A Rich Lush Template? Or a No-Frills Blog?

By: Guest Author

Certain niches just beg for a lush graphics heavy theme with elaborate javascript and css effects. Also, some graphically focused themes monetize better, and some widgets have seo and traffic generating value.

But on the other hand many blogs are smothered by slow loading pages and the point of your content and message can be lost in an excessively vibrant theme. Let’s have a look at the pros and cons of each.

Focus on Content

No-Frills: With all the shiny widgets, buttons, ads and layout design your reader is bound to get distracted. Then what happens? Well in most cases you get a skimmer and it ends there. The focus of your content is gone, and so is a potential follower.

Frills: Your reader may get distracted but using the right tools you could divert your reader’s attention back to the content. You could even motivate the reader to subscribe with the use of chunky buttons and links. This means, the reader will be reading a lot more content from your blog in the future.

Time Saved

No-Frills: Obviously, since you won’t be spending hours fussing over the aesthetics of your blog, you’ll save time. All the time you would have spent customizing and styling your blog can be spent writing quality content.

Frills: While great content is important, a nice looking blog only adds to the value of the content. And as far as the time spent is concerned, most blog embellishments don’t need to be updated that frequently. Although you may spend a good deal of time on it initially, once it’s all in place there really is no bother.

Navigation

No Frills: Without much doubt, a no-frills blog makes navigation easy. There are no flashy objects to distract and confuse the reader.

Frills: On the other hand, a complex layout often has widgets for recent posts, archives, categories, and other navigational tools that help the reader find what they want.

Speed

No Frills: Pages load faster on a simple template. The more you link to images, themes and layout hosted on other sites, the longer it takes for your page to load. Slow pages are turn off to everyone (ask your own self).

Frills: Pages do take longer to load when they are rich with widgets and graphics but it’s more alluring than a no-frills one. So you may have a better chance with getting a subscriber with the full frills blog.

Clutter

No Frills: A no-frills blog is reader friendly. Keeping the clutter low prevents your blog from looking like Times Square. This helps your reader assimilate content better.

Frills: However, it may make it hard to make a living. Lush templates are often optimized for advertising and monetization and also seo.

Although there are pros and cons for each, you want to think about the kind of topics your blog covers and if it needs that kind of a layout. For example, imagine discussing modern industrial design (a visually rich field) on the standard wordpress theme! Nobody would take you seriously. Similarly, if you want to talk about cancer research, you shouldn’t use a graphically intense theme that looks like a teenage girl’s My Space page.

So take a little while to think about the kind of topic that you write about as well as your target audience. Select a layout that fits the bill… I mean blog.

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