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Using graphics in conjunction with your blog pages will make an immensely more appealing presentation to your reader. As they are attracted to the look of your page, they will be inclined to stay longer. Time on your pages will increase. Bounce rates will decline.
You don't need to be a professional graphic designer to handle the basics of graphics professionally. This course is designed to help you stop and look at things that are simple enough to do that will have great advantage for you.
The course is 10 modules long. The modules average between 20-30 minutes each. Because they are recorded, you can watch them any hour of the day or night. You can replay any of the scenes if you need to see something "one more time." You can even download them in mp4 video podcast form to watch on your mobile, iPod, or tablet when you are 'waiting for an appointment' or have some other moments of 'down time.'
Take a look at the wide range of topics that you will be able to become more proficient at:
(8 minutes) Let's spend a few minutes browsing the blogs of others to see how they are using graphics. We will get some ideas of things we like. We'll have a list of things to take away and be able to develop on in this course.
(17 minutes) The foundation element of a graphic is a pixel or a tiny little dot of color. A whole bunch of these tiny little dots create our graphics! Why is resolution critical to understand? Page load times are involved! Do graphics wrong and there is a worsened user experience. Google also takes note.
(14 minutes) For most persons, JPG is the ONLY file type there is! You will learn why this is wrong. In web design, there are THREE main file types that you should give consideration to. If you choose the wrong file type, your images will not look as good as they could. Learn also why peanut butter and graphics go good together! :)
(26 minutes) Perhaps you've been inserting photos into your blog posts but the layout and arrangement of thing seems a bit awkward and not as interesting as you'd like. Picnik is a free web based photo app that will help us create composite graphics. We can put multiple photos together along with effects like drop shadows and overlaid caption text.
(22 minutes) Now that we have some graphics to put into our blog posts, how do we do that? When you insert graphics, there are a couple of easily overlooked image properties that improves the user experience AND aids in your SEO endeavors. Graphics do not need to be full width across the page. In fact, by floating your graphic you can wrap the text around (as well as avoiding a very common mistake when you do this!)
(23 minutes) Composite graphics add a whole new level of professionalism to the look of your posts. The free photo app Picasa has a collage tool that is the focus of this module. .You will get to see firsthand how easy it is to use and how great a result that you can have by doing so.
(37 minutes) Besides graphics inside a blog post, there are graphics as part of our page design and overall presentation. A banner (header graphic) is the very first thing somebody sees when they land on your blog post. What sort of impression does it give? The background of our pages is also something we can edit. Let's add some color!
(56 minutes) The background of our pages can also be a graphic. How can we find a good pattern graphic? What if we have a good photo that could make a good background? How do we avoid two very common mistakes when using photos? The signature (footer) is something we need to give attention to. If a person finds our post on google, likes our article... what are we doing to lead them to stay with us? Graphics can effectively be used in our signatures to draw their eye there. Social buttons are one other means we have to keep their interest. Finally, what about YOUR profile? Is it a "wall of words?" It is for most, let's show you how you can stand out from the crowd!
(42 minutes) When you first start blogging, you might not know how to find graphics that you can use in your posts. Let's look at the resources that we have in this regard. Some of the sources for images are free, others are low cost. The best resource of all is your own library of images. If you don't have one, NOW is the best time to start. You will see how to tag your photos for quick finding later when you need them. Finally in this module, we look at how to create great looking call to action buttons such as "search for a home"
(30 minutes) Creating a custom graphic to give your page flair and draw interest can be simple and easy to do. In just a few minutes of time, you can create a graphic out of words that highlights a key thought from your post - ask a main question or highlight a key quote. Maybe it is part of a series and a simple word art logo might just be the thing to improve your introductory paragraph. Are you doing a market report, charts can be simple and if you do them right (and most don't) - it will look terrific!