One thing that I have been noticing lately is that bloggers are adding every widget under the sun to their blog. There is content, and there is advertising, other than that, you shouldn’t be mucking up your blog.
Some Things To Avoid
Stat Trackers that Require an Image. There are so many web statistic trackers now that you can avoid the ones that require an image back to their service. Things like ExtremeTracking aren’t as featured as some of their competitors anyways. I like Google Analytics, as well as AWStats to watch over how my blogs are doing.
Bonus: Of course there is Feedburner to track how my RSS feed is doing, which I highly recommend for all bloggers.
Separate Links For Each RSS Service. I don’t mind people putting a single RSS badge on their blogs, but when you add a small graphic for every RSS reader service. That gets to be a little ridiculous, and it can push other more important things from their deserved spot on your blog.
Hundreds of Categories. Not only does having more than a dozen or two categories listed on your front page look cluttered, but it also makes sure new readers won’t be able to find or focus on your best content. If you are going to make a crazy number of categories, find a way to only display the top dozen in your sidebar, and create a categories or tags page for the rest.
More than Three Advertising Programs. Do you really need to have every piece of screen above the fold be advertisements? It seems this has only gotten worse since Google AdSense allowed competing ads to be put on the same page.
I know you want to monetize your content, but I will never come back to your blog, no matter how great the content is, and I know many others would agree with me on this.
Every couple of months, take a look at your blog, and decide if there is anything you can remove. Simplifying things will keep your site focused and your readers will keep coming back.