Sometimes being a blogger is no fun.
I don’t mean that from a, “Oh, woe is me, I have to blog” point of view. Nor do I mean it from a, “Why hasn’t my blog been turned into a book yet?” viewpoint.
Besides, how much of a letdown would a book that’s made up of recycled blog posts be?
No, it’s more from the perspective of getting the best user experience, without overloading that same experience with too much clutter (and when I say user experience, I mean it from you, the reader’s, point of view).
For example, anyone that’s read my blog for a while will know that I’m constantly experimenting with design, features and layout to make your time here worthwhile.
I really appreciate you taking time out of your day to stop by here, read what I’m thinking, and then share your own thoughts in the comments.
So one of the areas I’ve experimented the most in is the comments section. I’ve tried third-party comment systems (then switched back); video and audio comments; and commenter social profiles with Twitter and latest blog post options amongst other experiments.
And still I stay undecided at times. Just the other day, I tweeted that I almost switched back to the Disqus comment platform following their new updates, but that I’d miss CommentLuv too much (Disqus isn’t compatible and I think CommentLuv is one of the best blogger tools out there).
Another option I can never make my mind up about is social sharing. This is where, if you like the post enough, you can share it with your own networks (Twitter, Facebook, Stumbleupon, etc).
I’ve messed around with a few options here too. Sexy Bookmarks, Add This and BackType are three that I’ve used previously.
Currently I use Digg Digg, which provides the floating share option to the left of this post. I also use Share This at the bottom of each post, to offer a wider amount of networks than Digg Digg. And then there’s the Apture Bar at the top of the page, which I’ve just switched back on and only comes into view as you start scrolling down the page. (Note: since posting this I’ve had to switch the bar off as it looked like it was causing formatting issues on my design).
Yet is this too much? Just right? Not enough?
There are a ton of other little things like this that I constantly question when I look at my blog. While I write what I’d like to read, obviously a big part of any blog’s “success” is its community, from readers to commenters to subscribers. So making your experience a good one is just as key as me writing a (hopefully) good post.
Perhaps it’s just part and parcel of being a blogger? Always questioning not just your content but the content area. And perhaps that’s why bloggers are such an oft-misunderstood crowd – if we don’t know ourselves, how can anyone else?
How about you? If you blog, do you go through the same indecision and similar questions? And if so, what are some of the things you’re constantly asking yourself?