If you are finding that a lot of SPAM comments are making their way onto your blog, don’t be too rash and suddenly close all comments. First look at options, including plugins like Akismet and others. And remember, yes, a lot will be dropped into your SPAM folder, but don’t worry about those. Marking them as SPAM often helps the plugins work better. If you are finding good comments dropping in your SPAM, it might be time to revisit your settings. You might consider moderating them as we have done recently on our own blog. Lastly, don’t close comments just because some big blogger has done it … it’s never good to just blindly follow the crowd. In any case, making your blog a one-way broadcast channel should be the last measure.
2. Your Blog Archive Page
If your homepage on your blog is the blog archive page, and is just a list of your recent posts, don’t do the full posts for 2 reasons.
- It makes the page too long and difficult to scan.
- People will not leave a comment because they will still need to click through to the full post in order to leave one.
And if it’s not your homepage, and an inside blog page, still consider this tip.
3. Social Sharing and Connecting
Sometimes new bloggers to WordPress get a bit confused over social media connect buttons and social media share buttons. If you are just starting, or if you work with a lot of beginners, here are the points that are seldom missed.
- Those buttons that readers click on to follow you. Before adding those buttons to your header, sidebar or footer widgets, think first. Are you active on each platform that you are adding? For example, if someone clicks on the Twitter icon, will they find your last tweet was 4 months ago? If so, likely they won’t want to follow an inactive account. Don’t add them just because they are shiny and look cool.
- Those buttons people click on to share your content. I believe it’s just the opposite here. It doesn’t matter if you are on Facebook or not, if someone want to share your post with their FB community, make it easy for them.
4. Storytelling Is Not For Everyone
Have you been told that telling a story in your posts will increase readership and discussion? If so, be careful. Storytelling is not new, it’s been around since the beginning of time. And it will really depend on your blog and if it works. If someone comes to your blog for “how-to’s” will a story add to the content or distract? Also, you don’t need to tell a story in every post. In the end, make sure that storytelling work for you—your content and your readers. See our other posts on storytelling.
5. Post Categories and Featured Images with Your Theme
Is your post set for your theme functions? This is a common thing to overlook. Your theme may pull in recent posts to a part of your homepage by category. So did you check that category? Or maybe your theme only shows thumbnails by inserting an image into the featured image option. Did you do that? Take the time to learn how your theme displays both content and images.
6. Repetitive Bios
If you have a bio in your blog’s sidebar but find it’s a redundant to have it show up on your about page, consider using a plugin that will let you create custom sidebars. If you are a Genesis user, try Simple Sidebars. If you are a WooTheme user, WooSidebars. Also, there are a few more: Content Aware Sidebars, Display Widgets, and if you use Jetpack, check out the Widget Visibility module.
7. Hiding, Showing and Updating Dates
If you have chosen to not show your dates on your posts, you may want to rethink this. Even when you think the content is not time-driven, there could be one small fact within the post that is outdated and would lead the reader to the wrong information. This is especially true with any posts written about technology. Also consider the dates when updating your posts. There are pros and cons to how this is done.
8. Scheduling Your Posts
When scheduling posts while you are on vacation or an extended time away, consider this. You need to be careful that your posts don’t entice readers to comment by asking questions at the end, since it may be awhile before you can recognize their comment. There are other things to think about as well when you are automating shares.
9. Generating Leads
A blog is a great way to generate business leads by moving your readers into your sales funnel. Readers will be more likely to come to you when they need something because you have already developed their trust by giving away all that free stuff (content) on your blog. So, as they begin to see that you can solve some of their problems, some of them will become customers and clients. But creating effective leads takes time and testing. So make sure you understand what you are doing before we take that dive.
10. Expanding Your Content
If you write shorter posts a lot, you may want to revisit them. You may find that you have some new post ideas floating around on your blog already. Find a way you can add to create a new post that is meatier, richer and more helpful. There are tons of ways to repurposing your content. Discover what works best with your blog and readers.