This weekend I had to answer some questions for an interview by Carlo Selorio and one of them made me think. Not that it was unusual but it was operating outside of the realm of conscious decisions and logical choices…
“What inspires you?”
… or something to that effect. As a blogger sometimes I find inspirations in most unusual locations and today I want to run a parallel inspired by my family’s dining out experience this weekend. One question got stuck in my mind …
Is My Blog Ready For “Fine Dining” Or Will It Become “Fast Food Joint”
Every visit to a restaurant just like a visit to a blog can be split into several major experience sections. How well it will fair at each will define the complete satisfaction or disappointment of the visitor.
Perhaps The Most Important part of of the visit as it greatly defines if customer will decide to stay and order or turn around and walk away.
I know that personally for me first impression caries huge weight and I have walked away from a restaurant on more then one occasion just because I didn’t like what I have seen. Lucky us we are not limited in choices and striving capitalism presents us with many options to spend our money.
And my first impression is not limited to just how clean the place is but how it’s laid out, does it provide a family friendly booth and clearly separates smoking and non-smoking section or does it simply provide you with a table to sit at and gobble down your food.
- Your blog look and feel has just as big impact as factors I have mentioned above. How easy it is to navigate and locate information. Does it provide an easy access to content I expect to find or do I have to fight through multiple ads and awkward layout. Categorizing your content and presenting it as readily available to me, enhances its functional design that allows me to do what I came for in the first place – find information I need.
Menu Variety And Food Quality
Once I have made up my mind and decided that restaurant will get my money and I will provide them the pleasure of feeding me and my hungry family I begin to look at what they have to offer to fill my growling stomach.
Don’t take me wrong, if I got no choice I will gobble up the burger in McDonald’s but it will never be my first choice. Even though it fills the need of the moment it fails to deliver on just about every aspect outside of filling me up.
If I’m looking for a less expensive solution I would always try to locate the likes of Applebees or T.G.I. Friday to help me fight the hunger and yet provide with a nice atmosphere and decent food quality. I know that burger and fries give a comfort of familiar food but I do enjoy the unique menu items offered by each.
- Your Blog Content Quality and Uniqueness is what makes it different from everyone else. We don’t just share facts to fill the need of the moment as there are plenty of news sites already. We each provide our own vision and opinion on the topic and that specific uniqueness is what makes us desirable. Content alone has the power to attract and retain readers and separates us from main stream news media. We are by choice the low cost alternative to “McDonald’s” of the Web. They have their place but I make conscious decision NOT to be one of them!
Quality Of Service
While quality of food defines the skill of the chief it is the quality of delivery that defines the total experience. I think that job of the waiter is perhaps one of the most important in restaurant as they are “customer facing” factor that will either make the dinner enjoyable or irritating as hell no matter how good the food was.
Nothing pisses me off more then a waiter who brings me my drink and then disappears only to make entrance for quick drop off of the ordered food and then collect my money and expects a tip. I’m a good tipper but sorry – my tip is directly impacted by how satisfied I’m with the total experience. I personally think that a good waiter have the power to provide you with a great satisfaction from visit even if food quality was less then expected and it is a crucial moment that should never be overlooked.
- Blog Speed and Flow is what in my opinion serves as equivalent of a restaurant service and contributes to a total experience. How fast your pages load in browser, how it flows from section to section and provides seamless access to related information defines satisfaction. I don’t think I have visited a blog yet that had a great article and then at the end presented me with list of related posts and I failed to click one of them. By providing that flow and accessible relevancy not only do we help ourselves to increase readership but also better total experience to the visitor.
I don’t want to waste anymore of your valuable time here but to simply reestablish points above …
While the likes of McDonald’s and Burger King can fill your stomach – they provide very little in satisfaction, unless you take your kids to play in their “play pen” and it is a totally separate aspect, not touched upon here (clever marketing to infect the minds was ignored in this post) . Total dining experience defined by many aspects and not food alone determines it.
Designing your blog can be fairly simple and as long as it follows some vary basic guidelines it will provide the total experience that will reward you not only morally but also monetary if you decide to do so. Happy people are much likely to act on your recommendations then people annoyed by nuisances …
- Look and Feel
- Content Quality and Uniqueness
- Blog Speed and Flow
Get those right and you are well on your way to accomplishing your goals.