In my post Mr. Grumpy Goes Blogging I set out a few suggestions to help people build better blogs. Today, Mr. Grumpy Returns to share some additional suggestions. A few of these ideas come from readers of the original article who wanted to add their own nuggets of advice for creating great blogs by avoiding common pitfalls.
Why do we need to know the time on your website? So many cool sites have these giant clocks that, when you mouse over them expecting some kind of fun interaction, we get a giant Ad instead. Once you’ve been burned by one clock, you ignore the rest of them with an evil eye and a hard heart.
There’s a lot of pink out there! Pink belongs at home on baby blankets and not online because it makes our eyes bleed. A little pink is okay. An entire site in Hot Pink gets quickly clicked away.
A lot of people love to “Spam” a blog with their website addresses embedded in their messages. Either moderate your comments or delete those Spam comments forever so we don’t have to read them.
People who love to pick stupid fights in your comments bog up your blog. Don’t argue with idiots in your comments area because they are not worth your time. Just let them swing in the wind without a response or, better yet, delete the comments so we don’t have to wade through their vile spittle to find the sweet you. A blog is not a democracy; a blog is your Kingdom!
You are not the Vegas Strip. You are not Times Square. PLEASE KEEP THE FLASHING TO YOURSELF! Flashing lights and flashing animation quickly tires the eye. If you insist on having animation that flashes at us, please limit it to a few flashes and then let it return to the natural state of being “off.” Our eyes thank you.
ALL CAPS IS YELLING IN EMAIL AND IT IS YELLING ON YOUR BLOG! OUR EYES ARE TRAINED TO RECOGNIZE WORD SHAPES BASED ON THE CHARACTERS IN THE WORDS SO WHEN YOU GIVE ALL THE WORDS THE SAME, CAPPED, SHAPE WE DON’T WANT TO READ ANY LONGER! SAVE THE YELLING FOR A FEW WORDS WHEN YOU REALLY WANT TO BE EFFECTIVE!
You have a “Dark Site” if your blog’s main color is really dark or completely “Black.” Black, as a color, is hard to render on a wide variety of screens across the world. So what might look really cool to you on a Black background will likely either appear too dark to see or too grey to comprehend for the other 99% of the eyes peeping your site. I know you want to be different and daring and scary and Goth — but there’s a reason all the major mainstream websites stick with a white background — readability. We grew up reading black print on white paper and the Web — and your blog in particular — are built to be an extension of hardcopy so make it easy to read because you would not be blogging unless you wanted to be read.
We don’t care how many visitors you have had or have online or where you fall in species advancement. It gets old after the first few click-throughs. Unless your intention is to have us to leave what we were doing with you to do it somewhere else, get rid of the temptation to click off.
Don’t put information farther away than one click on your site. If we have to drill-down through categories and areas and sponsors and Things That Flash and and and… to find what you promised to tell us one page one we will leave your site in tears from tearing out our hair.
What Am I?
We do not care what kind of… Coffee you are, Cartoon you are, Cloud Formation you are, Insect Larvae you are, Cabbage Patch Kid you are, Pop Tart you are, Steroid Baseball Player you are, Assassinated President you are…
We don’t want to know how much you’re bleeding or why you can’t fit into your favorite pants today or that your Midol stash has run out. Please save us from the bloody details and allow us just a little bit of dignity while we visit by keeping us out of what’s happening between your thighs.
We know you love your husband but dedicating an entire blog to him just because you think he’s the best-ever hubby bores us. Now if you’re there to rib him a bit and rough him up a lot, we enjoy that kid of schadenfreude — better him than us — but the idolizing and pedestal placing isn’t effective. Are there “Wife Idolizing Blogs” out there? If there are, let me know, because I have yet to see one.
I love a well-written and witty Mommy Blog but a lot of people wrote me to beg you to share more of your life online than just talking about your kids. They want to know about your wishes and your dreams — BUT NOT YOUR PMS! — beyond the diapers you change and the dinner you’ll be cooking later. They want to welcome the woman behind the mommy. That’s it for now! Mr. Grumpy is out there… reading you… and taking notes… 🙂