Today let’s focus on loving your blog.
This month, why not love your blog and make a few fixes to optimize it? These are things I, too, have been trying to implement.Â I’ve pulled tips from friends and fellow bloggers as well as my own biased opinions. I’m including some fabulous examples I’ve run into for each section. Here we go!
Whatever your header image, make it clean and easy to read or see. If it’s a picture of you, make it as high-res as possible. No one wants to see a smartphone picture stretched out and fuzzy across 800px. If it’s a bunch of words (like mine), keep it clear. I’d like to see a division or separation of blog title and blog content.
- Â The Book Smugglers – These gals have revamped their site and logos regularly.
- The Broke and the Bookish – very simple text header
- Bargain Babe – caricature of her and her nice big header
- OC Mom Blog – Bam. The blog header says it all.
- Fangs for the Fantasy – Fantasy book reviews read with a social justice and gender lens! HELLO. (Obviously, this is one of my fave book bloggers.)
Meaningful Blog Post Titles
Many my snarky titles don’t help my web traffic, and I have to be careful with it. I find that my regular readers and people who know me, get my blog. Strangers (new visitors) may not. Vague titles don’t help. I’ve been working on this myself – trying to theme a post and make the title as concise as I can without losing my flavor.
- Fit & Awesome – Lindsay titles all her posts succinctly, and I know what I’m reading every time I visit her blog.
- Raised by Culture – Xenia will add fun titles to her sponsored posts, and I see her personality come through.
- Vegan Beauty Review – I know exactly what I’m getting with Sunny’s post titles.
Themed Posts That Make Sense
I’m not regular #MENday poster even though I kind of came up with the idea. AJ publishes much more regularly and I always look forward to her #MENday posts on Mondays! I think it belongs on her blog more than it does mine because IT MAKES MORE SENSE! Lesson learned? Maybe.
Some of these bloggers have fantastic weekly themed posts Â that I always catch myself reading, even if I don’t comment back on their blog.
- Confessions of a Fat Girl – Like I said, AJ has got some great themes and she even put them in categories.
- The Valentine RD – Melissa writes about a Fabulous Female every Friday!
- The Pink Sith – (Talk about a great header!) Pink Sith does a Top 10 Tuesday on beauty products.
- A Reader of Fictions – Christina (what a great name if I do say so myself) posts Cover Snark on Fridays and her commentary is hi-larious! I laugh ALL THE TIME, and I always look forward to these posts.
Use Good Photos
This one comes from both a personal viewpoint and a professional viewpoint. I once had a client whose food product was perfect to send to influencers to review and try. The client adamantly refused to work with bloggers because he couldn’t stand seeing the company’s products in bad smartphone photos. He had a point, albeit a bit extreme.
Photos in focus are important. Lighting is important. (See above photo – craptastic.) Â I’ve read posts with crappy pictures, and it does somewhat take away from the copy I just read. Fuzzy photos don’t work for your brand. Use a free service like PicMonkey if you don’t have Photoshop. I even use iPhoto to brighten up pictures!
Not everyone is rich. Do you know how much I owe in student loans?? (Just so you know, I will die and still have to pay my loans while I’m dead.) I use a Canon S100 point-and-shoot as well as my iPhone. Hands down, the Canon wins. If I know I’m blogging about a product, I’m using a “real” camera. If I’m posting on social media, I use my phone for timeliness.
- Raised by Culture – Yes, again. Xenia just takes fantastic photos with her giant Canon DSLR. I love her pics.
- Shop Eat Sleep – Maya recently wrote about her trip to Greece. She uses a Canon G12 – and the photos look amazing! I’ve never thought about visiting Greece… until now.
- Betzy’s Makeup – I like Betzy’s photos because I can SEE the pigments from the makeup she swatches. I’m not sure what camera she uses but I’m pretty sure it’s not a phone camera.
- Create Celebrate Explore – I’m never going to be Tonya. I don’t craft, I don’t make bento boxes, and I sure as hell don’t take nice photos like her. I met Tonya last year at a Craftcon and she uses a DSLR.
Now that you’ve got the basics down, wha’cha waiting for? Tell me if these are elements you’re working on! How far along are you in the process?
If you’ve got some super examples of great blogs, would you please post them in the comments? I’d love to follow them.
Also, what are YOUR tips for loving your blog and optimizing it?