So you started a blog for business. Good job! That was the first step to boosting the online presence for your business. You probably don’t feel like you did much since it’s still a blank canvas, but just remember Rome wasn’t built in a day. I think it’s good to take time to launch your blog because you won’t skip over important details by rushing.
Are you ready to learn how to customize your WordPress blog? Good, because I’m ready to help you do just that.
Step 1: Blog Theme
The number one way you can customize your WordPress blog is by choosing a theme. There are thousands of themes out there. You want to make sure the theme you choose has the features you’re looking for.
Features to Consider
- Landing/lead page templates
- Easy to customize with colors and logos
- Appealing fonts
- User-friendly layout
- Primary and secondary navigation
These are just the main features I look for when choosing a new theme. While there are workarounds for themes they don’t possess these features if you can find a theme with all the right features it will save you a ton of time and headaches.
Free Themes vs. Premium Themes
I’m not about to tell you to go buy the most expensive premium theme out there. Nope. Not happening. There are some great free themes out there. Choosing a free theme that works might take a little more time to research for the right features, but it’s important to not go broke when starting your blog. If it’s not within your budget to purchase a premium theme, there are plenty of free themes to look at.
My Favorite Free Themes for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses
Why Premium Themes Have Their Advantages
While I do think a free theme can get the job done, premium themes do have their advantages. When you come up with your list of features you want your theme to have, you will find that few free themes will have them all. Premium themes, however, are more known for being packed with features.
I know what you’re thinking… “You just said there were work arounds.” Yes. There are plugins to work around what the free themes lack, but too many plugins can slow down your site.
Ultimately, the choice is yours. You just need a theme that works for you and your business.
My Favorite Premium Themes for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses
Choosing a theme for your blog can seem overwhelming. Remember, you can change your theme at any time. I do think it’s important to find a theme you love because when you love your site, your readers probably will too. So, choose carefully. Just remember, nothing is forever. If you’re unhappy, you can change it.
Step 2: Self-Design or Hire a Designer
Before we move on, it’s important you decide if you you really think you can handle self-designing your own blog. I am a huge fan of self-designing. It saves a ton of money and when you want to change something, you don’t have to wait on your designer to get back to you. You can customize your WordPress blog if you set your mind to it.
If you aren’t confident in your designing skills, let me just tell you about some of the amazing tools out there that can make self-designing so much less overwhelming.
My Favorite Design Tools
- Canva – Canva is my favorite online tool for designing my own images. They have a ton of presets and tools to make your images pretty. Canva is free, or you can upgrade to Canva for Work for $9.95 per month when paid annually.
- PicMonkey – PicMonkey is very similar to Canva, but in my opinion is not quite as advanced as Canva. If you need simpler, PicMonkey is the way to go. PicMonkey is free, but they do offer premium plans with extended features starting at $3.99 per month.
- Adobe Creative Cloud – I’m sure you’ve heard of Photoshop. It used to be a super expensive program. Now it’s offered through a subscription to the Adobe Creative Cloud. Plans start at $9.99 per month.
These tools make it easy to customize your WordPress blog without a designer. Seriously. If I can do it, so can you. Save your business a little money where you can. If you just aren’t confident enough for that, or maybe you don’t have the time, I understand. I would just be doing you a huge disservice if I didn’t at least tell you about the resources out there to help you design your own graphics and images.
Step 3: Choose a Color Palette
It is important to choose a color palette for your blog. It helps you brand your blog so it is recognizable all across the web. You should use the same colors across your social media channels as well.
Think about colors that align with the message of your business blog. Make sure you choose both primary and secondary colors for your color palette. If you need some inspiration, I love checking out the palettes on Colour Lovers.
If you already have a social media presence and you’re feeling stuck, share the color palettes your considering with your social media connections. Let people vote on the color palette they like best.
Step 4: Design Your Logo
I think designing logos are a lot of fun. Play around in whatever program you choose. Come up with a few different options. Try out different fonts. I like to combine fonts.
One thing I think is important when designing a logo is to make sure it’s not too busy. You want your logo to appear clean and neat. Your logo is one of the first things people will see when they visit your site, so it’s important it’s not chaotic. Keep your logo simple while still conveying what your blog is about.
If coming up with a great logo for your blog is eluding you, look around for some design inspiration. Even a simple Google search can help you find inspiration. Just remember to keep it simple.
Step 5: Customize Your WordPress Theme
Once you’ve chosen a color palette and designed your logo, it’s time to customize your WordPress theme. This is easy as long as your theme is simple to edit.
In your WordPress Dashboard, you will see an Appearance tab. Under Appearance, you will find Customize. That’s your customizer section for your theme.
Every theme is different. When you click on ‘Customize,’ you will find all of the options available to you to edit. There should also be a custom CSS area if you’re a coding king or queen. You should be able to change layout, colors, fonts, and more. Have fun and make your site your own.
Guess what?! Not only have you started a blog for your business, but you’ve also customized your blog. You’ve taken some major steps in your business. You have your content marketing and branding on point. Good job!
Don’t worry, I’m not going to leave you hanging like that. That’s not my style. I’ll be back to talk to you all about plugins next.