While finishing another post, I stumbled across this Blogging Writing Style Guide, which I started once upon a time. So, I have made a few quick updates and thought I would share this checklist, in case it might be useful for someone else.
Blog Post Style
Here are a few basic guidelines to help you with your blog post structure. These are fairly obvious things, but it never hurts to make sure you cover the basics.
Blog Post Structure
your blog post structure is highly important. One must keep in mind that your post is likely to be read in multiple formats especially mobile formats on phones and iPads. Additionally, everyone’s busy these days and has information overload; so, it’s important to organize your content in a way that people can get valuable information quickly and easily without filtering through too much excess fluff. Basic items to check are:
- Format for Scannability (the ease with which a particular body of text can be read and the main concepts understood by the reader)
- Use paragraph headers (usually, levels 1 through 3)
- Paragraph headers should be within 15-60 characters in length for best SEO performance
- Add Bullets or tables to organize lists
- Add links to re;ated post [when applicable] in the body of the blog post.
- Add Related Internal Reference link at the bottom of the article.
Photo and Graphics
it’s long been known that nearly everyone is visual and that pictures speak more than words in a compact way. So, paying attention to your pictures and your infographics to quickly and efficiently communicate your main points is essential. These items should be helpful:
- Always add pictures to an article
- Add process step picture to clarify written instructions
- Add infographics, if you have them
- Populate the Caption, Alternate text, and Image Title Attribute properties on Photos
- Always set the open in separate tab property
SEO Essentials For Writing Blogs and Pages
SEO is a critical part of any blog post. However, no one can be an expert on all the search engines out there. So here are a few quick things that are appropriate to almost any search engine:
- Use Hierarchical categories and sub-categories to relate topics
- Add Menu should only hold essential categories organized for shallow logical navigation (minimal clicking)
- The Menu should contain both page and category structures
- Periodically review and update menu to ensure recent changes, if appropriate, included
Driving Blog Visits
the reason most of us write blogs is to disseminate information, ideas, and help others. So is essential that people be able to find our blog and want to come back to our blog. Here are a few quick tips:
- Publish new blog posts on social media (Twitter, etc.)
- Revise blog posts as they age and add additional content (e.g., new pictures, infographic, more current information, expand essential facts, etc.)
- Republish revised blog post to social media (Twitter, etc.)
blogs are all about content so you need a strategy to make sure that you can publish regularly and that you publish when your blog is likely to have the most interest to your reading community. Here are some ideas:
- Keep a list of articles to be published
- Pay attention to seasonal and calendar driven opportunities, if they apply to your blog’s content
- Read site comments and address issues
- Use blogs to document questions and answers from your readers. Also, be sure to answer the reader’s comment directly.