Saturday, December 20, 2014

Design Your Blog, As You Develop Your Audience

Similar to starting a blog and immediately focusing on making money, we sometimes see people who start a blog, and immediately start designing the template, with custom features.

A beautiful, shiny design is useless, if your readers don't like it. Different blogs will attract different reader populations, who will respond to different designs.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Static Pages Do Not Appear In Newsfeeds

We see occasional confusion, in Blogger Help Forum: Learn More About Blogger.
How do I let my readers subscribe to my pages?
A static page, by definition, does not produce newsfeed content. This is one original purpose for the static pages feature, in Blogger blogs.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Pages And Posts, Saved As Draft, Won't Be Visible

Some blog owners, when publishing a new page or post, really appreciate the "Preview" option in the page / post editor.

In some cases, some people may use "Preview" so instinctively, they may overlook the limitations. We see the confusion, occasionaly, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue.
Where is my page? There's no selection, under "Pages to show", even!
The blog owner does not realise that unpublished pages or posts won't be visible, outside the page / post editor, and the "Preview" window.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Confusion From Non Operable Dashboard "Restore" / "Review" Buttons

This week, we're seeing a few reports from anguished blog owners, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue.
My blog was deleted for spam, and I can't request review because the dashboard button doesn't work!
This blog owner is being hit by a double whammy - first, a spurious spam classification; and second, inability to request review of the blog, falsely accused, using the dashboard.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Don't Try To Number Dynamic Pages

One interesting question, which we see occasionally in Blogger Help Forum: Learn More About Blogger, would be about making the blog easier to read - if the blog were static.
How do I number the pages, in the blog?
This blog owner does not quite understand the concept of dynamic content.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

NeoWorx, And The Redirecting NeoCounter Gadgets

This week, we're seeing the anxious query, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue.
Is my blog for sale? I try to view my blog, and I see
This Domain Is for Sale
Have I lost my blog?
Fortunately, in most cases, the answer is "No, your blog is not for sale." - and "No, you have not lost your blog!".

Several months ago, NeoWorx, the publisher of popular gadgets like NeoCounter, closed up shop. Back end code for their gadgets, installed on thousands of blogs and websites, had been served from their private libraries. Having closed their domains, the gadgets stopped working.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Confusion From Blogs That Use Smart Links In Titles

Some blog owners like to publish blogs that use custom colours, in the titles. Carefully coordinated colours are important, in some blogs.

Both the blog title, and the individual post titles, in many blogs, are clickable link captions. The blog title links to the blog home page, and / or the post titles link to the individual post pages.

Some blog owners get confused, when they try to set the colour of the titles, to a custom colour - and see link colours (which vary according to status), instead of the selected custom colours.

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Mysterious StatCounter Log Proxy Address Entry

We're seeing the occasional evidence of concern, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue, from people who spend too much time examining their StatCounter logs.
Why do I see "62.210.181.15:3130", in my StatCounter logs, as a referring site - reported as unknown "pool IP proxy" - and showing full BlogSpot.com and other sites' content?
This sounds scary - but it's not.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Confusion From Comments And The CAPTCHA

This week, we're seeing complaints from quite a few angry blog owners, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue.
Why do I have to solve a CAPTCHA, to comment on my own blog?
and
Everybody sees a CAPTCHA - even if they are logged in to Blogger!
Previously, the CAPTCHA was visible only to those not logged in to Blogger, or to those wishing to comment, anonymously.

Spammers - Getting Others To Do Their Work

We've known of resourceful scammerspammers, for years.

One long known scam, popular with home / small business blog owners, has been to award a badge for a "Most Excellent Blog" - and encourage the badge recipient to award the badge to friends with "Most Excellent Blogs".

The recipients of the "award" would proudly display the badge on their blogs. The "Most Excellent Blog" badge, of course, contained a link back to the scammers blog.

Recently, a spammer in a foreign country hosted an "SEO Contest" for other blog owners, where everybody participating was again, encouraged to put the "SEO Contest" badge on his blog or website. Again, the badge lead back to the spammers website.

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Adding Label Search Pages To A Dynamic Template

We all know the limitations of the dynamic template - how you can't easily edit dynamic template HTML code, or add accessories quite as freely, with a blog published to a dynamic template.

At one time, you could link a dynamic and non dynamic view of the blog, and let your readers use the sidebar, and the many options there, in non dynamic view - and switch back to dynamic view, for the comments and posts. That ability was taken away, earlier this year.

Like Designer and Layout templates, you can add a Pages gadget - and index dynamic pages, like label searches - as you may have done with gadgets on static pages.

Monday, December 08, 2014

Use Common Sense, And Protect Your Blog

We see various questions about getting advice and non standard accessories / code, from blogs and websites advertised outside Blogger / Google control - generally in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue.
Why can't I see my blog? Every time I click pn "View blog", I get a face full of ads!
and
Where can I get accessories, gadgets, and templates for my blog??
and
How do I know what accessories, gadgets, and templates are safe, for my blog?
and
Why did Blogger lock my blog, as a malware host?
All of these folks are discussing the same issue - blog content security. Some are asking properly, before they cause their problems - but others are not.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Blogger Cannot Provide A Blog Spam Review Tool

Among the cases which involve the hopeful, in Blogger Help Forum: Learn More About Blogger, we see an occasional query about proactive spam review.
I am worried that my blog, like so many others, may be deleted by Blogger! Is there any tool or service, by which I can scan or analyze my blogspot blog, to see if it's breaking any of Google rules?
And the answer here, simply, has to be "No.".

For any such service or tool to be helpful, a positive review of a blog would have to be accompanied by a certification that the blog is free of any TOS violation. The blog would then be frozen, to prevent any further changes. How many blog owners would want their blog frozen, for eternity?