Wrote the guest post today at http://blog.ourchurch.com/2010/05/25/31dbbb-day-17-watch-a-first-time-reader-use-your-blog/ . My friend and neighbor, Joyce, volunteered to play guinea pig and help me with this project by reviewing my blog. She is almost a first-time reader. Would have been until I asked her to participate in my project. However, she is new enough to qualify.
Joyce and I spent about a half hour together Sunday afternoon while she scoured my blog. She used a gentle cleaning agent. I peered over her shoulder to observe what part of my blog caught her eye. Checked to see how long she spent on a post. Noted which links she clicked on.
Then the fun began. I peppered her with questions about my blog. What did she like? What attracted her? What did she think of the sidebar? Was the text easy enough to read? Had she ever clicked on the tabs at the top to learn more about me? And here’s the “ouch” part–What did she think of my header?
Surprisingly, she was attracted by the overall design. It had a feminine feel, she said. It draws you in to read the posts, which she liked because of their devotional quality. However, she said they should be shorter. As her time to read is limited, like most of us, the shorter the better. Along these lines, she stated that she had not looked beyond the posts, again because of time.
The photos highlighted the posts, she smiled, and wondered if they were mine. Yes to all except a few from mostly Google Images. (Note to self: take more pictures–of everything and anything. You never know when you will need one to match the topic.) Joyce also believed the Scriptural applications complemented the articles. Important point.
Joyce had several questions about the content of the sidebar and what all the logos stood for. She thought they might be ads. I have only one Ad–Psalm for the Day. All the rest relate to networks I follow. When she clicked on a post picture link , she was following the picture rather than the subject.
“I saw it was a picture of you and your husband, so I went there,” Joyce commented. So it wasn’t the title that grabbed her attention. Could be a problem.
Her only comment about the header was that a reader could tell the blog would have a spiritual emphasis. I still think the header is in desperate need of a photo or graphic with less design along the sides.
What do you think? It’s your turn to cast a vote, make suggestions, critique–even if something needs to go. Looking forward to all of your comments.!
“The heart of the discerning acquires knowledge; the ears of the wise seek it out.” Proverbs 18:15 NIV