Your blog template design is half of the battle and to win this battle join me and see what you need to see before selecting a professional template for your blog.
Alright everyone so you are in search of a nice looking professional template for your new blog…right?
No worries I will tell you how to detect, sniff and test your favorite template before buying and many more so here we go.
First of all inspire yourself
Yope you need to get a lot of inspirational fuel by viewing top bloggers template designs and other blog templates. Find them, dig them, surf them, watch closely…try to view in pixel perfect vision. Check latest design trends and typography styles.
Best place to buy professional templates for blog
I don’t know if there is any good place more than themeforest to get professionally designed templates for blogs and other niches. I believe that there are also other places rather than envato like you can land on joomshaper, Joomlabamboo and Icetheme. All of these sites are serving good templates but let me tell you straight these are not so professional as themeforest. They also have the biggest showcase for functional web templates I strongly recommend you to go for themeforest as also being a professional web developer I know they have maintained unusual high standard for their customer which other template providers unfortunately don’t have.
Check out our most searched post on: 28 Responsive WordPress Themes For Bloggers
How to see if a template is really powerful as you think it is…
Yes there are many ways to check whether your selected template is bug free or not. At first you need to make sure that you have done a maximum possible surfing of template’s online demo. Don’t left anything even the smallest. You can do this by simply visiting all menu pages and sub pages of template. Another thing which is not ignorable is to read customer reviews before purchase.
Check customer ratings also and see what happened to them after getting that template. Also keep an eye on how developer responds to his customers this is very important because every customer who buy online templates must need to talk developer so the relation between web developer and template buyer is most important. Don’t run after chocolate read entire specifications, framework details, third-party plug-ins check everything.
2 most important factors in every blog template
The brain of every blog template is always hidden in 2 stones. One is blog layout style “Home Page” and second is “Article page” between these 2 spots you can find anything. If home page give you the feel of your kind then go for it but there are some points which I need to discuss.
What to see in Blog Style Layout?
First comes first…I am talking about menu. Check menu’s capabilities is so important that ignoring this factor can easily kill your blogging future. You need to see how much modifications you can do in future like positions, margins, colors, back grounds, sticky layouts, Custom modules in menu items, videos in menus, Menu levels and cross browser compatibility check all these things.
Here we meet sliders!
Do you love image sliders for your home page? I love them I think many of us love them but not everyone especially the visitor I don’t know why but trust me your visitor will never want to see banners and image sliders on your website as they just want information….The stuff they are dying for! Not for your sliders. I know many geeks will not agree but the fact is you can go with sliders but why? People who are running big sites with big data will understand what I am trying to say.
Did you ever seen any slider on technorati, mashable, parezhilton, smashingmagazine…no you did not see anything like slider. They don’t have space for such things. In my opinion the purpose of sliders is to attract buyer to grab template immediately so I just want to say that don’t get panic after watching a sleek and modern slider…just calm down and go ahead there are many things need to be tested yet.
Columns and their spacing
Well this should be your own choice and requirement normally It should be 2 columns templates like left content and right content…you can have 3 columns if you wantJ but check that how you can do this in templates back end when you need to mess up with this core function.
Typography & CSS
Take a detailed tour on all pages of template to see text styles and their sizes. Check all H Tags and make it sure that template has functional Google fonts. Check Html validation and CSS validation from W3C markup validation service.
Check template page loading time & speed
Copy demo link of template and open Google’s page speed insights. Here you can test and analyze template page performance. This can be very useful to make your decision.
What to see in article layout?
Here we are at dante’s peak… Many things still need your attention before rushing towards PayPal and crying forever. This is the place where your visitors will land from everywhere. Many newbie’s often forget that they should look for article layout rather than inspiring by the home page decorations. Here are some interesting points which you should must consider to check.
Is there enough space for ad placement?
Yes this is what you will need in very near future right after getting little bit traffic. Deeply observe how this template is presenting ad space on article page. Don’t forget to see if template have a placement available for Bi fold (above the article) advertisement banners.
What kind of modules is available at right bar…?
Typically at right bar of all blog templates there should be very informative modules like latest articles or hit articles module display, Face book fan page module, Email subscription module etc. Check and see how smartly your upcoming template is displaying whole blog information at right bar as this is a psyche of a visitor to look around your right bar while surfing and reading your stuff.
Is there any real comment system exist ?
When I say “real comment system” it means template should have fully functional comment system which will be able to deal with spam in later stages of your blog. built in comment systems in wordpress and joomla are not able to facilitate you with some important functions like email notification to admin when comment post or user friendly log in function with social media websites like twitter, facebook and google. You will need to get livefyre or disqus commenting system for your blog so better check it out before purchase.
Don’t ignore error page!
Blog templates without a well designed 404 error page often appear like a haunted house when visitors found themselves on a broken linked page where there is no one to tell them where to go and what to do now I strongly recommend to check out error page as all quality template providers are selling templates with well designed 404 page.
It must be responsive!
Never ever think to buy a non responsive template as people will not be able to browse your website on mobile…It is indeed as simple as water.
Browse at 1024 X 768
This is same test as responsive…You should check that how your template will look on low resolution screens. You will see an entirely new look when you will switch your screen at 1024X768. In my opinion this is how you can take off your templates clothes and observe it naked:)
Very simple there are some rules which you need to follow in order to get a high class professional looking template for your blog and here they are…
Why to never use free or hacked templates.
I never understand why people always search for free templates on Google. That was not shocking for us when we see our Top 13 free word press themes 2013 rising lightening fast on 24K hits in just first month of post was published.
Let me tell you clearly what I observe as a taboo in free templating is free templates are first of all vulnerable!!! They have hidden back links and in common poorly programmed and structured for long run. Situations can become so worst that there is no end even your adsense codes, your passwords, your PayPal account details, your email subscribers list and lots of other stuff which is so much important for you can hacked any time because you are using a free template!.
Some stupid geeks decide to download hacked versions of pro templates and start their blog well what I can say about it…This kind of approach is out of my mind as being a professional blogger and web developer from last 7 years I know very well that hacked templates have logical reasons behind the scene.
In fact some big giants like template monster who have tons of useless template crap they leaked bundles of their templates as hacked versions and spread them on some free stuff providers…That’s all it goes viral and if you are in a country where law enforcement is strong they will knock you down and will take you in court to empty your wallet as soon as you will publish it online and if you think yourself as a smart guy living outside this is no problem for them as they can grab your other stuff as well.
I am not blaming on template monster, sometimes there are hackers behind the scene who want to get access to dedicated servers to send massive spam emails or want to spread their viruses although I know mainly hacked templates are big business for some template providers but whatever the game is…
It’s not for us not for real bloggers.
I hope this long stuff has made up your mind in a right direction which is called “Blogging”.