Since Blogger is one of the most popular blogging platforms on the Internet, second only to Wordpress, it stands to reason that there would be tremendous demand for free Blogger layouts. In fact, there's so much demand that there are now countless sources for free, well-designed layouts for your blog.
What are Free Blogger Layouts?
Blogger is the platform of choice for Google-oriented Bloggers. Google purchased the Blogger blogging platform in 2003, and since then the user base of the platform has grown tremendously. The Blogger platform can run on your own web server, or you can start your own free blog on the Blogspot.com domain. While there are advantages and disadvantages to hosting your own blog or starting one that's hosted elsewhere, in both cases you can take advantage of the many excellent free Blogger layouts that are available throughout the Internet.
Installing Blogger Layouts
Before you start surfing for your favorite Blogger layout, it's important that you understand how to install the layout on your blog. Luckily, Blogger is one of the easiest blogs to configure, so installing a new layout only takes a few very simple steps. In fact, it's so easy to install a new blog layout without interfering with existing posts, that if you want to you can test out several layouts before choosing the one that you want to stick with.
Log onto your Blogger account and select the "layout" menu item for your blog. In this view, you'll notice that the "Page Elements" tab displays the various components of the current blog layout. If you've never installed a layout, then this will be the default Blogger layout. However, if you've installed a template from off the Internet or one you've created yourself, you'll find that the post position, the header, the gadgets on the right, and the footer are all placed according to how they are defined in the layout HTML code.
Within the Layout tab, click on the "Edit HTML" menu option. Under the "Edit Template" header, you'll see a large text box filled with HTML code. That code is the HTML and CSS program that defines exactly what your blog is going to look like. Whenever you download a layout off the Internet, what you'll download is an XML or text file that you can cut and then simply paste into the textbox on this page. Once you click "Save Template," the changes are activated and your entire blog design will change. You can see what the process of editing a template looks like in the photo to the right.
Since editing the template can drastically change your blog design, before making any changes it's always best to make a backup of your existing layout. You can do this under the "Backup/Restore Template" under the "Edit HTML" tab. Click on the "Download Full Template" link and safe the file to a safe place on your hard drive. Once you've backed up your existing template, feel free to start searching the Internet for cool Blogger layouts and start testing them out on your blog!
Finding Free Blogger Layouts
Because of Blogger's enormous popularity, you can easily find a wide assortment of free Blogger templates online. The designs range from ones that look like the typical MySpace page, to other designs that are quite stunning and professionally done. Make sure to set aside enough time to carefully sift through the many free designs that are available so that you can find the design that fits the tone and style that you want for your blog.
- Free Templates Blog: This website was created specifically for Blogspot Bloggers. They include both simple and plain designs, as well as more complex and intricate layouts.
- Gooyabi Templates: This is one of the best free Blogger layout websites on the Internet, with templates under categories such as music, religion, sports, and much more.
- Theme Xposed: At this website, you'll find one of the most unique and eclectic mix of Blogger layouts anywhere.
Blogger continues to grow as a popular blogging platform, and more web designers are producing high quality Blogger templates for those users. With the volume of choices that you have when it comes to the various free layout designs that are available, the only dilemma you'll face isn't whether you can find good layouts, but whether you can avoid spending too much time on the web sifting through so many excellent designs.