’ visually.
    I think my column width is good since I moved to blogger. It was too wide on the wp blog.
    Bottom line is still and always will be… good content!
    Thanks!

  10. says

    Your example of column width and Stacy’s site a great one. Just from looking at it for a second it looks much more readable your way. Column width really is a great point!

    I have used italics, usually for an “internal monologue” type of quip. But you make a good point against that.

    All your other points were also great , but those two particularly struck me.

  11. says

    Annabel, one thing is yet to be discussed. That is the use of American and British set of English. Both have spell variation and different pronunciation in most of the cases. People using British set of English in daily communication face problems when they compose their article in a word processor because most of word processors use American set of English and software start showing spell mistakes while actually they are not the spell mistakes. Now by making correction as per software recommendation, article becomes a mixture of British & American set of English. So it’s necessary to be stick with one set of English to make a consistency in article.
    Annabel, you have written a lot on writing, what’s your opinion on this issue? Shall people, with British accent and set of English, use American set of English on web because majority of stuff on web is in American English. What’s thought on it? A detail article on it will help to clarify the issue.

    • Sally says

      Hi Imran

      I thought I’d add a comment here before Annabel replies. I worked for a training company in a country where the population was well and truly multi-cultural and English was, for the majority, either their 2nd or 3rd language yet strangely it was widely spoken. When writing training manuals, we were directed to use British English for all words except where ‘…ize’ would be spelt e.g. instead of British ‘realise’ we had to write US ‘realize’. This mixed the two up. I had a discussion with a languages teacher about the impact of mixing up the two English’s and her opinion was that it was not helpful to the reader and confusing (even more so for those who have English as a 2nd/3rd language). So long as you are consistent with one, then use it and do not mix the two. I really struggled putting a few US words amongst the British ones as my English education has been based around UK English.

      This may be a little to the side of your comment (not directly related) to Annabel but I’d thought I’d share. I get the impression that if your post/copy is targeted to a US audience only then maybe consider writing US English however with so much that is accessible practically everywhere as well as the opportunity to discuss/clarify (comment boxes, etc) it may not be necessary to change between the two variations of English.

      When I get my site up and start blogging, I will stick with British English, it’s my native, and I’ll have greater chances of LESS typos and errors, etc. (Unless of course the topic is about US English then I may sneak a few of the US words in :-) )

      ~Sally: Advances Your Personal Best

    • says

      Hi Imran, good question! I’d say depends who your readers are. 50% of mine are from North America and that’s my target audience so I try to be consistent and use american english spellings even though I’m British/New Zealand and live in Australia! I also try to tailor my language and use words everyone will understand but let a few expressions I use slip in for the cross-cultural experience:) That way people get a sense of the person behind the writing. Hope that makes sense:)

      Thanks Sally, totally agree, consistency is key, no matter which you choose:)

      • says

        @Sally @Annabel
        Thanks for your detail comment to clarify the point. Problem is, as sally said, blogs are widely accessible and if we are not marketing some product, then we can say that we are targeting whole English speaking community inclusive of all people having English as their native and non native language. But again I have observed wide usage of American English. I am unable to understand why this is so. By doing so, we are going to be used to of mixture English. I realized this fact when I was writing a letter in my homeland to someone, where education is British English Based, and shocked to observe that usage of American English along with British became my style. I was using “z” instead of “s” and when I further probed the matter, I find that my pronunciation of words also changed to American style.
        Anyway, coming back to topic related to blogging. In nut shell, if we are targeting whole English speaking community, we shall use American English?

      • says

        Imran, yes, that’s correct. Globalization is at work! If you are targeting the whole english-speaking world then a good percentage of them will be North Americans. But you might want to focus on a particular market and keep your niche tighter…. It could make it easier for you and more appealing for your audience.

  12. says

    Great info, Annabel. It never occurred to me exactly why we skim read when we read on screen… we have no sense of exactly how long the blog is. I love the logic behind it… it makes it easier to keep that in mind.

    I have a tendency to SHOUT in emails… my wife has warned me time and time again and you confirmed it.

    • says

      Hi Rob, lol, SHOUTING is quite common. I tend to avoid it online quite nicely, now I just need to focus on not shouting at my kids in real life. Poor darlings:) If they could do what I asked first time round not third we’d all be on track!

  13. says

    Annabel,
    Great tips! Most I ‘knew’ but didn’t understand why. Just tonight I wrote a post and just did not like the way it looked. I figured out I did not have any sub-headers for one thing. Once I fixed that I was able to move on with my editing! As far as pictures go, finding pictures sometimes take as long as writing the post!

    I only started blogging back in May and when I look at those early posts, I think Ugh, what was I thinking?!?

    This series has been great so far! Can’t wait for more!

    Bernice
    http://bernicewood.wordpress.com/2010/09/03/so-what-is-good-enough/

    • says

      Hi Bernice, my first blog posts are badly formatted too, even though I already knew all this. My thinking was well no one ever visits my blog anyway but that becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Yes, it takes time, esp the images! But we have to do it well:)

  14. Marilia says

    There you go spilling all the secrets to blog success. Like you said in item 15, consitency is what your blog is all about (besides beeing truthfull to the other rules as well).

    Anyone landing on any post of yours will get the message you are spreading.

    Inspiring as always.

  15. Cate says

    Hi Annabel,
    a beautifully concise summary… can I buy into the ‘which English to use’ argument by reiterating your point about consistency being the important focus, and also being true to yourself.

    Semantically, I find American spelling (and grammar) a bit clumsy, but I also recognise that English as she is spoke is not the easiest thing in the world to grasp. I always like to remind people that Shakespeare employed 13 different spellings for his own name and actually invented a bit of the grammar that we ‘enjoy’ today.

    As always, love your post. Keep it up!

    • says

      Hi Cate, of course you can tell us what you think, we’re all eyes:) Hehe, I get that. I try to be consistent in the british/american english usage but I’m sure I muddle it sometimes. Plus I have a Kiwi passport and live in Australia anyway so if I get confused that’s my excuse:)

      We’re not machines are we? As long as we know the rules and try to stick to them or bend them to our means I think we can make it work!

  16. says

    It took me while to work out formatting things like lists and headings. They make such a difference to the readability of your posts. One day “when I have time” I want to go back to my first year of blog posts and format them properly!

  17. says

    Hi Annabel,

    Just wanted to say Thank you so much for writing such an informative and thought provoking article!! So much valuable information!!
    Great comments by others so I’ll just say ~ *Ditto* !!
    Before I race off to tweak (read ‘fix’) my Blog; I have a question if you don’t mind ~ I’m noticing of late that many people are leaving the date off posts/articles they have written. What are your thoughts on this?

    With warm hugs and gratitude

  18. Penelope J. says

    Annabel,
    Important tips and as usual, I got a lot out of your blog. However, while usually I read your posts when they come out, I delayed this one. What put me off was the title. 16 rules! Yikes, sounded like too much to digest. Once I started reading, I was hooked. A lot of good advice but you should add one more: Proof your blog posts for mistakes/typos that make it seem like careless writing.

    • says

      Hi Penelope, thanks for the feedback on the title! No more rules then… I just wanted to get a numbered list in to this series:) THe book should be out in October. I got a massive copywriting job in which lasted 2 weeks and blew my September launch out of the window.

      It is coming though! Thanks for asking and remembering!

  19. says

    Annabel,
    You’re points about column width, italics, and all caps were great reminders. I had become foggy on the reasons why they’re not good for online content. I’m guilty of using italics here and there.

    Thanks!

  20. says

    Hey Annabel

    NOW I know who you are! You’re the girl with the red flower in your hair!

    Totally recognize you now! lol!

    You should have just told me that last night hehehe!

    In any case, you have a fantastic thing going here! Love all the interaction you’re having with your audience. You’re a celeb!

    Gideon Shalwick

  21. says

    Happy to know that I’m not breaking the rules (at least the ones that matter). HOWEVER, I do have a white background (oops! sorry about the caps). ;)

    In addition was happy you gave a shout-out to the Verdana font, since that’s what mine is in. I just thought it looked the best when I was working things up.

    You have affirmed me again Annabel! :)

  22. Brett Vostro says

    Writing style plays a huge part in Blogging, I agree with short paragraphs – it makes content much easier to read. White space also helps as you say – things seem way to crowded if it’s just sentence after sentence.

    Good post.

  23. says

    I’m probably guilty of one or two of these…that aside (you know, because MY mistakes don’t count), my personal peeve is people who don’t use paragraph spacing! There’s one really popular blog springs to mind where the author doesn’t. maybe she writes her posts in Word and uses paragraph styling that doesn’t translate over to the text on her blog, I don’t know, but it makes her work really difficult to read so I don’t. I wonder how many MORE readers she’d have if she spaced her paragraphs.

  24. says

    Hi Annabel,
    After your visit to my blog, I followed up on your suggestion to check out these guide and I must confess it’s been very useful. I have done a total overhauling on my blog based on some of the tips you shared here. Thanks a million!
    Pls. kindly check it out my blog and let me know if there are any changes I need to still make.

  25. says

    Hi Annabel,
    I am only 6 weeks into blogging and I love finding treasures such as your blog to help me along. I am still playing with my first blog and am in the learning stages. Tonight I will try two new things, changing the background color of my next post and reworking an older post. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and great ideas. I look forward to more.
    Lyn

  26. says

    Thanks for providing textbook quality material. By textbook I don’t mean boring! This info is so easy to understand and useful that it makes one slap oneself on the head and say “Why didn’t I think of that?”.

    All these posts are being printed out and used as a reference.

    Thanks Annabel!

  27. says

    Whenever you are writing content make sure that it is likely to be valuable for your readership. This means that you need to know what type of readers are coming to your blog and exactly what content they want to read. Make it applicable and relevant to their particular needs.

  28. Dave Doolin says

    Haha! italics are awesome!

    You should know this from copywriting: it doesn’t matter what people like, what matters is what they respond to. And sometimes, stopping them dead in their tracks with judiciously placed italics are exactly right. As you so elegantly demonstrated above.

    Ta, -d

  29. John Bosco says

    It is wonderfull and very informative, dear Annabel. Thank you very much for providing a good article that can be of great help to people like me.

  30. says

    Thank you for taking the time to assist the nameless, faceless out there. It’s a daunting prospect, but one that anyone with a writing dream apparently needs to dive into. Thank you for making the water look a little less deep!

  31. says

    I read a lot of blogs, and I’m still surprized by the number of blogs that seem to post a stream of consciousness, instead of a formatted blog post. Especially when it so easily falls into paragraphs and the headings are obvious. As more and more content becomes available on-line, people are going to skim more – and if they reach an unformatted page, they’ll probably just hit the back button… I know I do!

  32. Rowlin says

    Well, this blog surely got my attention.
    I know that all beginner bloggers as well as bloggers tend to look for some information, tips and advice for their own blogs and if I must say is this the best site to come to. I simply love the way you write. It’s nice, fun and readible. Don’t forget the tips, now.
    Great post. It will surelly come in handy

  33. says

    Ohhh too much beneficial for me to read your blog.Before i have no idea to place content with formatting and how that was important in writing.Even just 5 minute before i have a blog with all italic phrases.After your suggestion i got a clear attention over how to format content on Blog.Thanks for your great and well written Article.

  34. says

    I’m new to blogging and searching to find uncomplicated information to help me get started. This post is very clear and to the point and will help me tremendously with my blogging en-devour.
    Thank you

  35. says

    Wow! Great post. I had no idea there were so much to take into account when blogging. I have been happily blogging along not knowing that i had to take background color and page layout into consideration all these tips are sure to improve my blogging and following.
    Thanks for the third time.

  36. Jason Effraimidis says

    Great post, and very informative and helpful if i may add. Some points i had been doing without readig them but some others have slipped from me.

    Good idea to rework posts, good get new readers and patch up old posts!

  37. sonam says

    Hey Annabel,
    Today I read about the blog writing really I would like to Blog writing, because of less information I could’t but after reading your post now I can say that I am feeling comfortable to take initiate to write blogs Thanks Dear Annabel..

  38. Orris says

    Dear Annabel,

    It is a very useful article. Having heard of blog writing, i have ventured into this area for the first time. Hope to write good and meaningful blogs based on the tips highlighted by you.
    Thanks,
    Orris.

  39. says

    You lead by example. I think anyone reading this blog post could skim it and learn everything they need to know about about writing a great blog post. This was very easy on the eye and the point about breaking text into manageable chunks is well made – and demonstrated.

    I’ve shared your blog on blogbods – usually we just wait for bloggers – or our users – do this themselves but this was so high quality that we didn’t want our newbie bloggers to miss out! You write simply and effectively.

    My only quibble would be that I was divided about the italics, because actually, when you used them, they really jumped out at me! So, I would have thought them quite effective (if used sparingly). But overall, this is probably the best post I’ve read…about creating the best post!

  40. says

    Thank you for your helpful guidelines. Do you have a suggestion for the most appropriate point of view to use when writing: first, second or third person? At first I would think “first” person to personalize as in a journal but I don’t think that’s necessarily a straight forward rule to use. I think perhaps it’s better to use whatever point of view is most appropriate for the context of the blog post. But I was also concerned about consistency. Any suggestions?

    • says

      Hi Barbara,

      Mix it up and play around to see what works best for your blog readers. I tend to stick to one person (first) because being personal is important but variety is good too as sticking to one format for blog post style would get boring for everyone. Hope that helps.

  41. Omar Khan says

    I am thinking of starting a website about my general views about life. I want you to suggest me a suitable title and give me some tips to improve my blogspot page. It would be highly obliged.

  42. says

    In what person should a blog be written? First or second? Is that a rule? I have taken an informal poll of peers and most say “definitely first” and always to be consistent. Although one “blog expert” commented try mixing it up for variety and do what works best for your readers. What is your opinion?

  43. says

    I’m not quite up and running yet with the website, so check back in a month or two, but I’ve been reading about blogging and need all the tips I can get. You mentioned that people can arrive at your blog from many different places and may be new to your site or to the subject of the particular blog. It helps me to read a blog in a new subject if abbreviations and idioms are defined in some way the first time they are used, so I don’t have to leave the blog to find out what they meant. I wholeheartedly agree with your points of using short paragraphs and bullet points to make the information pop. This is especially important if the subject material is complicated.

  44. says

    Its like you read my mind! You appear to know a lot about this, like you wrote the book in it or something.
    I think that you can do with some pics to drive the message home a little
    bit, but instead of that, this is great blog. A great read.
    I will certainly be back.
    Asperger autism recently posted…Asperger autismMy Profile

  45. says

    Hi,

    Thank you for your great tips! I’ve been blogging for about a year, and finally decided that I need to read about how to do it successfully. Your article is a wonderful source for new bloggers.

    Best,
    Lidia

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