Can Visitors See You In the Sidebar? — Feedback Friday

sidebar imageAs a blogger, the first impression you make on a visitor plays a big roll in how effective you build a following.

You don’t necessarily have to make a good impression … you just need to make some kind of impression that sticks with your visitor.

To do this, you need to spend time crafting everything the visitor experiences on your blog. In film, they call this “mise en scene” … it represents the mechanics of everything on screen working together to entertain you with the story, including everything from the direction, writing, acting, lighting, special effects, and more. You need to achieve your own mise en scene with your blog when crafting your first impression.

We’ve already explored what visitors learn in just 10 seconds on your blog, which covered what a visitors looks for from a blog and how they’re able to connect with a blogger, but today I’d like to look at blogs making use of this type of visual supplement.

Personal Image

The Personal Image in the Sidebar

I’ve always been hesitant to include an image in the sidebar that you’d usually find in the about page, because of the value of that space in the sidebar. As I thought about it though, I realized that including an image upfront where people will see it no matter the page they land on when first visiting would actually increase the first impression as it creates a more human element to the blog.

The Standard theme by 8bit makes this incredibly easy (see the screenshot), so I decided to install the theme and give it a whirl over at CreativeBlogger.

This certainly isn’t necessary, but I’m interested to see what happens to the engagement around that blog in light of the change.

Is Your Personal Image Making An Impression?

Let’s take a look at the images other bloggers are using in their sidebar and explore whether or not they’re making a substantial impression. While including an image will help you stand out from the phantom-style blogs, there’s still a chance the image isn’t helping your blog. Find out what an objective visitor thinks about your image by posting the url to your blog below. I’ll take a look and let you know.

While we’re at it, let me know what kind of impression mine makes on you :)

Chris Rice is an SEO with Sachs Marketing Group. He writes about WordPress themes, plugins, and services for entrepreneurial bloggers at CreativeBlogger. Get more from him on Twitter and LinkedIn.


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