In getting my daily doze of news around [tag-tec]blogosphere[/tag-tec] I have run more then once into posts that discuss one simple subject – Decluttering Your Blog. And while I agree with many statements I have certain reservation when it comes to the subject and more think about balance then purity.
And with many visible bloggers talking about it somehow I feel it might begin to spread like an infection and reduce certain social aspects of the blogs …
I’m not trying to say that poins taken in posts I’m about to mention lack validity behind them and while agree with some I want to shoot for a more balanced approach when working with my own blog.
Let me begin by sharing with you an article by Jason Kaneshiro Getting Back To Basics: Blog Decluttering, which I have discovered reading Lorelle’s blog. I think he states some valid points on optimizing the theme but in doing it he also mentions going to simpler graphics (there goes web 2.0 look). I do like his idea on CSS optimization but not sure if this small reduction in size justifies the simplicity of navigation and editing of the file …
I do agree that content should be the king on the blog and easily located. That is why I like the theme I currently use as it was designed for showcasing the content while still giving me ample space to integrate all the interactivity that comes with Web 2.0 and social networks and monetization options vital for my blog survival.
Removing Plugins Bloat
Plugins are great and really help us to enhance our blog functionality but most of them also add to our pages load speed. Not only do they create tons of extra queries to database but also impost their own stylesheets and as such increasing page weight. Just have a look at source code of your blog and discover how many extra stylesheets been imported into head section of your blog…
So how do you deal with it?
I have found an interesting article by Will Garcia on Gormful where he shares his vision of creating a minimalistic and yet very functional WordPress blog with SEO integrated as well as most valuable functionality retained. If minimalistic approach is something you are shooting for that article is worth your time.
… Or Shoot For Enhanced Functionality
I have to admit – I have checked and double-checked all the plugins that load external css on my blog and create extra queries and unable to get rid of any of them … I know that page load speed is important to my blog but functionality is JUST AS IMPORTANT!
To me my blog is not just the place to present my thoughts and share my experience but also a place for interaction with my readers. Hearing what you have to say and provide you with options to influence what content presented in my most popular posts is just as important as creating it. I don’t believe that functionality should suffer and instead I prefer to hope that WordPress development team will keep their promise and speed up the core while in mean time I’ll use caching and cleaning as I have described in my post Howto Design WordPress Blog To Survive The Digg.