Consistent design patterns are essential ingredients to having a successful blog and website defined by a well-written style guide.
I was discussing Wikipedia with some friends this past week and its style guide. We talk about the tension between creative freedom and consistency throughout your blog or website. Consistency refers to the writing style, formatting, layout, and organization of the website. I believe that one of the essential ingredients to having a successful blog is having consistency.
Wikipedia is dangerous for me. I can easily get lost on it all day and read article after article, it’s crazy how much time I can easily spend on that site. This is because I know behind each link there is going to be another wealth of knowledge laid out almost as exactly as I expect it to be. At first, this thought seems obvious, of course, you have to have consistency. But the question is, what rules or boundaries am I going to set in order to maintain consistency?
Defining A Design Patterns As A Team
I haven’t thought deeply about that and I am now, more and more. My friends and I then created a “style guide” for our collective blog. After everyone had posted their first blog, we immediately noticed that each person had a different understanding of what our blogs should look like. That discussion was really productive and it helped us iron out some of our kinks and get on the same page. I think in one way it’s easier to define that kind of constraint with a group than on your own. It can be hard to set limits for yourself but it’s necessary. Also, when you make your own rules it’s easier to break them because you aren’t accountable to anyone.
This is something I’m definitely going be deeply considering from now on when I write blog entries.
I couldn’t agree more, self-discipline is not an easy task but it is definitely necessary for success. It is like you say, every person has a different understanding or perspective. How did you notice that your group was able to harness these differences and create a more consistent blog?
Thank you for your comment Priscilla and that’s a great question. I think what helped was that at the beginning we figured out what our vision of the blog was and then once we knew what our roles were, we gave each person space and freedom to do what they wanted within our agree upon guidelines.