Sunday Salon: blogging secrets revealed

sundaysalonI’ve been blogging now for more than a year but it still feels like I’m in the primary grade class in terms of what I know and understand about the art of blogging.

That began to change this week as I read through an early reviewers copy of The Blogger’s Survival Guide, courtesy of LibraryThing. It’s a how-to guide written by two women authors who are experienced bloggers using content from a site they established thesocialmediapanel.com.

Some of the content is fairly standard and even for someone as wet behind the ears as I am, it felt like fairly basic guidance about creating content, checking grammar etc. But then we got into the more technical and advanced stuff and some gems of info. Here are the gems I found.

5 Useful Blogging Tips

  1. Be careful about the size of images used or you’ll make the page slow to load which will irritate readers. Avoid pulling the picture into the page and then resizing. Get it to the size you want first
  2. Set up a blogging schedule. Work out how much time you have to spare each week and how to allocate it against the various tasks of writing posts, engaging in social media, search engine optimisation, promotions and (if this is relevant for you) how to use the site to generate income. Now these women clearly have about double the time I have available in an ordinary week to spend on blogging but there were still some great tips about  being more efficient with the time available.
  3. Understand search engine optimisation (SEO) extremely well if you want search engines to find you. First step is to discover some key word phrases relevant to your content – use google analytics to see how frequently people search using those terms.
  4. Try to keep your titles to max of 4 words and avoid commonly occurring words like in, we, I, me etc
  5. Follow the tips at GTmetrix.com to learn how to speed up the performance of your site. Remember that readers are impatient and if the page takes a long time to load, they’ll click away

WordPress Users Tips

My other gold mine find this week was a WordPress Tips blog that is packed with tutorials and detailed instructions on how to get your pages to look the way you want. I followed the guide on how to create tables so my list of reviews was easier to navigate (something I couldn’t figure out at all using WordPress’s own instructions). It took me some time to get used to writing code but I got there in the end and was delighted with the result. You can see the effect on one of my book review listings pages. Highly recommend you take a look at the WordPress Tips blog.

About BookerTalk

What do you need to know about me? 1. I'm from Wales which is one of the countries in the UK and must never be confused with England. 2. My life has always revolved around the written and spoken word. I worked as a journalist for nine years then in international corporate communications 3. My tastes in books are eclectic. I love realism and hate science fiction and science fantasy. 4. I am trying to broaden my reading horizons geographically by reading more books in translation

Posted on June 16, 2013, in Blogging, Sunday Salon and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Thanks for all the info about blogging! It was really interesting. I am looking to start blogging and didn’t really know where to start until reading your advice.

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    • happy to share what little I know – I was very much in the same camp as you when i started. i don’t claim to have that much understanding still but it grows bit by bit. God luck

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  2. For some reason it never occurred to me I could code tables into my posts. I’ll have to keep that in mind. Thanks! (And your review archive looks great!)

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  3. Oh, you make me wish I had started with WordPress, but I’m afraid I’m stuck on blogger. I feel so inept organizing the blog. I signed up for google analytics months ago but have never gotten it working. I need a blogging tutor — but my nephew is alas in Massachusetts.

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    • lots of the tips are not specific to WordPress Barbara and I’m sure someone has done a similar blog to the wordpress tips one just for people who use the Blogger platform. I’m tempted to ask my 13 year old nephew to sort me out too!

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  1. Pingback: Review: The Bloggers Survival Guide | BookerTalk

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