Choosing website fonts can be daunting.
But the choice you make matters. The fonts you choose on your website need to reflect the style of product or service you are selling, as well as being clear and readable on any size screen.
Here are my 5 Top Tips on to choose the best combinations of website fonts.
1 Choose the same font family
If you want to guarantee that different fonts you choose for your website match, choose two from the same family.
Roboto has three main styles, which all work together, and have a clean, contemporary feel.
PT Serif offers a great contrast to PT Sans, but, because the fonts have the same fundamental proportions, both still work together.
2 Combine a Serif font with a Sans Serif font
Serif fonts are designed for reading in volume – the serifs help encourage the eye to move along the line, a bit like joined up writing.
Sans Serifs fonts, which were first designed in the 19th century, are, as the name suggests, without the little serif lines. The clean looking fonts became key to modern design.
The classic choice for written content is Sans Serif font for headlines, which is combined with Serif font for body text.
But why not mix it up? I really like using a Serif font for headlines and Sans Serif for body text, for an more modern style.
Font Pair is a great resource to see how different Serif and Sans Serif fonts work together.
3 Choose website fonts with maximum contrast
Add real character to your website, and choose a loud bold display font for your main titles.
Display fonts are designed to be used sparsely, with just a few words, which means that these fonts are suited to Site Titles and Page Titles, rather than blocks of text.
For maximum impact, combine with a super-simple font for the main body text.
Use it as large as you dare!
4 Make use of free Font Combination tools
The web is full of typeface devotees who have made fabulous websites to share their love.
Scroll through and find some inspiration on choosing typefaces:
- Typotheque: extremely quick and easy to use – just drag and drop different fonts to see how they look.
- Typespiration: a huge range of examples, with filters to help you find what you need.
- Typewolf: a carefully curated selection – great if you don’t want too many choices.
- Google Fonts: hundreds of fonts, available for free, with popular combinations to test out.
All our Flat White websites come with the complete set of Google Fonts, so their tool is a great way to try out combinations and recommendations.
5 Find inspiration with other website fonts
Look at other websites for inspiration.
Have a good look for websites that use combination of fonts you like, then find out what fonts have been used.
Use the Inspect Element tool in Google Chrome. Firstly, right click on the website page, then highlight one or more words in the font you are interested in, and finally scroll down the right hand panel to find “font-family”.
Cabin Condensed is the font we use for both Headings and Body Text on our website.
Read more top tips for website branding in our guest blog by branding expert Vardeep Edwards.
Ready to take the next step on your journey to getting your website?
Find out all the options we offer – from a Landing Page website, which is the quickest way to get up and running, to a full multi page website with SEO analysis, Google Analytics, and full Stripe integration to sell goods and services.
Transform your photography skills by following a website photography expert’s top tips – Guest Blog by Katie Vandyck, of Katie Vandyck Photography
Your website photography will improve immediately if you take advantage of natural light, so try and take your photos on a sunny day.
Website Photography Tip 1:
Place the object you want to photograph in the shadow area next to the brightest spot you can find.
Let’s have a look at these keys. This bunch of keys present several challenges to photograph: the shine of metal, the range of materials and the numerous bright colours. Bright sunlight is too harsh, and solid shadow is too dull.
The extreme contrast of bright sunshine is unattractive, it washes out colour and exaggerates flaws.
For a better result, place your object in to a shadow area that’s directly adjacent to a patch of bright light.
Website Photography Tip 2:
Place a reflector next to the object on the shadow side.
To give your photos extra glow, put some reflecting material, white paper or card on the shadow side of the object.
What happens when you use reflecting material?
- Light spilling into the shadow area from the the bright area is then reflected back into the shadowed area by the white reflector.
- This reflected light lightens the darkness/shadows on the side furthest away from the bright light.
Result: rich colours, and metal that has a soft sheen.
Here’s another example using a pot of coriander:
Bright sunlight, which is harsh and drains the colour.
The pot is in shade, with a reflector balanced alongside.
The combination of diffused light and a white reflector makes the coriander look much more appetising than when it’s lit by direct unfiltered sunlight.
Now I’ll show you through some examples of website photography using natural light.
Example 1: Photographing food in natural light
Food will look much more vibrant and appealing with diffused natural light.
The photos below were all shot beneath the perspex roof of a courtyard at the Italian restaurant, which immediately diffused the bright sunlight. The reflectors on either side of the food reduce any shadows and allow the wonderful colours of the food to come through.
Sunlight through the perspex roof, combined with reflectors on either side of the food, soften the shadows.
The bright, diffused light from overhead is particularly good for food, making everything look fresh.
The closer you move the reflectors towards the food, the softer and more appealing the light.
Insider tip: I used insulation tiles as my reflectors, propped up by whatever came to hand.
Example 2: Photographing silver jewellery in natural light
The challenge with photographing jewellery is to capture the detail of the craft.
The first shot is in bright sunshine. It looks a bit cheap and garish – more of a snapshot than a photograph.
It’s a very sunny day, so I made a makeshift structure from wire and grease proof paper – essentially a homemade light tent.
Earrings inside light tent.
Shot from above, the silver glows, and the details are gently rendered. And it’s always worth trying out different backgrounds for one shoot.
Example 3: Photographing pottery in natural light
Strong sunshine coming through a window creates a bright shadow. I’ve used a sheet of coloured card as a backdrop.
I placed the pottery inside the shadow. I then placed a polystyrene tile on the shadow side of the pot, seen on the right of the photograph.
Result: a soft but directional light bringing out texture, allowing a richness of colour and luminescence.
Copyright: Katie Vandyck Photography 2020.
Check out our blog for more useful tips on websites, or get in touch if you have any questions.
Every business needs a website. But not every business needs a complex website.
It is easy to add unnecessary content to pad out a website with the mistaken idea that this will make your business look more professional. And it’s just as easy to miss out the really essential content users need because you over simplify – especially as you know all the ins and outs of your business and might forget that new potential customers might not.
Below we guide you through the main features of Single versus Multi Page Websites, the Pros and Cons, and examples of the functions that a business needs that would suit the different types.
What is a Single Page Website?
A Single Page, or One Page, Website is where all the content is accessed from a single page.
Users progress through content by scrolling. Although there might be navigation included, this takes users to another section of this page, not a new page. (Our Flat White Single Page websites, for example, include in-page navigation to an About section, a Services section and a Contact section.)
Click on the video below to see how the scrolling and in-page navigation works:
What is a Multi Page Website?
A Multi Page website offers unlimited options: from pages and blogs to eCommerce and portfolios.
Multi Page websites have one or more menus to navigate the content. Different content might suit different users, so a range of experiences can be offered. An existing client might simply want contact details, for example, whereas a potential client may want to find prices and examples of options.
Because of the greater options, a Multi Page website is suited to any scale of business, including a start-up. The video below demonstrates a Multi Page website with the main navigation:
Pros of a Single Page:
Quick to set up
A Single Page Website has less content and therefore takes less time to set up. As you are focussing on the core elements of your product or business, being concise about what you offer is key – no room for waffle!
No navigation to plan
Getting navigation right can be one of the hardest elements of setting up your own website if you have no experience. Some Single Page websites have in-page navigation to take users to more important sections of the page, but not a full navigation. Our websites, for example, include in-page navigation to an About Section, Services Section and Contact Section.
Ideal for mobiles
All of the content on a Single Page website is accessed by scrolling. Scrolling is easier and more continuous than single clicks, which might take users away from the journey. And we all know how instinctive it is nowadays to scroll on a device.
Keeps user engagement
Some users prefer to keep on scrolling, rather than clicking to another page.
Cheaper hosting is available for Single Page websites because they take up less bandwidth, and templates are simpler and cheaper too.
Cons of a Single Page:
Only one url
When sharing content on social media, for example, only one link is available, rather than dedicated content for, say, your Workshops or your About Page.
The other side of the coin – if you have several services you want to promote or several projects you want to showcase, the single page format is too limited.
Content from only one page is available for search engines to rank, which means that, unless your content is very finely tuned, it will be harder to drive traffic to your website via SEO.
Difficult to expand as your business grows
The beauty of a Single Page website is it’s simplicity, so adding too much content to one page starts to defeat the object.
Pros of a Multi Page:
Full range of content
A Home Page that operates in a similar way to a Single Page website, but with the added bonus of linking through to more detailed information on separate pages.
A user can either be guided to different areas of content through Calls to Action, or can find their own way to the content they want via Menus.
Blogging is the best way to improve your SEO rankings by adding regular new content to your website.
Selling direct through your own website
Products or services can be sold directly through your website, rather than sending traffic elsewhere.
Cons of a Multi Page:
Can get unwieldy
Navigation menus can all-too-easily get out of hand. If a user has to click too many times to find what they want, they will go elsewhere.
Surplus content is unhelpful. Just because you can add lots of pages doesn’t mean your website will be better.
Takes longer to set up and keep up-to-date
Good content takes time. The more pages you have, the more content you have to add, and the more content you have to keep up-to-date.
More pages will result in a website taking longer to load. If your images are optimised and chosen carefully, this shouldn’t be a problem. But if too many pages contain large images, your website will load more slowly. And users are notoriously intolerant of slow-loading – much longer than a couple of seconds, and they will look elsewhere.
How to decide on the right website for your business?
Spend time right at the beginning planning – in broad sweeps – the purpose of your website.
- Is it to sell products?
- Is it to get people to sign up to your newsletter?
- Is it to provide a point of contact for customers?
- Is it to demonstrate your skills with examples of your work?
- Is it a glorified business card for people to check out your work and get in touch?
When would a Single Page Website work?
If your business has a clear, limited focus, a Single Page website is a quick and efficient place to start:
- Practical details – a cafe, for example, could feature a few menu items, with opening times and location.
- A single service such as workshops, with external link for bookings.
- Consultancy business, when the main selling point is you.
- Credibility – a legal firm, for example, where you need to show your professional credentials and contact details.
- Sign-Up for a newsletter or event, for example, with a simple Call to Action for an email address on the page.
Check out this fashion website, where the main focus is a Sign Up.
When would a Multi Page Website work?
If your business has several elements that you want to share with potential customers, a Multi Page website will provide the plenty of options:
- Blogging about your business
- Selling multiple products or services
- A range of services that you offer – rather than overloading the home page with too much information, take users to individual pages where they can find out more.
- A portfolio of projects e.g. garden designer
Have a look at this Social Media Specialist website, which details a range of services and workshops.
To get an idea of the difference between a Single Page and a Multi Page website, take a look at the different options we offer.
Any questions? Just ask – we are happy to help.
One of the oldest computer support suggestions (and one that quite often works) is, “Turn it off and then turn it back on again”.
(If only we could do that with the real world).
When someone is trying to work on their WordPress website and can’t log in, the first thing I will generally suggest is that they clear their caches. Most people haven’t a clue what I mean, so I will explain in this blog.
A brief history of browser caches
In the olden days before we had fast broadband, it took ages for big files on websites to appear on our desktop browsers. So the browser designers decided that, when a website had information which appeared on several pages, a copy of the information from the website could be kept in a cache on your computer. It would then be much faster to use that cached copy rather than download it every time for every page.
The whole caching idea is really clever. Unfortunately, it can cause glitches when the caches display old versions of files that have since been updated on the website. So sometimes we have to delete all the old files and start again – ie – clear the caches.
Reasons why you need to clear caches
Logging in to your website can be affected by caches because you might be logging in to a cached page, rather than a live page.
If you are updating your website, you may not see changes you have made, such as changing colours or fonts.
How to clear a cache
Below I have listed some of the most common browsers – If you can’t see yours, get in touch with details of your browser and I will add details or send them to you.
To clear caches in Chrome:
On Mac – Click on Chrome in the menu bar (otherwise click the three dots on the top right of the browser window and go to settings, advanced, privacy and security, clear browsing data)
Next – Click on Clear browsing Data
Make sure you have ticked the boxes you want to clear (at least cookies and cached images and files) then click on “Clear data”
To clear caches in Safari:
Click on Safari in the menu bar
Next – Click Preferences
Click on Advanced and tick the box at the bottom that says “Show Develop menu in menu bar”
When you click on Develop – you will see “Empty Caches” – simple as that – go ahead and empty caches.
To clear caches in Firefox
Click the menu button (at the top right of the window) and choose “Preferences”.
Select the “Privacy & Security panel”.
Scroll down to the “Cookies and Site Data” section, click “Clear Data”
On the next screen, tick both boxes then click on “Clear”
To clear caches in Microsoft Edge
In the top right, click the three dots.
Next – Click Settings which will open a new page and on the left click on Privacy and Services
Click on Clear browsing data – tick Cached images and files (you may also need to tick Cookies and other site data) then click Clear Now.
Any questions? Get in touch. We love sharing our knowledge.
If you have your own business, you will know how important it is to have your own website.
But it can be a daunting process when so much that is written about websites is full of confusing jargon.
So here is our Glossary of the most common Website Jargon. And we’ve included tips about how to maximise your website’s potential too.
Above the Fold
All the content that is visible when you first land on the page, before you start scrolling. The phrases comes from newspapers, when the most important content was put on the section that was, literally, above the fold.
Tip: include key information here, plus reasons to scroll down or click on a Call to Action.
All websites must be accessible for people with disabilities. When websites and web tools are properly designed and coded, people with disabilities can use them.
Content needs to be accessible, as well as website design. Images, for example, need “Alt Tags” are descriptions added that describe the image in words, and will be used by screen readers.
Alt Tags are descriptions added to images that are used by screen readers to describe the image to website visitors with limited or no sight.
Alt Tags have to be manually added to every image you upload to your website.
Below the Fold
Below the Fold is all the content on your website that visitors see when they start scrolling. Scrolling has become normal behaviour for anyone checking a website, so Below the Fold content is now as important as Above the Fold.
Tip: Include content that expands on the Above the Fold introduction – examples of your latest blogs, or some tasters of your products or services.
A Blog is dynamic content that is published regularly, as opposed to static content that makes up most website pages. A Blog can be separate from a website or form part of a website. Penny’s blog goes into more detail about the difference between a blog and a website.
Tip: If you do include a blog on your website, make sure you publish new content regularly – weekly or monthly.
A Web Browser, or Browser, is the software used to access and view websites. Google Chrome, Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox are the most popular, and each offer slightly different functionality.
Caches are used by computers to store information and speed up the loading time of a website. The very first time you visit any page on our website, for example, the browser downloads the logo, and several other items, into the cache, and then displays it as part of the page you’re viewing. For each additional page you visit, as long as the same logo is displayed, it doesn’t need to be downloaded again — it’s already on your hard disk.
Sometimes, caching prevents a website page displaying the most recent information. If this happens, you can “clear the cache” – this blog gives excellent instructions for each different browser.
Call to Action
Whether it’s “Contact Me”, “Get A Quote”, or “Make a Donation”, a Call to Action is the best way to encourage your visitors to delve deeper in to your website. It can be a Button or a Link.
Make sure that any Call to Action is clearly distinguishable on a page, and make sure it’s clear what happens when someone clicks on it.
Every website consists of a combination of different content – words, images, animations. This content is displayed by a web browser that interprets the different programming languages, or Code.
Content Management System (CMS)
Behind every website is a good Content Management System, or CMS. This is where you edit all your content – images, blogs, contact details – and make sure that your website is always up-to-date. We use the WordPress CMS for all our websites.
Cookies are small files that are stored on a user’s computer, and are designed to store a small amount of information specifically relating to a website and the user of that website.
If you use Google Analytics, you will be using cookies on your website. Anyone that visits your website needs to know that cookies are being use, so you need a banner asking a visitor to accept cookies.
Every website needs a domain name – ours is newflatwhite.flatwhitedesign.pw. Read Penny’s blog explaining Domain Names in more detail.
We are guessing that everyone knows what an email is. Here are some extra points:
- Make sure that you have a personalised email address that matches your domain name (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org) – it looks much more professional.
- Make sure your email address is really easy to find on your website. Don’t just include it on your Contact page – add it to your Footer too.
- Set up all your emails to come into one folder – it’s much more efficient that checking all your email addresses read Fred’s blog that gives step-by-step instructions how to do it.
A Favicon is an icon that appears alongside your website name in the tab of your browser window in Chrome and Firefox (favicons are not used in Safari).
It’s usually very easy to add these to a website within the CMS, and really helps to clarify your brand.
The Footer is at the bottom of your website, and is the same on every page.
Tip: include your contact details, and an extra menu for useful pages.
A Graphic Image Format is an image file which is compressed to speed up loading time. It’s designed for images with only a few colours, such as logos, rather than photos.
The Header is at the top of your website, and includes your Site Title and your Navigation. The Header will include the same information on every page. Depending on the design of your website, this content may stick to the top of the page and be visible when you scroll, or disappear.
A description of an image that fills the screen when you land on a website. It forms part of the Above The Fold content.
Tip: choose a simple Hero Image that works with your written content.
Every website needs a Hosting Company to save your website files on a Web server connected to the internet. A hosting company hosts these files, and ensures that your website is visible anywhere.
A Hosting Company might also be your Domain Name provider, but you can also buy your Domain Name from a different company.
Namecheap is the Hosting Company we use to host all our Flat White websites.
HyperText Transfer Protocol is the agreed procedure for transferring information on the World Wide Web. HTTPS is Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure – look out for the little padlock symbol alongside the website name in the address bar.
Google now warns any visitor to a website that doesn’t have HTTPS that the site isn’t secure. Make sure that your website host provides HTTPS.
JPG or JPEG
An image file – the best choice for photos on a website.
Keywords are the words and phrases that people enter into search engines. If you boil down all the content on each page or post on your website down to simple words and phrases, those are your primary keywords.
As a website owner and content creator, you want the keywords on your page to be relevant to what people are searching for so they have a better chance of finding your content among the results. Keywords for this page, for example, are “website jargon”.
Tip: make sure you use keywords naturally in your content to help your SEO – “keyword stuffing” will de-value your content.
Links – short for “Hyperlink” – take visitors to another place on a website. An Internal Link takes a visitor to different pages or sections of the same website. An External Link leads to another, separate website.
Tip: Always make sure that the link text is clearly distinguishable in your text – ours are red.
Meta Data is used to describe individual pages on a website. This data allows search engines to understand what each page is about, evaluate the relevance of the content, and determine whether a page will or will not be displayed within search results.
Meta Data for a page or post consists of two parts:
- Page, or SEO Title, or Title Tag – maximum 65 characters.
- Meta Description – up to a maximum of 150-170 characters.
Meta Data for pages and posts can be added via the Yoast PlugIn in WordPress.
A Permalink is the permanent URL for a page. This appears in the address bar – for this page, it is flatwhitewebsites/website-jargon. When you add a page or blog to your website, you will usually have the option to edit the permalink – in WordPress, this option appears at the top of any page or blog:
It is best for your SEO to make this as simple as possible – for this blog, for example, I changed the default wording, which comes from the title, “Glossary of Website Jargon” to “Website-Jargon”. Shorter permalinks are preferred by both search engines and users.
Tip: remove “stop” words e.g. and, to, from your Permalink – but make sure the meaning isn’t altered.
A tracking pixel, or Pixel Tag, is a graphic with dimensions of 1×1 (a single pixel) that is loaded when a user visits a website or opens an email.
Pixels are typically used to track certain user-based activities. Popular tools like Facebook, Google Analytics, and MailChimp all use pixel tracking to provide campaign analytics.
A Plug-In is a piece of software that adds extra functions to an existing computer programme, such as a website.
WordPress offers a huge range of Plugins. Like phone apps, these can be either free or paid-for, and add all sorts of functionality to WordPress websites, including Google Maps, Monster Insights (for Google Analytics) and Yoast (for SEO).
A responsive layout means that a website adapts to different screen sizes. If a website isn’t responsive, the content that is designed for a desktop screen will be much too small to read easily on a phone screen.
Because the majority of website visits are now done via a mobile, search engines penalise websites that aren’t responsive.
A search engine is software that searches the databases of the world wide web according to a user’s query.
Google is the best known example, but Bing and Yahoo carry out the same function.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the rankings of a web page (or website) in a search engine, such as Google. Good quality SEO allows a website to maximize its visibility in a search engine result page (SERP), resulting in “free” or “organic” traffic.
Tip: top quality content, written for humans, is the best way to ensure great SEO for your website.
A URL (or Uniform Resource Locator) is the same as a Permalink (see above).
Any website terms you are still confused about? Get in touch, and we will add them to this Glossary.
Alt Tags describe the image on a website page for screen readers.
If anyone is using a screen reader rather than seeing the content on a screen, an Alt Tag ensures that the visitor still has full access to the content. It is therefore really important to add useful Alt Tags to all your images to ensure that your website is fully accessible.
Website Images and Alt Tags
Key point: Alt Tags describe an image for anyone using a Screen Reader.
Why is it important to use Alt Tags?
Key Point: make sure the Alt Tags are accurate descriptions of your images to maximise your SEO.
How to Add Alt Tags to existing images
Top Tip: go through all your images in your Media Library, and add descriptive Alt Tags.
Adding Alt Tags when you upload new images
Top Tip: make sure that you Alt Tags include relevant keywords that also describe the image.
Google gives a great example of what you should – and what you shouldn’t – include in Alt Tags:
Read this blog for information about how to help your SEO even more by editing your website Meta Data.
Pin for later:
It may not seem as though launching your website requires an act of bravery but, for many of us, it does.
We think that when we press the button and the website goes live, the whole world will be able to see our tiny imperfections.
Trust me – they won’t.
We also have this bizarre belief that the minute it’s live, we will be inundated with demands – the whole world has been waiting for our launch in the same way as people wait for the latest iPhone.
Don’t worry. Unless you have spent a fortune on hyping it all up on every social medium and TV outlet, you will be able to cope with the demand.
For most of our prospective clients, a website is a cross between the online equivalents of Yellow Pages and Who’s Who.
Website visitors want to know three main things:
- what you are offering,
- who you are, and
- how to get in touch.
If you have some testimonials on display – even better. If your colour scheme and fonts all stack-up and you have some nice pictures, they will feel comfortable and like your style even more.
One of our all-time, favourite poems is:
“Come to the edge. We might fall.
Come to the edge. It’s too high!
COME TO THE EDGE!
And they came – And he pushed – And they flew”
Christopher Logue (often misattributed to Guillaume Apollinaire)
If your website has enough on it to be “good enough” (not perfect) then, be brave – and fly.
We set up Flat White Websites because we know how scary it is to launch your first website. We’ve been there! So all our websites comes with a Home Page, an About Page and a Contact Page. You can then choose the best colour and font blend for you.
Check out what we offer here. And you can read more about how our websites work here.
What’s holding you back from launching your website?
Meta Data is the information that is displayed about your website in search engine results.
You can control the information that is shown by editing the meta data within your website’s content management system. Adding keywords will make sure that your website’s SEO is in great shape.
What is Meta Data?
Key point: add keywords to your Meta Data.
How do I edit my Meta Data?
There are two ways to edit your Meta Data:
On individual Pages and Posts:
Top Tip: best for checking that your Title and Description are the optimum length.
2. Edit more than one Page or Post via the Yoast Bulk Editor:
Top Tip: great for checking that all your pages and posts have up-to-date Meta Data.
Here are some useful reminders:
- Add your most important keywords to your Meta Title and Meta Description.
- Maximum characters for Meta Title: 60.
- Maximum characters for Meta Description: 160.
- Go to the individual page or post to check that the Meta Data fis the optimum length.
- Use the Bulk Editor to check any gaps, and do quick tweaks.
Sign up to our Website Wisdom newsletter to make sure you can launch your website with confidence.
However much we have planned and however much we like the idea of getting our website live, we all put off the moment of truth with different styles of excuses.
We kid ourselves with questions and answers like:
“Have I uploaded the best possible pictures? A better one might come up next week (or next month) – phew, I can delay again.”
“Is my copy as punchy, detailed, witty, professional as it should be? If I leave it for a couple of weeks, I might come up with another idea – phew, I can delay again.”
My question to you is, will it ever be perfect or is it good enough now to do the job?
Let’s start by looking at what your website is for.
- If it is to promote your business, have you defined what your business is?
- Have you explained why your business will work for your prospective clients?
- Have you told them how you/your business will help them?
If the answer to all three questions is yes, and you have a some great pictures to make the whole thing more appealing, then it’s time to launch your website.
The following quotations both explain why beautifully:
1. A good plan, ……. executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week. ~~ General George S. Patton, Jr.
2. Le mieux est l’ennemi du bien ~~ Voltaire – (Perfect is the enemy of good).
If you want people to know what you are up to, a website that is “good enough” will do exactly that. One that is still not live and is still seeking the perfection that never, ever arrives, will not.
Be brave – go for it.
Our websites are specifically designed to make it as simple as possible to get your website live. All the basic pages are set up, with the layout ready for you to add your content. Check out an example here. Want some extra hand-holding to get your website ready to go live? Sign up to our Bite Size Website Wisdom, where we send you monthly tips to get you on your journey.
Blog v Websites – confused?
First things first:
All blogs are websites, but not all websites are blogs.
Now let’s dig a bit deeper.
What is a Blog?
A blog is a dynamic website where the blog posts or entries are published in reverse chronological order. When a visitor lands on a Blog, the most recently published content is shown first.
The word “Blog” is shorthand for “Web Log”, which were originally personal journals shared online. Blog content is now often called “Entries” or “Posts”, so a Blog will consist of a series of regularly published “Posts”. The content is usually broken down into different categories too, so it’s easy to find relevant content.
Because of the more personal, informal nature of a blog, readers can often interract with the content via Comments or Likes.
What is a Website?
A website is a collection of static content displayed as one or more pages. Once published, it will stay in the same arrangement until it is updated.
Every website has a Landing Page, usually called the Home Page. A traditional Website will have a static Home Page, where content is laid out according to the importance of information, not according to the date it was published. Having introductory sections on your Home Page will lead visitors to other parts of the website, such as Contact Page, About Page, Terms and Conditions, etc.
You have control over how information is displayed on every website page, so can guide visitors around your website and encourage them to buy your product or get in touch.
Blog v Website: which is better?
Hmm. That depends. If you want to share your favourite recipes or engage with like-minded people, a blog is the best starting point. If you want to sell products or services, a static website is best.
But the best option is to have a website which includes a blog. This is because static and dynamic content are treated differently by search engines.
Posts, which are dynamic content, are published differently to pages, which are static content. When a post is published, it is “pinged”, which means that search engines are immediately aware that there is new content at your domain address. When pages are added or content on pages are edited, there is no notification to search engines that this has been done. Therefore, it is valuable, if you want to rank more highly be search engines, to publish blog content.
Do Blogs and Websites need domain name?
Both Blogs and Websites need domain names. (Read our blog about Domain Names here.) You can start a blog on a blogging platform such as WordPress.com or Blogging.com for free without having your own domain name – in which case your domain name would be myblog.wordpress.com. However, it is much better to invest in your own domain name right from the start, so you can have myblog.com.
Do I need a separate Website and Blog for my business?
No. It is much better to have a blog as part of your main website.
Can I have a Blog on my Website?
Yes! In fact, we would thoroughly recommend having one. It is the best way to ensure that your website is regularly updated. Search engines rate blogs over static information, so a blog from your website is more likely to be ranked more highly than information published on a page.
WordPress.org is our favourite platform for combining the two – you add Pages for the static, evergreen content of your Website, and Posts for the regularly posted content on your Blog.
All our websites are WordPress because we believe it is the best way to add both static and dynamic content. And because we practise what we preach (most of the time!), we have designed all our websites with a Blog included because we believe it is the best combination for any business. (Check out our packages here.)
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