Monday, October 13, 2014

Changing of the Colors

Sometimes the best way to make a change is to do something drastic. Like remove the background I've been using for years. The background I love adore. The background that is truly me.

So I did it.

I removed my background.

I've always said I never wanted a white site, and we both know that using words like always and never is never a good idea.

Maybe I was holding onto my pink and green stripes too tightly...

Losing readers is something I've spent a lot of time thinking about over the years and lately too. I want to know what makes a person leave a site.

As I've tweaked my focus from time-to-time I've seen people stop following, and I'm good with that. Time is such a huge issue for everyone and I'm honored and humbled that anyone reads my blog--when I started blogging it was out of obedience, not to be found by others. I've worked at staying obedient even when it felt I wasn't doing what should be done to build my site. I want it to be relevant and good. I want people to leave with a smile, sometimes. I want to give them something to think about, sometimes. Sometimes I post things because I feel I need to.

Recently, on Facebook as well as on my agent's client loop, I asked for input on my site and my friends came through for me. They gave me encouragement and things to think about and opinions--I asked for opinions. =) I'm so thankful for all their input! I will be making changes here, as soon as I settle at home for more than 5 days in a row. LoL.

Some of the responses to my request for input made me think about what makes me leave a site...and there are some sites I will NOT go to, some that I leave without reading a word of the content (content I know they have and would like to read), and some sites that I'll scowl as I read the content and leave ASAP.

What is it that makes me leave a site like that?

  • Black sites or too-dark sites. I just can't do them--can't read white text on a black or dark background without killing my eyes and my eyes work hard enough without adding to their struggle.
  • Evidence that the site owner doesn't care about how the site looks. I find this in content-is-king-everthing-else-is-stupid group. Yes, content is king, but if the owner demonstrates they don't care about their site, why should I?
  • Cluttered. AND, I've found that this is very subjective. What I find cluttered is far different from what a minimalist finds cluttered. 
  • Ugliness. There. I said it. If I come across a site that strikes me as ugh-gly, I leave. Sorry, but I do. Chance are that I'm not the only one.
The interesting thing has been to see how my site fits into half of those categories (some people hate pink and my site is was definitely very pink). Do I have to please everyone? No way! It's not even possible. But, I can find a way to mold what I have here into something that doesn't drive people away before they read a word. And that's what I'll be working on. I may find something I like quickly and easily, but then again, it may take several tries. I'm not in a hurry and I want to get it right. The site may be pink when I'm done with it, but I doubt it'll be as pink and as bold as it was. The thing is, I'm staying open to change. So, if you see me changing faster than the trees up north, please bear with me. 

So tell me, what makes you leave a site?

7 comments:

  1. Over the last few years, my writer website has become simpler & simpler. I want it to feel like me, but just like my home, it's not just mine. It also belongs to those I welcome there. If I don't feel comfortable to stay at a blog long enough to read, then I won't stay. I'm not going to force myself to stay somewhere uncomfortable, not for a blog. There are exceptions. I wouldn't expect the "front door" of a thriller writer's website to be warm & cozy, but if I don't feel like there's room enough to pull up a chair (the clutter), or that the writer didn't leave a place for me... well, I mozy on. It also means, for me, that if it's my professional blog, then it needs to be free of anything political or offensive (granted, that is a tricky thing sometimes), unless that is what that writer writes. Like all things, it's not one answer for everyone but in general, if I feel like I have (because of the atmosphere) invitation to stay, I will.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lynn, you put that SO well. And you're right on. =]

      Delete
  2. Super-long posts will make me go away (or at least visit less frequently!). Sites that make me think they were thrown together in two seconds (sorry!) also turn me off BIG time. Sites that are tough to navigate can also be a pet peeve, though I have been known to stick around with a grumble if a place is especially dear to my heart (I think you know which site I speak of, my friend - NO - not yours!).

    And sites with many grammatical and/or typographical errors? THOSE make me cringe. And most likely NOT return. A couple here and there is one thing - but riddled? Buh bye!

    (and I missed a monkey - though those colors are GORGEOUS!)

    Great post! Looking forward to seeing your site evolve. I think mine needs to as well...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I need a like button here on my blog. LoL.
      YES. I totally agree with those, Joanne!!

      and don't worry, the monkeys aren't gone--I just didn't let them have their Monday today...and they aren't happy about it. Especially Toby. LoL.

      Delete
  3. I don't like to go to a site and have music that comes on automatically. I find it distracting while I try to concentrate on what I'm reading. I don't mind links to music - I have the freedom to click or not to click that way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Bonnie! You hit on my biggest pet peeve--music that comes on automatically. Too often I can't find the off button fast enough so I close the tab...without reading a word. =[

      Delete
    2. YES! This one drives me bazonkers too!

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