Your blog is awesome, you’ve got lots of killer content and some regular readers. But what about those eyes that fall on your blog for the first time? Are you losing opportunity because your blog doesn’t create a strong enough first impression?
Do you have
- an ugly blog that makes small children cry and your dog cover his eyes with his paws?
- a boring blog with zero zing?
- or a blog that fails to stand out in a sea of sameness?
It doesn’t have to be that way.
The Collective Inkwell can help you.
Collective Inkwell is now offering to critique your blog. Why? Two reasons.
1) We’re kicking off our own Reno-Blogging services to help remodel your blog.
2) There are countless blogs that could greatly benefit from a simple helping hand.
If you want your site exposed to a no-holds-barred, honest critique with a helping of humor at your blog’s expense, post a comment here with your blog address and simply ask. We may feature your blog in an upcoming edition of Make Over My Blog!
Along with our reviews, we will offer a few tips and tricks to make your blog awesome. If you decide to hire us to help, we’ll even give you a discount!
What we will do
- Check out your site for design and visual appeal. Does your site hurt our eyes? Does it look like one those AOL pages from the late 90’s? We’ll tell it like it is and spare no feelings.
- Look over your site’s content. Are your posts too long? Is your site’s purpose immediately clear? Do you have lots of obvious errors?
- Review your site’s layout and usability. Is your site’s design intuitive or do first time readers have to jump through hoops to figure things out? Is your blog full of clutter? We will tell you what your friends won’t. The unbiased truth.
We have no idea how many people will take us up on our free offer, so we’re going to take them on a first come, first serve basis. In some cases, blogs on life support may get rushed to the front of the line. In other words, if you’re in a rush to get your blog reviewed, you may want to hire us.
If you would like a private consultation, our services can be had for a small fee of $60 via PayPal. You can choose whether you want your review publicly posted on our site or private, sent to you via e-mail. And, if you pay us, you can choose how you want your advice: Straight up and a bit kinder (for those who don’t appreciate snarky criticism) or with full snarkiness intact. We definitely understand a lot of people don’t have the time or skills to devote to making their blog pretty and would never want to make anyone feel bad.
If you decide to hire us for a consult, we will deduct $25 from your first custom design order.
Some of the things we can do to make over your blog
- customize your WP Thesis theme
- Install Thesis on your self hosted WP site
- create unique custom illustrations (banners and other site graphics) from a professional cartoonist for any web site.
- craft custom SEO and landing pages to help your blog be found by search engines and readers
- devise a custom color theme for your WP blog
- advise you on the best usability practices on the web
- help you determine which items to keep on your blog and which to get rid of
- ghost write copy for your site
Got more questions or want to hire us? Contact us at collectiveinkwell AT gmail.com.
Speaking of blog makeovers, what follows was by no means an ugly blog, but it was a blog the owner felt was a bit boring and in need of a makeover.
We’re proud to present our first public re-design since starting Collective Inkwell. For some of our work on our other sites, check out our illustrations page.
Our good friend, Tracy O’Connor of the popular site, I Hate My Messageboard was bored with her theme.
It was an out-of-the-box free WP theme lacking any color or custom graphics. It was, in a word, dull. With her site’s recent explosion in popularity thanks to her humorous posts, sense of community on her message board and the occasional gross food post, she was ready to take things to the next level. She wanted a design that matched her blog’s buoyant personality.
I did a consultation to find out what she was looking for. We bounced some ideas back and forth and quickly hit on something that represented her awesomeness.
The first thing I did was upgrade Tracy to Chris Pearson’s premium Thesis WordPress theme. It’s what we use here and on our other sites. From its ease of use and flexible design features, to its SEO optimization and stellar typography, Thesis is our favorite theme.
Tracy’s old theme (click the image to make bigger).
After the upgrade, I created a custom site color scheme, a custom logo/banner and custom sidebar graphics for her social media and subscription buttons. Additionally, Tracy wanted a colored sidebar and some space for 125×125 ads above the fold. We brought all of this together using a custom designed style sheet that made her site look like this.
We’re thrilled to say that Tracy LOVES the re-design as do many of her readers. And we love Tracy! Thanks for being our first public makeover.
How much does a blog’s appearance affect your reading habits?
What are your pet peeves with blogs (content or design?)