Has your blog seen better days? Is it lacking in pizzazz? Have your views declined and you have no idea why?
I would start by taking a look at your site with a fresh pair of eyes. The best way to tell if you are outdated is by doing your research and the number one place to start is to look at the biggest blogs around. Why are their views so high? Why do they get hundreds of comments? What do they do that you don’t? Yes, content is king and fresh content will keep readers hanging around for more but so will an attractive site which is easy to navigate. Here’s how we think you could revamp and revive yours in order to increase your traffic and hopefully, your success!
Before you even start with how your blog looks we need to cover the basics. First of all, are you self-hosted? If not, make that move. You want to show you are serious and professional, especially if you want to monetise your blog. Get a domain name that is yours and clearly states your blog name in it. Purchase all the options if possible, you don’t want somebody else using the .net to your .com. Go back through your old posts and check the SEO on every single one. I know this will take time but it will work wonders for your traffic and will help when somebody searches for a topic you have written about. If you have any broken links, 404 errors, HTML issues, have them fixed. You can either do this yourself with a quick online tutorial (YouTube can be a saviour!) or pay for an expert to look over your site and have any problems ironed out. That way, you are not overhauling a blog that has underlying issues.
Now onto the fun parts…
If you want to go all out and make a huge change to draw in the readers, a new theme is a must. Take a look at what is new on your platform. WordPress has so many fantastic free themes to select from but if you fancy upgrading or buying from another site, this is possible too. Don’t think you are limited, do your research and take your time. Select something that says ‘hey, this is me’ but take into consideration what it is you primarily blog about. Make your selection worth it.
Colours can mean so much. We have previously delved into the psychology of colour meanings before but just to have a quick re-cap:
Red can be very powerful and portray feelings of love or passion, ambition, action and power but it can also make people think of anger or danger and can be a reminder of red crosses on school work. It is a colour you need to think carefully about using and would probably work best if your blog is aimed at gaming or tech/business.
Green can be very soothing and portray positive aspects including being kind and loyal. However, it is the colour of envy and greed also. The right tone can be perfect for most blog topics with gardening being an obvious one.
Blue is a trustworthy colour in business. It is loyal, reliable and calm. Perfect for parenting blogs. But just watch you don’t overdo it and come across as too conservative.
Pink is pretty and girly, flirty and soft but it won’t be the colour for you if you blog about tech! This is more for the younger person’s blog, especially if beauty is highly featured.
You need to pick your colour scheme that will match your personality as well as the topics you cover. Have a play around and see what sits right with your new theme.
Revamp Your Logo
As you are changing your theme and re-addressing your colours you may as well go the whole hog and re-brand. A new look and a new logo will be a lovely fresh start for you. There will be plenty of people eager to create a logo for you and at a pretty price but why not have a go at your own design? Afterall, the blog is yours and the design should reflect who you are and what you do. It can be very easy to create images and add shapes and colour.
Remove Outdated Badges
Are you still displaying badges from linky’s you joined in with years ago? Do you have a networking badge that you no longer need? Do you need those extra widgets in your sidebar? If you click onto your site and feel that it looks cluttered then get rid! Keep everything that is relevant to who you are and what you do now but ditch the rest. Clean, crisp looks are what you are after for your relaunch. If you monetise your blog your sidebar will also be a prime spot for brands wanting to place their ads so make it clear that you have the space to host these. Get your business head on and leave your hobby head behind.
Revive Your About Me Page
I am pretty sure that the about me page on most blogs gets written on day one and then forgotten about… am I right?! We are all guilty of finding this page the hardest to write which means it is often neglected but it is the one place where a reader can learn everything they need about you in one place without having to scroll through all of your old posts. It is also a place a brand will immediately read in order to see if you are a good fit for a collaboration. How can they decide if it still says Mum of one yet you are in fact now a Mum of 3?!! Or what if you are no longer just a gaming reviewer but also a gaming creator? Have you written an e-Book that isn’t on there, have you given public talks or provided courses for other bloggers? Include it all! Shout it from the roof-tops, this is me, I have achieved this, this and this, come and read my blog, stick around and see what else I can offer. This page should be interesting, fun, fact-filled and leave people wanting to know more.
Social Media Links
Right, first off, if I came to your site right this minute would I easily be able to see where to find you on Facebook or Instagram? If not, why not?! I am your new reader and I want to follow you on your channels. And please don’t say it is because you still have the bog standard WordPress ones hiding at the bottom of the page/post… there are plenty of up to date plugins that can give you pretty floating icons, sharing is caring buttons and widgets. Make it clear that you have more to say on these social media platforms and make it easy as pie for somebody to share your content to their own!
If you blog about lots of different topics you will hopefully be categorising these when you create your blog post? You can categorise that one post under several categories if needed but you want to make them searchable from your homepage, ideally. If I land on your site having read a gardening piece and I want to see more on DIY, it needs to be right there for me to search and click to. This could be done as a drop-down menu in the sidebar or perhaps in the main menu at the top of the page. Just ensure that you include your best categories at the top (don’t worry about alphabetical order, go in with what will get read and give you those hits) and make it easy to navigate, I can’t stand it when I go to move the mouse down and the menu vanishes… always test your changes!
Create a Newsletter
Make your site even more interesting by offering your readers a weekly newsletter. This could include any updates about yourself or what’s going to happen next, plus links to that week’s blog posts. This could be advertised in your sidebar or as a pop-up, just make sure the pop-up can be easily clicked away and doesn’t keep re-appearing. Pop-ups are funny things and some people absolutely hate them and will click off a site before reading anything so do keep an eye on your stats if you are going to trial one. Just another note on newsletters (dare I say it?!) please make sure you are GDPR compliant, eh…
Make Outstanding Blog Headers
If you are going to revamp your blog you will need to take the time to go back over all your old posts and check how they now look. I know, I know, it’s a huge job and it will definitely take a fair few (ok, a lot of) hours to click on every post and get those headers spot on but honestly, it will be worth it. One thing you want is consistency. You need the right size, the right look (to match your new theme) and you want to have yourself seen as a brand, because that’s exactly what you are. We have the perfect templates for you to use on Presbee Design but if you need more info just check out this post here.
And once you have ticked each of these off it is time to celebrate the changes across all of your social media platforms and get those views flowing!