Blogging Tip: Search Feature
This post is primarily for bloggers, but this can apply to authors, too, because they usually have their own websites and blogs as well.
I'm going to get to the point immediately: PLEASE PUT A SEARCH FEATURE ON YOUR WEBSITE or BLOG.
Why? Because the next question will be a mute point and make everyone's life easier.
Is Your Blog Easy To Navigate?
That question is SO relative, it's insane. Everyone is used to whatever websites they visit and if something isn't in the same place as the websites THEY visit, they're going to get frustrated and leave. So, you can do all the research you want to on what's commonly found on websites similar to yours–and you'd do yourself some service (and your visitors) if you did such research–but someone will inevitably have a hard time finding something on your website.
So what do you do as a fail safe for any visitor?
Include a SEARCH feature for your site. On WordPress, it should just be an easy drag-and-drop widget you can load into your sidebar. On Blogger, it's in the design section. Admittedly, I have one on this blog but it doesn't seem to be working as of late. Not sure why. I'll have to investigate, but it sounds like a Blogger.com issue, not an Arial issue.
As an author, when I've been featured on someone's blog – either a review, a cover reveal or a book tour – it is so difficult to refer people to the blog where I've been featured if all I have is the main address. Since I know many bloggers publish a lot of posts in one day, I can't expect them to put my post at the top where it's easy to find. And if I don't get the permalink for the feature, I have to go to the website and search for it…if there is a search feature. If I don't have a search feature, it's a lot more work on my end to go to Google and HOPE it shows up on the search.