Posts Tagged ‘Getting Readers’
You have taken the plunge and signed up for a blog. You may have even written a few posts and started to immerse yourself into reading others. However every time you click on another blog to read you get SERIOUS blog envy. How does everyone get their blogs so pretty? What are all the different things on their sidebars? What does it all mean? Some bloggers have so much information on their blogs that it can get confusing for new bloggers.
Here is our quick break down on the essential things you need for your blog.
Social Media buttons…
See those little buttons that appear in different places on people’s blogs….they come in all shapes and sizes and could be icons or could be badges…either way these little guys are super important to your blog- it means that all the people who randomly find and love your blog can follow you on all your social media sites.
The main ones you will see are twitter, facebook, pinterest, instagram and google + and most blog platforms have social media buttons you can use, you can design some yourself (we will show you how soon!) or get a designer to design some for you. Most of the sites also have widgets you can use to add your social media to your site.
(image from www.thelifeandtimesoftheworkingmum.co.uk)
On the side of some sites you will see icons advertising other blogs and on a lot of blogs you will see something that says along the lines of ‘grab our badge’….these basically are little badges advertising your blog. If you have a grab badge on the side of your blog and your followers really love it, you may find that your little badge will start appearing on other people’s blogs. It is a great way of promoting your blog and getting traffic from other sites too so it is always worth adding a grab badge to your site. They are really easy to make, and we will show you how in a later post.
Subscribe by email…
You want people to read your blog….therefore it is important to have a subscribe by email box on your site. People can still subscribe by RSS (see our recent post) but if you put a subscribe by email box in it can give another option for potential subscribers. Blogger and WordPress have pre-made widgets which you can install which will help you do this.
About me/Contact me…
It is always important to have a page or section on your blog that explains a little about you. After all a lot of people want to know how your blog started, who you are and what you do. It doesn’t have to be an essay, just a little insight into your life. If you blog anonymously you can still have an about me section- just explain about you but keep your name and major details secret. If you would like your readers to get in touch with you or like the idea of PR’s being able to contact you it is also important to leave your email address….you can ask people to submit queries by a form (again blogger and wordpress have widgets for this) or just put your email address link on there.
Tag Cloud/Search box-
If someone lands on your blog and likes what they see then they may want to read more of your posts. By putting a tag or category cloud on there with an instant link to some of your most written about topics, it helps readers to find things that interest them. Try not to use too many tags as you don’t want a massive section, it is useful to categorise your most used topics. Likewise a search box means that someone can find posts via keywords that interest them, or if someone has read a great post and wants to find it again- this can help.
Recent or Popular Posts…
Obviously you want your readers to get a taste of what you are really about- therefore it is always useful to add a Popular post link on your sidebar, Blogger has a widget that will do this for you meaning that it will automatically load your posts that have had the most interaction or page views, but if you don’t have this option you can always add a link yourself. For my personal blog I use Joomla and so therefore I have a badge on my sidebar which says ‘Favourite posts’- in here I add in all my posts that I have written that I love or that have for whatever reason had the most page views.
Blogroll or Blogs I love…
Blogging is all about sharing the love and networking is one of the best ways of getting yourself new readers. If you like a blog and read it regularly why not add it to your sidebar via a badge? Or blogger has a blogroll widget meaning you can list all the blogs that you really like. Some blogs even have a separate page listing their favourites. It is important to promote other blogs as it means that you make friends and may even get recognition on theirs one day too.
Here is a blog roll example from Mum2babyinsomniac.
So there you have it- that is a quick overview of essential things to have on your blog. Obviously there are loads more things that you could put on there but for beginners this is the best place to start.