10-Minute Touch Up: Avoid the Wallpaper Effect

The 10-Minute Touch Up is a quick, weekly challenge to get you DOING, not just reading about doing. Consider it a way to touch up your blogging just 10 minutes at a time!

10-Minute Touch Up: Avoid the Wallpaper Effect- a little tip on getting readers to take notice!

Avoid the Wallpaper Effect

Challenge:  Move a couple of things around on your blog to wake everyone back up!

Why: Ever go into autopilot when you’re driving a routine route, then get to your destination and think:  “Gee, I don’t even remember getting here.” When people visit your blog multiple times a week, your blog design and layout can become wallpaper for them. Meaning they don’t really even notice your sidebar or footer any longer, just like you get used to passing all those houses, stores, and restaurants on a route you drive every day.

For ads, you may have heard the term “banner blindness.” Well, I use the term wallpaper to encompass more than just ads. By moving, adding, or switching around some elements on your blog, you can jolt people back into paying attention.

How to Do It

The easiest place to make noticeable changes are on your sidebar and footer, but you might even change up your homepage. Let me get you started with a few ideas:

  • Change our a social media embedded profile with another one (like removing a Facebook Like Box and replacing it with an Instagram widget).
  • Add something new to your sidebar (just make sure it has value)
  • Change the colors of your SM buttons (okay, this’ll take longer than ten minutes, but if you’re bored with your buttons, then go for it!)
  • Rearrange widgets (such as switch around your Search Box and your Categories listing)
  • Update affiliate ad with another design the company offers
  • Move an ad position (if you aren’t bound for it to be in a certain spot)
  • Add images and links to your most popular posts
  • Link to an informational page (like a Resource page) from your sidebar or footer

Your Turn

What did you move, add, or switch out on your blog?

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  1. says

    So you know how to set up google analytic to either track or just run a report showing how often someone clicks on the stuff in your side bar. For instance I have a featured post in my sidebar which I kind if forgot about but I would like to see if I change it up if people would use it. How can I tell?

    • Melissa Culbertson says

      You can try Crazy Egg, which is a heatmap tool which tracks where people click. Also try within GA, Behavior>In-Page Analytics. At the very least, you can just check how many visits that page got last month, then check it in a month and see if it’s higher. That may be the easiest way to go. Hope that helps!

  2. says

    Thanks for the challenge, Melissa!

    I shortened my “About” box and changed it’s placement. I’ve been wanting to do that for a while and just didn’t. It took me a few more than 10 minutes…but it’s so worthwhile. I will keep in mind that I need to make small changes like that regularly. Hmmm…maybe I’d better go write it down and schedule changes. 😉

    Best wishes for an extraordinary day!

    • Melissa Culbertson says

      Great idea! You can set a reminder every 3 months or so to move something around!

  3. says

    This is exactly what I’ve been trying to do for the past few days. Now I think my site looks too manic. I’m trying to to make it look more simplistic, but failing. You did give me a few ideas. Thanks!

  4. says

    Great ideas! I’ve been making so many changes working through your book, that I think I’ll give the readership a break from change for a bit. (And I need the break, too!) Tucking this post away for when the boredom returns. :-)

  5. says

    I just added a new sort of “header” image to one of my sidebar sections to draw a little more attn over there.

  6. says

    I like to toy with different sidebar images for my newsletter sign-up. I usually design one in Canva and then change the colors to create a few more. I switch up the freebie offers in each one and voila- get to testing them out!

    • says

      You are an angel sent from heaven! I was just searching for a way to change the colors on my (old) logo sans the Photoshop and was about to head over to gimp when you mentioned Canva! Bless you, both of you! (I hope I can do this, it might be premature to comment but it sure was a boon.