BEFORE YOU HIT
TAYLOR BRADFORD - @pnkheelspnktrk Taylor Bradford www.bossgirlcreative.com
Blogging isn't easy. There is always something new to learn. It doesn’t help that it’s always in constant motion either. What with the various social media platforms changing every time you turn around. As bloggers, we work really hard to get our posts ready for publish. Whether we are creating recipes or crafts, styling outfits, or curating great information, we work really hard right up until we hit publish. Before you let the world see that hard work, make you’ve dotted your i’s and crossed your t’s! Check out these 11 Things that you need to double check prior to publishing your post.
ONE: Did you proof-read your post? Go back in and double check that everything is spelled correctly and that you are using the write words instead of the wrong ones. See what I did there??
TWO: Do you have a call to action at the end of your post? This can come in many different forms such as a question to your readers, a follow button of some kind, or a subscription box. Tell your readers something to do at the end of your post. Give them a call to action. Don’t just let them leave without telling them something to do.
THREE: Have you tested your links? If you have links in your post, I highly recommend that you test them all.
FOUR: Do you have a Pinnable Image? Make sure you have something that people can pin from your post! Vertical images always do better on Pinterest, so make sure your first image is a vertical one! (Side Note: Horizontal Images do better on Facebook, so make sure you include one of those too and select it as your featured image. This will be the image Facebook pulls automatically.)
FIVE: Do your photos have actual titles and ALT Text? Make sure your photos don't say IMG00055. Google reads Image code and let me tell you...no one is searching for IMG00055. So make sure you change your photo file name. Also, get in that ALT Text. The Pinterest "Pin-It" button pulls your ALT text before it pulls your picture file name. Tell a story with your Image ALT Text. Think of it this way: tell your best friend about your post in the ALT Text.
SIX: Is your Post Title & Post SEO-friendly? What is the theme of your post? What keyword or keyword phrase can be used to target your post in a Google Search? If you aren’t sure what keyword or keyword phrase to use, head over to Google and start typing in the overall theme and see what starts to autopopulate. You can also do this same thing in the Pinterest Search Bar. Once you’ve figured out a keyword or keyword phrase to target, make sure it appears in your post title, your post URL and within the body of your post at least 2-3 times.
SEVEN: Is your post sponsored in anyway? If it is, make sure you disclose that fact to your readers. Your disclosure must be clear, concise and conspicuous. It cannot be hidden and it cannot be at the very end of your post. At the very least, your disclosure MUST be before your first outbound sponsored link (or affiliate link). I HIGHLY recommend that you disclose at the very beginning of your post. And if your post is super wordy, disclose again at the end. You might be thinking that a disclosure at the beginning of your post will hurt your SEO, but it won’t. So make sure it’s in there. (Take a listen to my podcast episode about the FTC & disclosures here.)
EIGHT: Do you have any Internal Links to yourself? Link to yourself when you can. Have a similar post, share it and then go back to that particular post and add a link to your new post. Self-promote your previous posts as often as you can within your own posts. At the end of your post, create a “YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE” gallery and add in 3-4 additional posts that are similar to what you just finished telling them about.
NINE: Add relevant Affiliate links. If you have a craft post, add affiliate links to the tools you were using. If you write a book review, add an affiliate link to the book. If you do use affiliate links, make sure you “NO FOLLOW” those links. NOTE: Remember to disclose that your post has affiliate links. Your disclosure must appear before the first outbound affiliate link. I recommend you place your disclosure at the top of your post.
TEN: Do your outbound links have the "open in a new window" code attached to them? If you include links that lead outside of your blog, make those links open in a new window. Add this code at the end of your link: target="_blank" Here's an example: Pink Heels Pink Truck
ELEVEN: Have you “No-Followed” your Sponsored or Affiliate Links? According to Google Webmaster Policies, all links that you were either paid to include or compensated to include (product/freebies/trips) in your post, need to have a “NO FOLLOW” code added to them. Links that you have a bias to should also have the “NO FOLLOW” code added to them. This code tells Google that the link is not an organic link. An organic link would be a link that you would include that you didn’t get paid to include. Did you pick up a new mascara at Target recently that you want to share with your readers? If you write a post about the mascara, you wouldn’t “NO FOLLOW” the link (unless you used an affiliate link) because Target (or the Mascara brand) didn’t give you the mascara or pay you to talk about the mascara. You purchased it yourself. It looks like this in your Text Editor (not the visual side) Boss Girl Creative