Last week I announced the Hack WordPress anniversary contest, and with the announcement, also mentioned a redesign of Hack WordPress. The thing that I think made this redesign unique and interesting is that it was built upon the old design, with only some stylesheet changes, different images, and a bunch of added functionality.
So, why did I decide to go with a redesign instead of a completely custom new design? In a recent post over at Pro Blog Design I think Michael pretty much summed it up best when he explained how to redesign and still win.
When a reader visits a blog day after day, they get used to it. They know how the home page is going to look, they know what they will find in the sidebar and they know what decorations to expect around their comments.
The familiarity does wonders in helping them get around your site quickly, but there are no surprises for them. There’s none of the spark and interest you get when you come across a great looking new site.
It only takes one change to break the monotonous familiarity.
Though Michael’s example is focusing on changing one part of your blog (only the sidebar, header section, comment section, etc.), I think the general idea holds true to our situation. At some point your blogs growth stalls, and sometimes changes need to take place in order to spark interest and hopefully see that growth continue.
If you find that your blog has stalled a little bit, why not make a change to your design (no matter how small)? Even something as simple as redoing your logo, revamping your website’s header section, or making some changes to the sidebar can go a long way.