What do you hope to achieve with your website? Let’s break this down so we can get through to what theme is best for you.
Many people blog as a journal. They enjoy writing about parenting or life or home renovation. Other people use their blogs to show off their culinary skills. They post mouth-watering photos and awesome recipes. And some people just want to sell their widgets or gadgets. There are lots and lots of reasons to blog, and you need to figure out your “why”.
Why!?! Why are you trying to make me think?? Isn’t this a place where I just buy a theme??
Yes, that is my service. But before you can jump into purchasing a theme, you need to be aware of your goals. Your money is tight and you don’t want to spend it on a theme that does nothing for you but look pretty. Let me give you a couple of examples.
Susie started a blog about her son’s rare illness. It’s mostly a way for her to share her experiences. Susie doesn’t need a fancy theme, right? Wrong. Even if Susie’s blog is “just” an online journal, she may be helping other mother’s with the same needs. She may find a community of women who need support. She could use her blog to help herself and others find resources to deal with the disease. But how can her blog reach others if no one can find a way to sign up to be notified of new blog posts? How can she be helping others if no one can easily find her old posts about specific topics? If she has a slow loading, ugly website, how will anyone stay long enough to learn what a fantastic resource this blog is? These are all issues that can simply and easily be addressed with the purchase of the right theme.
Nancy started learning calligraphy this year. She loves creating beautiful invitations and greeting cards. She sees many others making money selling their invitations and cards and wonders to herself if she could also make some money with her new hobby. But Nancy is not sure she needs a blog, let alone a fancy theme. She doesn’t have a lot of spare money to invest (because she’s spent it all on brush markers and calligraphy ink) and she doesn’t think a blog is a priority in her potential new business. But it is.
Spend some time thinking about what you really want your blog to be. Focus on what VALUE you will be providing your readers. While its human nature to focus on what WE want, your blog/website will need to be all about your ideal reader or customer. Look at and think about your site from your reader’s point of view. When you are spending some time in the theme demo, focus on seeing it from your readers’ perspective.