The footer of your blog is one of the most important areas of your blog. Even though it is located on the bottom of your page, it still acts as a reason for why people should stay on your blog and maybe even subscribe to it. That is, if the user even makes it that far down the page.
Footers have been receiving a lot more attention over the last few years, and two man styles have been created as a result. A footer can be in two different sizes: large (often behemoth sized) or small (sometimes as small as a navigation bar in your header). It is questionable as to which is more valuable to your site, but I have some very convincing reasons why one is better than the other in any situation.
Large vs. Small Footers
How does a large footer compare to a small footer? How can a simple vertical strip of space compare to a multi-column, miniature homepage? We’ll see how the two types of footers can benefit your site, and which one benefits the most.
A large footer has the space for as much information as you would want. Large footers come in all different sizes, and the way you organize that content is completely limitless. We’ll see what a larger footer has to offer your blog below.
It looks beautiful
Holds more content…duh
Great SEO benefits
Eases content load in sidebar(s)
There are countless examples of gorgeous footers on the web that truly look stunning. The best part about this is you don’t even need to have advanced illustrations or ingenious typography to make a large footer look good. A little sense of organization is all it takes to really make a large footer look great and complement the other elements of your gorgeous blog.
The great thing about large footers is all of the space it creates for you to stuff it with content! Unlike smaller footers, you have room to add multiple columns, add beautiful images and throw in giant lists of links. Because you have so much room, you can be as creative as you want; make things as big as you want, or as small.
Search engines don’t miss out on the important information you stuff into your footer. Just because it’s at the end of your page doesn’t mean it has to be valueless.
Footers are actually important to your SEO because search engines do find value in the content you add to the very bottom of your page. So, if you can throw in some keywords your blog is trying to rank for, and links to some other pages (sitemaps work great here), then you will be taking advantage of a fat footer. Don’t spam of course, but the room a larger footer gives you makes it easier to add links to more content.
If a visitor of your site manages to scroll to the bottom of your page and see your footer, it’s important that you try and take advantage of that unusual occurrence and get them clicking on something!
A huge footer will catch the eye of many people who visit the bottom of your blog. It’s a lot easier to get people clicking around on links and possibly subscribing to your blog with a larger footer.
Sidebars are meant to have important information in them, but they can’t hold it all. The use of a large footer really eases the load in the sidebar, and weakens the competition for the readers interest between the content area and your sidebar.
Readers can miss out
Easy to clutter
Since a footer is at the bottom of the page, and the amount of people who actually scroll to the bottom of your site is often very few, you run the danger of having few people seeing the important content in your footer.
A large footer has the potential to hold a ton of information, but it is also easy to fill it with a lot of clutter. Lists are most common in these types of footers, and lists can become very lengthy and take a lot of vertical space. If you have 3 or 4 length lists sitting next to each other, it will look pretty cluttered and hard to read.
Easier to organize
Cuts down the amount of scrolling
Since you’re working with such a small area, it is much easier to organize. You won’t be working with long lists of links in a small footer, or worry about having multiple columns of text. So, adding content without worrying about creating clutter is what a small footer brings to the table here.
Big or small, a footer will still bring in some SEO benefits. You could argue that a small footer has more value to search engines as it holds less, but more important information than a fat footer which has information all over the place.
A large scrollbar is very unappealing to many people, and at least you’ll know that your small footer won’t be the cause of it. Large footers take up tons of space and really decrease the size of your vertical scrollbar.
Easier to miss
Holds much less
If there is a chance that a large footer can be missed, what do you think the chance of a small footer being missed? Like I said, it’s unlikely many people will even get to the bottom of your blog, so it’s important to try and do whatever you can to make whatever is at the bottom as appealing as possible.
Unfortunately for small footer users, they will miss out on the call-to-action that large footers provide for cases like this.
Because the idea of a small footer is to keep it small, you miss out on adding a lot of useful information in it. You are generally restricted to copyright text and a few links without making your footer seem massive, so you don’t want to add too much to your footer if you want to keep it small.
My Verdict: Large Footers
No questions asked, larger footers are the best kinds of footers to have. Because they add so much extra space to your blog, you can spread content out and lessen the load of information you stick into your sidebars. Large footers also give you the opportunity to catch a visitor right before they leave and get them viewing other pages of your blog, and maybe even subscribe. Large footers take this one by a landslide.
Tomorrow on Design Versus
I will be talking about a trend that has been exploding amongst the design community tomorrow: minimalism vs. compact design. I will be comparing the new design of Blogussion to my other blog, Asnio. Stick around, you will really enjoy this one.