Words on a Page Writings about writing

The case for the minimal blog

A road sign with the word 'Blog' on it

Far too many blogs, even ones that I enjoy and regularly read, can be difficult to read. No, I’m not talking about the writing on those blogs.

What I’m talking about is blogs that have too many elements on the page. The text is either too small or it’s crammed into a narrow column. On top of that, thanks to the number of ads and scripts and images and the like, those blogs are slow to load even on a fast internet connection.

All of that does nothing for readers. I’d argue that it does little or nothing for the bloggers and their blogs, too.

Instead of subjecting your readers to an over abundance of design (or what you think is good design), why not go minimal with your blog instead?

Minimal?

By that, I mean a blog that’s simple and unadorned. A blog that uses a simple theme, has few (if any) images. A blog that minimizes or eliminates scripts, videos that play automatically, ads, annoying overlays and popups and pop unders. A blog that loads quickly, regardless of how fast or slow your connection is. A blog that looks good and is readable on a computer, a phone, or a tablet.

A minimal blog is one that puts its readers and what they’re reading first. It’s a blog that gives its readers what they need and want. It’s a blog that keeps things simple but does do in a graceful or elegant way.

To me, a minimal blog has easy-to-access navigation. It uses a clear, readable font and has a single column layout. Some examples of that kind of blog include:

All of those elements I described above ensure that the blog loads quickly (especially on tablets and smartphones). They ensure that the writing is front and centre.

I’m sure that a minimal blog might not be for everyone. It is a viable option for many of us who write online, though. And a minimal blog is an excellent way to make what’s a cluttered World Wide Web a little more usable and friendly to our readers.

Thoughts? Let's start a conversation on Twitter.