This weekend, take a step back from writing and square away the little details that impact your blog’s “look and feel”. Let’s start with 7 little changes that can make a huge difference:
1. Professional blog header: Your blog’s header graphics should be clean and professionally designed. Headers that look like a 2nd graders art homework may be cute but leave the wrong impression with readers.
2. Big and bold headlines. Use large and simple to read headlines. For most blogs this means setting headlines fonts to at least 20pts. Use a font type that is readable from across the room. My current favorites are Helvetica Neue, Arial, and Georgia.
3. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot. Don’t display your retweet, Facebook, or LinkedIn count numbers if no one is sharing. Prominently displaying your zeroes is like an empty nightclub on Friday night. You should still offer the share buttons, just configure your plugin to only show the button and not the count. Of course, turn the count back on when you start getting consistent retweets.
4. Use two colors: Use two font colors on your blog: 1) a base color and 2) an action color. The base color is the default font color for all post text. The action color is for links and other items you want readers to notice and click. Using one color for action links makes them stand out and improves conversions. Using a rainbow of font colors confuses your readers and hurts your blog’s performance. (Hat tip to Derek Halpern for reminding me of this powerful fact)
5. Make blog and newsletter optin forms prominent: Move your blog update by email form to the top of your sidebar. Many people prefer to get updates in by email, make it easy for them to do so. Remember that anything that your readers have to scroll to see it less likely to get read or clicked. Put your most important items above the scroll point.
6. Eliminate clutter: Look for useless items that clutter up your blog’s presentation. Culprits include: junk drawer sidebars, offering dozens of social icons buttons, random photo gallery slider animations and poorly configured pop-ups. Get rid of them if they aren’t directly linked to your blog’s strategy.
7. Be careful with advertising: Ads are a double-edged sword. They can make you money but they can turn your blog into advertising circus. I’ve seen many excellent blogs transformed by banner ads into an odd menageries of irrelevant ads. For many bloggers, ads don’t pay enough to warrant scaring off readers.
Don’t love ‘em and leave ‘em. Over the last month, I’ve been building short email campaigns to give more tips and tools to my business blog and blog promotion special report buyers. These messages help me stay connected with my readers and let them know that their purchase will continue to deliver value for them. Consider doing the same with your online customers. In my case, this simple extra step has led to more testimonials and clients.
All of the major email service provides (i.e. Aweber, Mailchimp, Infusionsoft) can send a purchase triggered email series. A quick search on Google will also give you some excellent information on how to set up your own post-purchase series.
Proven Blog Promotion Ideas
I’ve created a special report that details how I drive over 20,000 visitors to Pushing Social every month. In the guide I specifically give you the inside scoop on three tactics that will get you new visitors for free. If you need traffic in a hurry then get this special report.
Have an awesome weekend!