As bloggers, our piece of internet real estate is important to us. We cultivate and nourish it, we spruce things up, and give it our all.
As 2014 comes to a close, it’s time to do a bit of housekeeping and prepare our blogs for 2015.
1. Editorial Planning
Where would you like to take your blog in 2015? According to your stats, what were the most successful topics in 2014? If you haven’t answered these questions, you should? In addition to having a platform to share your thoughts and experiences, it, your blog is also a place to connect with your readers.
Have you defined your niche? Do you want to?
If you haven’t, I think you should.
From my experiences, unless you’re an “old school” veteran blogger with many years under your belt, the catch all blog is hard to gain traction in the age of growing niche bloggers. I’m definitely not saying through your thoughts to the wind and succumb to blogging pressures, but organizing your blog’s focus can hone a great audience. Even personal blogger, or the new title, lifestyle bloggers, have guiding topics. For now, my guiding topics are my expat adventures and travel.
So, if you haven’t already, answer the aforementioned questions in order to prepare your blog for 2015.
2. Cleaning up Social Media
Blogging and social media are husband and wife. They’re the perfect combination of beans & rice if used properly.
Many novice bloggers often ask, “How can I use social media to increase engagement on my blog?”
Short answer, clean up social media.
In order to prepare your blog for 2015, comb through your social media accounts. Use your analytics to determine which accounts are most productive to your brand then downside.
For me, Pinterest, drives the wealth of traffic to my blog with this being my most popular pin. It’s a pin about my grocery shopping habits, something that I obviously need to chat more about. If Pinterest is a heavy hitter for your blog, take a look at the popular pins to see what your readers like. Thereafter, cruise through your boards and delete pins that no longer represent your brand and interests. Established clear, concise boards for pinning.
Facebook is my 2nd highest blog driver. It’s so/so on engagement. However, I conclude because I am a part of many blog communities and participate in engagement threads as the reason behind this. If you’re like me, consider the groups that are most beneficial and productive; eliminate the others. One of the biggest barriers to blogging success are distractions.
3. Appearance and Presentation
Your branding and blog are a representations of you. When readers come to your blog, they don’t want to use Google Maps to find the information that they’re looking for. They are coming to get the information and/or services that you provide. Make this easy for them, please.
If you have a gazillion buttons in your side panel, remove them. Do you have advertisements in your side panel that are not a source of income, if so, remove them. Those cute little buttons from your blogging communities and friends show allegiance but they’re so distracting. Also, they cause your blog to load slower. For these, if you don’t want to remove them, consider a separate page. As far as advertisement, if they aren’t a source of income, remove them.
Lastly, when was the last time that you’ve updated your design? How about your color scheme? Are your brand items consistent? Are your readers able to recognize you on various social media accounts through your branding? If you’ve answered no to any of these questions, it’s time to update your brand. Become consisted across social media. Consistent branding gives you a professional appearance and content authority.
As an extension of Poised in Print, I’ve developed Reginia Cordell Designs. We’re branding as A Modern Design Experience. Starting January 2015, let us help you prepare your blog for 2015. To inquire about early bird specials, do send a smoke signal to email@example.com
How far are you along the blogging continuum?
Share your 2015 blogging goals with me.