Each year should bring about new improvements. Here are 10 awesome ways to make your blog better in 2017. Authored by (shoutmeloud.com). ShoutMeLoud is an award winning blog that talks about living a boss free life with blogging. They cover about WordPress, SEO, Make money blogging, Affiliate marketing.Feature image courtesy of Micha Klootwijk via Bigstockphoto.
Whether your blog is popular or you are just a beginner, there is always some room for improvement, and 2017 is a year for improvement.
So why not do a few additional things and pledge to bring out the best?
1. Fix Pixelated Images
If you are wondering why the images on your blog pixelate, here’s why:
Computers tend to resize an image in order to “upgrade” the picture’s resolution. Hence, the pixels of an image change. Also, the pixel size may get slightly tweaked according to the dimensions of your blog page.
So what needs to be done?
And if you find that irksome, stick to Microsoft Paint and Adobe Photoshop. But make sure you always check the pixel-scale of an image before you publish it. The simplest way to do that is to right-click on the image and check in Google images. Google will give you the dimensions of the picture.
Also, try to use images with sharply contrasting colors/bright colors.
Image sharpening also helps to a large extent.
Pay attention to the images you use on your website. This will be very important for 2017.
2. Make Your Website Accessible To Everyone
Gone are the days when a reader could only use a desktop to access a web page.
Today, your reader may own any string of gadgets:
- A tablet
- A phablet
- A notebook
- A netbook
- …or even a smart TV
On the other end of the spectrum, I still come across people using QWERTY keypad phones with Symbian OS.
You don’t know what your reader is using to read your blog. You also probably don’t know about the number of readers you’re losing because of the lack of system/file support.
This happened when I tried to cross-check a site on Internet Explorer:
Yes, there are many people who still use Internet Explorer. I know, it sounds primordial, but if these users can’t access your website, you may be losing potentially faithful readers.
I know you probably don’t want to pay attention to making your site visible across “outdated” platforms.
Even WhatsApp has decided to call off system support on certain phones and operating systems. And yes, they do realize the number of users they could lose. But they can afford it.
They are paying more attention to maintaining their large-scale system. Hence, they have to occasionally “trim the fat”.
But you can’t! And you shouldn’t.
Engaging with every reader is the reason why you have a blog in the first place.
P.S. The statistics show that dominance of mobile over desktop will occur in 2017. So select your framework wisely.
3. Check The Date
I want to emphasize this point.
I’ve come across many blogs recently, and a familiar question started haunting me: Why do these blogs not have “publish” dates on their posts?
You shouldn’t assume that by not publishing the date, your blog will become evergreen. That’s not how it works.
Furthermore, these posts usually do not perform well in Google Search analytics.
Suppose you visit a blog for the first time, and you click on a link to some post. You’re probably looking at the title and the date. If you don’t find the date, you probably just assume it’s an old post anyway, or the site is no longer active.
There is no proof anywhere to see how fresh your blog is. Hence, the blog does not get easily picked up in search engines.
P.S. Don’t forget to attach a plugin to share the post on social media platforms. This way, Google will see that the blog has some recent activity.
4. Make Your Blog Understand Your Readers
This is where metrics tools come into the picture.
Keep an eye on the visitor count, and measure the effectiveness of every blog post.
Keep a record of your growth. Check the number of views of your blogs. Try to understand what is popular on your blog and why it’s popular.
After all, the first and foremost intention of publishing your blog post is so that people read it.
Found this on a fashion blogger’s site and my first response was, “This is so me!”
Communication with your readers is important. Make use of social media. Be prompt and precise in your replies to comments. In case someone criticizes you, take it with a pinch of salt and a lot of grace.
And yes, do not hesitate to remove or block inappropriate/obscene comments, usernames, or links posted into the comments section.
5. Make Your Website Legit
Whether it’s the silly click-bait title of a post or a passive aggressive sales/marketing pitch, don’t ruin your blog in an attempt to “trick” readers into taking an action.
Readers are smart, and so is Google. If you want better visibility of your blog, stick to the normal protocols. A “bake-off” strategy for a blog will never find genuine readers or loyal followers.
Also, do not copy content from someone else just because their content is doing very well. Search engines are not fond of content duplication. Apart from that, you could find yourself at the tail end of a lawsuit.
Create a unique identity for yourself, your blog, and your company.
6. Keep Your Site Secure
This is something most bloggers around the world ignore.
But bloggers need to understand that a single data breach can do enormous amounts of irreversible damage. Non-secure plugins can lead hackers into a surplus of valuable information about you and your blog (especially social media).
It is not uncommon for hackers to tamper with the data on blogs. Hence, it is mandatory to take timely backups of your website.
7. Update Your Website To The Latest Technology
These days, setting up a blog has become extremely simple. This means that more and more people are setting up internet property.
That’s why you need to do your best to stand out among the crowd.
Rather than sticking to the staple PHP WordPress settings and HTML layout, start looking beyond the basics. For example, there are certain script settings for GIFs and vlogging (video blogging).
It is high time you bid adieu to the old-fashioned page setup. If you need to pay money for an updated style, don’t hesitate to do so. You need to understand the long-term implications.
Moreover, keeping your blog updated will boost the authority ratings in Google Search, placing your blog at a better rank.
The metrics always work in the favor of easy to access and technically upgraded pages.
8. Keep Your Act Clean
To avoid a Google-levied penalty, make sure that you erase those spammy links associated with your blog.
If you find it difficult, make sure to reach out to the Google team, and they will help you clear those cookies and spam.
Also, keep a track on affiliated associations. Make sure that all association goes beyond just being a source of income. The affiliated website should add value to your blog, or at least provide readers with a genuine connection.
Make sure that you are aware of Google rules and penalties. In case you have linked to something, make sure you cross-check with Google in order to avoid being blacklisted.
Also, inform the sources about the need to remove the links. (Most blogs and websites don’t bother to do this, but remember that you need to be professional. Hence, as a duty on your part, do inform the sources about removing links.)
P.S. Keep an option open for your readers to delete their cookies. Search results vary depending on their cookie presence.
9. Never Ignore Social Media
Yes, I’m going there. And yes, you can never ignore it.
Before we move deep into this subject, let me tell you that social media is a source of income for a lot of bloggers. Whether you are a fashion blogger or a food blogger, a car fanatic or a wise-head, you cannot deny the fact that social media is a game changer (love it or hate it).
Currently, Facebook is a hub for more than 20 million small businesses across the world. And the count is quite similar for other mediums and platforms.
Of course, not everyone can be as efficient as Rand Fishkin or Sam Hurley when it comes to Twitter marketing, but just because one medium does not work for you, that does not mean that others won’t either.
Give each of them a try, understand what works for you, and you will realize that social media can do wonders for you.
10. Content Is King
I shouldn’t have to say it, but content is king… and data is queen.
Never forget that.
Make 2017 A Great Year For Your Website
There are currently many handy blogging tools and plugins that can help you achieve your blogging objectives. And we’ll expect to see more in 2017.
Each year, try to bring a visible change to your blog. That way, you will always find a way to keep your visitors engaged.