If you read my blog post last week, you’ll know that I’m about to hit my one year mark of blogging. Which kind of seems insane that I’ve been doing it for almost a whole year. For the next couple of weeks I’m going to be sharing what I’ve learned so far. Today it is all about the things I do before I hit publish.
It’s taken me quite a lot of time to narrow down the top 5 things I do before I publish each of my blog posts. I do these things every single time I write a new post. I started implementing these things since November of 2017 and I’ve been able to see an increase in traffic, a larger audience reach and a more engaging audience as well.
Also, I did not include a “proof read your content” tip because it is something that everyone should already be doing! Always double check your grammar!
Did you miss my first Blogging 101? Don’t worry! Read it here!
5 Things to Do Before You Hit Publish
1. Hit Preview!
This one may seem obvious, but it is so essential! I wanted to include it because of how much a difference it can make. The theme I use for my website shows only a portion of my featured image. This means that when I preview the post, I can see if it looks weird or if needs to be moved over a bit.
Using preview has also allowed me to make sure that the post is exactly how I want readers to see it. With the WordPress Business plan, I don’t see my post exactly how it will look to others as I’m typing it. Under preview, I’m able to see if a header needs to be larger or a different color. I tend to do this every couple paragraphs so I can keep up with any changes that need to be made.
2. Create Pinterest Graphics
I like to do this before I publish my posts that way I can include a “Pinterest-able” image in the post. It also tends to be the image that most people save as well. I tend to pin more posts that have words so when I go back to my boards later, I know exactly what the article or post is about.
I typically create my pinterest graphics with Canva or Adobe Photoshop. It typically depends on the type of image I’m trying to create. Canva is typically much quicker to use if I don’t have a ton of time. Canva is also more user friendly if Photoshop seems too intense for you!
Pinterest has recently said that the optimal size for a Pinterest Graphic is 2:3, or 600 px wide x 900 px tall. Anything longer will end up getting cropped and readers will need to click on it for the whole image to be seen. I typically click the “Pinterest” template on Canva or manually use 600×900 on Photoshop. You can see that the image I used has a relatively basic background. This allows for my text to really pop and is the main focus of the image.
3. Make an SEO-Worthy Post
Ever since I got the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress, I have been able to see an increase in traffic. SEO is Search Engine Optimization. I could do a completely separate post all about SEO because it is such an in depth topic. Here is a link all about using the Yoast SEO plugin. I’ll just brief you on some main points.
I make sure that all of my images have the correct caption and “alt-text”. This means when someone pins your image, the description will be whatever you want it to be! With the Yoast SEO plugin, you can include a keyword that is primarily what the post is about. For instance, if I’m writing about blogging, my keyword would be “blogging”. I can then see if my keyword is used enough throughout the entire post. It will also make sure your paragraphs aren’t too long, that you aren’t writing in a passive voice and that your sentences are short enough and easy to read!
Basically this plugin is a terrific way to ensure that you are doing everything you should in terms of SEO. This plugin has saved me a ton of time and helped my blog reach a much larger audience
4. Double Check Your Links
For some weird reason, links don’t always work! You make be thinking you are linking a related blog post, but you are actually linking to something else! I like to click on all my links/double check them before I publish to make sure they are sending my readers where I want them to end up!
I also like to add related links where it is relative. It can help your reader stay on your website for a longer amount of time too. I will include another fashion post if I’m writing about fashion. Make sure these work too! This can be called “deep linking” and it can help your SEO too! You can call attention to older posts and lower your bounce rate!
5. Pay attention to Readers
One of the biggest parts of blogging is the readers! Your blog is for you and your readers! Any way to generate income from it and engagement is from your audience! Don’t forget to Call To Action. This means asking questions, asking them to share posts, or to subscribe to your emails. Anything that is asking your readers to do something. This can help for a more engaged audience and also it helps you reach an even larger audience!
I typically post my Call to Action at the end of my blog posts. I’ve been able to see more comments and a higher engagement when I do that. You could ask which tip they thought was most helpful, or if they think a certain trend is fun or not.
I hope these tips will help your next blog post! Do you do any of these things already? Do you have any extra to share? Leave a comment down below!
Missed my last post? Check it out here!