Monday, November 26, 2007

What To Do With Free Blog Template Code#

OK. You've found some free blog template code that you really like.

It displays well.

It works with your chosen blog platform.

What next?

That will depend on your particular blog platform.

Some blog platforms give you lots of flexibility in terms of the blog template code you can use. Others are fussier and will restrict you to a set of pre-designed templates.

Before your blog gets too popular, it's worth finding out what, if any, restrictions there are on changing your blog template.

That said, most blog platforms will allow you to change your blog template.

There are a number of things you need to consider when you do this:

* Does your new blog template include a visible link back to the designer?
* Are you required to keep that link on your page and visible as part of the license to use the blog template?
* Does the underlying code look neat?
* Is the code "commented" so that you or your web designer can make changes?
* Are you allowed to make changes to the blog template code? Or does it have to be used exactly as it is?
* Is it simple to change things like the background image and other images to make your theme more personal?
* Does the blog template code work in the major web browsers? At the very least, your blog should look near enough the same in Internet Explorer and Firefox.
* Does the blog template code load quickly? Or does it take forever to "render" (put itself into the correct place)?
* Are there any hidden images or other sneaky items included in the blog template code? You may need to get a HTML savvy friend to check this for you.
* Will using this blog template code limit your ability to change the look and feel of your blog in the future? For instance, are there are special elements in the code that affect your blog's navigation?

Once you're happy with the answers to all these questions, it's time to take the plunge and change your blog template.

But there's one thing to do before you install a new set of blog template code. It's important, but it's often missed:

Take a backup of your current blog template.

That way, if something goes wrong or doesn't work as expected, your blog can be put back to a working version quickly and easily.

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