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A blog template is something which can be used to manipulate the physical presentation of a blog, with settings which apply to every page on the blog so that bloggers can establish a single template, and then focus on content, instead of having to customize each and every single entry. Because blogging also involves complex activities like maintaining archives, creating dynamic pages, and so forth, blog templates automate these functions, reducing the risk of errors across the blog and allowing content creators to focus on blogging instead of building a website.
Most blogging programs come with default templates, and blog users can also access templates on various support websites, both free and for a charge. Templates may also be known as themes, and they can usually be edited from within the blog's dashboard, and via FTP on the blog's server, depending on the blogging service someone is using.
Using a blog template, a blogger can create a wide theme for the website, so that every page will have a uniform appearance, and so that features like menus for navigation will appear on every page. Bloggers can also tweak the template for specific pages. Templates are used to lay out the site, dictate the colors of the site, force specific fonts to display, and establish parameters for what should happen in various situations, ranging from a user landing on a bad link to someone running a search using the embedded search function in the blog.
It is possible to build a blog template from scratch, using the markup language specific to the blogging platform. Some bloggers enjoy doing this because they can create a custom template from the ground up this way, and they can ensure that their template will not be duplicated on another site. It's also possible to use a blog template generator, in which the blogger inputs basic parameters and receives a chunk of code which can be used as the basis for a template in return. Other bloggers like to use freely available templates, which they may use as-is or manipulate to suit their needs. Templates are very easy to customize and adapt to suit the needs of the blogger.
Blog templates are entirely separate from the content of the blog. When changes are made to the template, they alter the way in which the content is displayed, but they do not alter the content itself. Likewise, bloggers can change, adapt, and add to the content as much as they want without altering the template. When someone lands on a blog, both blog template and content are run through what is known as a template engine to create a display of the blog's contents in an aesthetically pleasing way.