Happy Thursday! Comin’ at ya a little later than usual, but after spending some time lately making a few improvements to my own blog, I thought I’d share some tips for improving YOUR blog.
Coming from someone who works with influencers every single day, and spends 8+ hours a day looking at blogs and sponsored content, recruiting for campaigns, and staying up to date on the latest blogger trends, I’ve got a mental list of things I tend to look for. When you first come to a blog, first impressions are everything! Here’s my list of things that, according to me, can make or break that first impression. These things are easy to fix, but make a huge difference in the long run. Put a little love and TLC into your blog, and I think you’ll reap the benefits!
Improve Your Blog Right Now With These Tips:
- Update your About page to better reflect right now – For a lot of bloggers, their About page sits stagnant, and is sometimes forgotten about. If you haven’t updated it in a year, or even 6 months, give it a face lift! Update your photos on the page, and update the content. You want to make sure your About page tells people exactly what you’re blogging about most often. If your About page says you’re a foodie but you rarely post a recipe, maybe your blog actually fits in another niche a little better. Think about sponsored campaigns you might apply for – your About page is your cover letter! I recently updated mine to better reflect what I blog about, and to explain a little more behind the name of my blog.
- De-clutter, simplify, and reorganize your main menu – Your main menu is one of the first things people look at, other than your About page, to see what you’re about! Your menu should be like a quick, overarching view of the bulk of your content. It should also be easy for your readers to understand and navigate. Take a few minutes to reassess if your menu is still representative of the current state of your blog! Also, make sure your contact info is easy to find.
- Add a search bar, or move it somewhere more obvious – This is something that you may not think about, but if you apply to a lot of sponsored campaigns, companies might use your search bar as part of their vetting process. It’s an easy way to search someone’s blog for competitors, or similar content.
- Add pinnable images to old content – While Pinterest may not be as big of a traffic source as it used to be, it’s still important to make sure your content contains images that readers can pin. Typically, this should be your “hero” image, and something that is eye catching and properly promotes the post. If you have older recipes or reviews or special content you want to try and drive more traffic to, try going back and adding some solid pinnable images. Then, get to pinning/scheduling!
- Update your images using higher quality photography – This is HUGE, and might be a bigger undertaking than just something you can do quickly, but it’s something you need to think about with each blog post. Improving the photography on your blog will make an enormous impact on the overall feel and perceived quality of your blog. When looking for influencers, companies want to be able to trust that you can capture their product in beautiful photos, and not just on your iphone. While every single post doesn’t need high quality photography, sponsored posts, and posts that you are essentially using as your “portfolio” need to be brag worthy. Take a few minutes and make a list of old posts you could update with stellar photography, or make a note to include better images moving forward.
- Make sure your posts have nice featured images – Depending on how your blog is laid out, you most likely have to assign a “featured” image. This image is usually either visible on the homepage of your blog, or it may be the image that is attached to your blog post when shared out across social media. Your featured image will sometimes decide whether or not someone clicks through to read a certain blog post. It’s also sometimes what will auto-populate as the “pin” for Pinterest. Spend a little time making sure you’ve assigned these, if applicable to your theme!
- Minimize ad pop-ups and other annoying things – This is one of the biggest turn offs when looking at blogs. If I have to X out of 5 different windows before I can even see your blog post, I’m instantly annoyed and might leave altogether. Think about user experience – what do YOU want to see when you first land on a blog? You want it to be as easy as possible for people to view your content. While ads are essential to bloggers’ income, there are definite right and wrong ways to utilize them.
- SEO the crap out of your favorite posts – With so much competition in the blog world these days, you really, really need to be friends with Google. Go back into your favorite posts, or the ones you hope will be found, and update your alt text, title tags, meta descriptions, URLs if it won’t break a bunch of your links, reorganize your content with H123’s, etc.
Hopefully this gives you a few things to think about! The world of blogging is anything but easy these days, but with the right knowledge I really think there’s a slice of the pie for everyone!
Be sure to check out my Blogging Tips & Tricks page for more info!