So you've got a blog with great content that will get you loads of readers..

.. but wait, give it a second look!
Does the great content get muffled by the dull appearance of your blog? Does it put off your readers?
Think! Think!
In fact, this is the problem faced by a large chunk of bloggers making up the blogosphere. They say 90% of bloggers are lazy... Let it not happen to you too!

I've not had very much experience blogging, but I think this post will help most of you to improve your blog's look (content? no. that depends on you!).

So let me give you...

"The Ultimate Guide To Pep Up Your Blog!"
*Drumroll!

Let's start with...

The Template:

It all started with the template. Remember, before you started customizing, before you even started posting, Blogger asked you to choose a template, from the fifteen or so ones available on Blogger. Now I'm not saying that those templates are crappy, most of them are good (i friggin love the Tic-Tac and the Rounders series!). But with these, you are sure to run into some other blog sporting the same template. Wanna switch to something more unique? Something that suits your blog's theme (content's) more? Read on:

When I re-designed this blog, about 90% of the time was spent in choosing a template. So now I kinda know a truckload of places that provides Blogger templates, no sh*t. For free of course!
Here I am listing out the ones I found most useful:

eBlogTemplates - Tons of templates for Blogger and Wordpress. You can find all the popular ones here.
BlogSkins - Templates created and uploaded by other people. A really huge collection, so you might get some cool unique ones here.
jackBook - Has many Blogger templates converted from WordPress.
FinalSense - A small number of beautiful, quality templates.
BloggerTricks - Again a few templates created by a guy, some of them are real nice.

You might also want to check out these blogs:

Awesome Blog Templates
3 Column Templates 4 Blogspot

Here are some Cool compilations that will help you choose from the best:

BloggerBuster : 101 Excellent Blogger XML Templates
Mashable : 50 More Beautiful Blogger Templates
Mashable : 70 Fresh and Modern Blogger Templates
Mashable : 10 Unique Blogger Templates

So how do you actually change the template?
* Goto 'DashBoard' --> Layout --> Edit HTML
* Click on 'Browse' button to choose the new template's 'xml' file from your computer
* Click upload.
... and you're done!


Gadgets, Widgets, etc.:

Are your blog's sidebars empty? Fill 'em up with some nifty Widgets and Gadgets.

Widgipedia has a nice collection of widgets that you can add to your blog. Just copy the Widget Embed Code from Widgipedia and add it as a 'HTML/Javascript' page element to your blog.

Gadgets can be added from the 'Blogger in Draft' dashboard.
Haven't heard of 'Blogger in draft'? I can't blame you.. sometimes I can't help thinking that Blogger is keeping it a secret from most bloggers...
like Hangar18!

Login to your 'Blogger in Draft' dashboard here.


Compress the CSS, Pack It Up!


Compressing the CSS of your Blogger Blog might be a good idea to make your pages load faster. You don't wanna be putting on pots of coffee everytime you wait for a page to load, right?
Use a free service like CleanCSS to compress the code.

* Goto 'DashBoard' --> Layout --> Edit HTML
* Select the check box 'Expand Widget Templates'
* Your Blog's CSS is the code between the and tags. Copy it, compress it with CleanCSS and copy it back in place of the old code.

Make sure you backup your template before fooling around with it!

You can also play around a little bit with the colors on your blog from 'DashBoard' --> Layout --> Fonts and Colors'. Changing colors to match the theme and your writing style would be great!

I hope these tips helped you improve your blog and make it more personal (or professional, whichever way tou wanna go!). Good luck pepping up your pages...
keep bloggin! :)

13 comments:

Aslam's World said...

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Aslam's World said...

nice blog..keep up the good work

mantiz said...

thanks for the review dude.. I'll be more than happy to link back to your blog:)

TheAbacus said...

Really good tips you've given. But I'm a complete newbie to blogging. What are the advantages of the 3 column template?

Nice blog btw.. Really. And hats off to you for being able to play the Master of Puppets solo! Holy crap! Put up a recording!

mantiz said...

hi abacus,
with a 3-column template you can house more gadgets, ads, etc on your blog. But do it properly or the pages will look too cluttered.
...and about the master of puppets solo, I cant play it anywhere as fast as kirk does lol.
thanks for dropping by, and good luck with your blog :)

TheAbacus said...

I think its a huge achievement that you can actually play that solo! Its one of Hammett's greatest solos.. from the good old speed metal days of Metallica.

Thanks for the tips and the comment! :)

mantiz said...

yeah the MOP era was metallica at its best! I'm looking forward to their new album, Death Magnetic. Hope it'll be good... btw I've already heard a riff off it, and it is pretty awesome!

Mr. Limbo said...

Hey spud dude, remember me? So, As you seen, I like to keep my blog simple.
I don't want my visitors to get lost or confused with a lot of gadgets and hype.
Furthermore, if you post helpful lists and links, then Google will rank you better.
There are some other tricks too, but best to just check out my blog now to how this works. Thanks for all your tips!

Shiva said...

tried most of the links...
changing my template...
wanted to Ask u somethin'
is eblog templates running a bot or is my comp. screwed up.(well it is)
but plz open it urself and then reply 2 me @

CrAzYbLoG
v.CoL

mantiz said...

hi mr. limbo,
righto, sometimes its best to keep it simple and clear.. I liked your blog, it's easy on the eyes.. keep bloggin pal:)

mantiz said...

hey shiv,
no, its not showin any problem with me bro.. please check it again.

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mantiz said...

^^^

get a fucking life!