New Coat of Paint
I updated my main background to a light grey from the black and put a complimentary grey around my blog posts. I find that it really draws my eye in towards the content on the page without being so in your face. The black was depressing me a bit. You’ll also notice I made my banner brighter and added my social media links to the lower left of the image.
I also updated my social media banners and changed my profile picture to actually be a picture of myself. Hopefully, I found all the places I have an active profile!
Revamped Sidebar and a new Meet the Cast (About Me) Page
Be honest, my sidebar was kind of a mess. I liked a lot of the content, but it was just kind of sitting there. Not even I was interacting with it.
My first step was to install the Display Widget plugin. This gives me the flexibility to hide/show different widgets on different pages. So when you head over to a review page, you’ll see different widgets than on Center Stage.
I moved my social media icons to my header so I didn’t have to dedicate sidebar space to them. You’ll notice I limited the number of social media icons as well. Thanks to Ashley at Creative Whim for helping me out with the image map name.
I still have a blog roll, but I moved it over to my Meet the Cast page. The blogs I follow are connected to who I am as a blogger. The bloggers I feature provide great content and they are also social bloggers. They interact with me and I interact with them. They have helped shape who I am as a blogger. In addition to the blog roll, I added a list of recommended books that link back to GoodReads.
I also changed up my profile to be a bulleted list. I listed the six things that define me as a person at this point in time and provided a brief explanation. Overall, I love the way the page turned out.
New Email Newsletter…Fan Mail!
Thanks to Brittany at Book Bumblings for setting this out as a task. I signed up for a MailChimp account, migrated my WordPress users and Feedburner subscribers over and got some signup forms setup. You’ll notice a few pushes to the emails in the sidebar and in every post. In addition to using MailChimp, I’m using Optin Forms and SumoMe to insert the option to subscribe in various places on the site.
My favorite thing about the newsletter? The header banner I created.
Removed old plugins and widgets
I tried a few different plugins and widgets to manage my new mailing list, but decided I wasn’t a fan of them. So I uninstalled them and got them off the site.
*dusts off hands* So there you have it fans, that’s what I’ve done so far to freshen up thing around here. What do you think? Do you like it? Do you have any spring cleaning plans for your blog? What is the most favorite thing you’ve taught yourself to do related to your blog?