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Jul
14

Front Page Blog Layout Above The Fold

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Strong front page blog layout above the fold was one of the first blog principles I learned from my first online mentor.  First impressions do count and… you don’t want to scare your readers away before they get a chance to read your great content.

Header Titles and Sub Headlines Are The Key

Whether it’s your header title, or your sub header title, it should state exactly what your blog is all about.  State your general blog theme. This is not the time to use “catchy or cute phrases.” You only have 3 to 5 seconds for your reader to make a decision to stay or not stay.

Header Titles and Sub Headlines are the key for getting your readers curious enough to want to see what you have to say on your general subject.

The Title Of Your Blog Post Can Cause Readers To Want More And Bring You Future Readers


The next thing your reader will look at is the title of your present post.  If they like what they see… they stay.

Keywords take priority over cleverness.  If you have good keywords in your title, half of your future promotional battle is over.  I’m not saying you can’t be clever and create curiosity with your title.. but you need to blend keywords and cleverness together.

If you do it right, you will have readers find a particular post for years to come.  Google likes that and of course… you will too.

Where Is The Opt-in Box Golden Spot?

We all know the power of creating a list of readers that you can contact later.  Don’t make it hard for your readers to sign in to get a newsletter, or other information you are offering.  Make sure your opt-in box is above the fold so they don’t have to scroll down to find it.

Actually, the top left hand side bar is considered to be the “golden spot” for your opt-in box because we read from left to right and it’s the first area that folks look at after reading your blog title.  However… WordPress theme developers must not know this because so many themes only offer a single side bar or sidebars that are on the right.

If you have the option… put your opt-in box on the top right side of the your blog… in the “golden spot.”

Use A Clever Photo

Don’t underestimate the power of a clever photo to get your readers to want to scroll down  or “click more” to read more of what you have to say.  If your photo is particularly clever, take up a good portion of the space above the fold.  I love photos… I think they are the frosting on the cake.

Take Advantage Of A Read More Breaking Point.

If you go to the first page of a blog you have two options for getting your readers to see more.

There is the standard “Scroll” down where readers can see the full text of every post you have written up to 10 posts.  As a reader… I personally prefer this option.

However… as a blogger and marketer, the “Read More” feature is the best for SEO purposes.   If the reader can only see just a portion of your post  it gives you an opportunity to create mystery and curiosity to read more.  Also… when they click on “Read More”  it will take them to a new page in order to read the rest of your content.

When a reader clicks on more than one page… it increases your “page views” and it will help your blog ranking.  Google see folks clicking on a second page as a sign that readers like what they see and want more.

If you don’t know how to make the break in your page… I’ve included a screen shot of tool bar where this handy tool is located.  Just place your curser where you want the break and click this handy little tool.   There you go…. a”Read more” break.

When possible, put your break is above the fold and add a sentence or subtitle that will cause your reader to want to “read more.”

“Above the fold” is a big deal… so…go take advantage of it.

Til, later,

Kathryn Griffiths

P.S.  Remember, your front page blog layout can make a difference in whether folks spend time to read content, opt-in to your e-mail list or just click away.

Technorati Tags: blog, blog format, blog layout, front page

Categories : Blogging

Comments

  1. I agree.

    The term “above the fold” comes from news papers. The important and eye catching information of a news paper is what you would see when the paper was folded and put in news stands.

    A website is no different. Like you say…you must catch that visitors attention.

  2. Totally enjoyed this post, Kathy!

    I’ve visited tons of blogs and web sites where I’ve had to hunt all over the place for either an opt-in box or an RSS icon, etc., only to find these items collecting dust bunnies at the bottom of the page.

    Most people aren’t as patient as me and won’t take the time to search around. Above the fold is definitely prime time real estate on your site!

    Melanie

  3. Great information here! Above-the-fold is the key to keeping new visitors on your site. Much research has been done on this topic and you have hit all the high points in simple, easy to understand language. No need to re-invent the wheel. Follow Kathy’s advice and your blog will entice more readers!

  4. Thank you so much for explaining how to get the “read more” feature — I’ve seen it in your posts and others and couldn’t see a place in WordPress. I love the reminder to keep the important things above the fold! Most people are in such a rush you really do have to keep the priority items up at the top.
    Evelyn