One way to kick off a book like this is to cut right to the chase and give you some simple, straight-forward, top 10 lists of dos and don’ts. So, without further ado, let’s get to it.
The objective is to make your blog successful—as a source of advertising revenue, as a way to gain some exposure for yourself, as a Way to state your case, or as a combination of all three. This book focuses more on the blogonomical side of blogging. So, fortune rather than fame is the primary focus of this book.
You can employ these 10 steps to help make your blog a roaring success:
1. Code access.
Ensure the platform allows access to the code so you can place items in the order you choose. Other-wise, you may not be able to rearrange the things on your blog pages the way that you want them.
2. Keyword research.
Do your keyword research to select the best keywords to use to integrate into your blog titles, your blog name, article titles, and so on.
3. Categories and keywords.
Edit your categories to integrate keywords into URLs.
4. Linking to other Hogs.
Add links to other blogs. A few related blogs is more than adequate, but make sure they are useful to your readers and that those links are trustworthy. Trust is a big issue for people using the Internet.
5. Importance of blog directory submissions.
Get your blog into the top blog directories; you want the links from those directories back to your blog. This is very important because it will give your blog better visibility. People can find you more easily.
6. Regular directory submissions.
Submit to the usual directories, including Google, Yahoo, and DMOZ.org. This is especially important if your blog is also your Web site.
7. Blog posting length.
A Hog is an entity into which you make entries (post your written articles). Each entry or article is called a post, a posting, or an article. Try for post lengths of at least 200 words, and integrate selected keywords near the top of the post. The keyword should be related to the title and is used by search engines to help understand the focus of the article.
8. Moderating your blog. Be alert for comment spam.
Moder-ate all comments and delete those containing useless links, those that are off topic, any adult-related items, or anything that might offend your readers.
9. Clean URLs. Use clean URLs if the option is given.
A clean URL hides many of the operators and coding characters. Clean URLs are easier for a search engine spider to crawl and index into its related search engine automatically.
10. Frequency of new blog postings.
Make frequent postings. Al-though it is not Search Engine Optimization (SE0) per se, frequent posts will keep the spiders coming back to see what’s new. This will help to keep fresh content flowing into search engine indexes from your domain.
THINGS TO AVOID WHEN BLOGGING
Ideally, you will want to make a concerted effort to avoid practices that are not sensible from a blogonomical perspective. Generally, be as honest and objective as possible without being overly opinionated. In other words, be honest without being offensive.
Stick to the topic with a positive approach by offering solutions, rather than pointing out negative issues with no possible solutions. When it comes to opinions, let your readers and commenters offer their opinions, but watch to ensure everyone is being given an equal voice, which is free from ridicule.
Contributing commenters should feel free to express their own opinions on topics, but keep in mind that if those opinions clash with the best interests of advertisers, you could have problems.
Employ these 10 steps to help you avoid a disastrous blog:
1. Credibility killers.
If you take products for review make sure that you disclose this to your readers. Be honest. Also, when placing advertisements on your blog, be very careful in choosing advertisers whose products or services are topically relevant.
2. Lack of activity.
Make regular postings as often as a few times a week, perhaps even once a day. Posting once a month or once a year is pointless. Also, making seven posts all at once, once per week, is ineffective in comparison to doing a single post per a day. If you write seven posts all at once—store them locally on your computer and then post them one at a time over the next seven days. Give your readers a chance to read each posting.
3. Lack of content.
Avoid postings that are very short. Generally, 200 words is a good length. Anything longer might be scanned too quickly or avoided for being too much to read. And a 10-word entry may be seen as not offering any value. Remember, your readers are spending their precious time reading your blog, as much as you are spending your precious time writing it.
4. Hot linked images.
Hot linking most often refers to the practice of inserting an image into your article that is hosted by another Web site. Basically, you’re using their image and bandwidth without permission. Hot linking is also known as inline linking, leaching, direct linking, or bandwidth theft. With all those derogatory terms, it should suffice to say that hotlinking is not a fair practice.
5. Advertising overload.
While it may seem tempting to sign up for multiple ad programs and use the maximum number of allowable ads from each program on your blog, this is a surefire recipe for failure. Too many ads will chase readers away and detract from the content of your blog. If you decide to use ads from multiple programs, read their rules carefully and be judicious in your placement of ad units. Less is often more.
6. Duplicating content of others.
Copying and pasting without permission or without credit could lead to a bad reputation for you. Also, be aware that deliberate copyright infringement can render you liable, which can cost more than you might imagine. Also, in the United States and elsewhere, infringing on someone else’s copyright can leave you subject to criminal prosecution.
7. Offensive postings.
Certain postings may offend readers, advertisers, or other bloggers. Yes, the Internet does have a spirit of free speech and free enterprise, but if you are trying to make money, avoid commentary that could cause offense. Some blog providers allow readers to mark a blog as being offensive. Enough negative flagging can get you switched off. Then you have to start all over again elsewhere. That’s not effective use of your time.
8. Maintaining objectivity.
Don’t stray off the topic of your blog or your posting. For example, if your blog is about Jeeps, then don’t spend time talking about Ferraris—unless, of course, that topic is somehow relevant to Jeeps. Focus on the point of your blog and your postings. Don’t avoid topics and content that may make advertisers look a little silly.
However, in the long run it is sometimes better to absorb a little friction with an advertiser than to risk losing readers. It is up to advertisers to answer for their products, not you. You are not there to specifically sell products for someone else—you are merely telling people what they can buy and where to find it. If certain advertisers have product issues, it is better for their business to attend to those issues that their customers may be corn-plaining about on your blog. In short, it is better for an advertiser to respond to a small problem rather than find out about a problem when it’s big enough to hurt them.
9. Comment spam.
You need to police your comments for sparn. Captcha code entries can be used for open entry comment fields.
Note: A captcha code is an image with letters and numbers shown to the reader. The image can usually be read only by the human eye; most spiders cannot read the text in the image, thus precluding them from posting automated spam comments. Switching off trackbacks can also help to reduce comment spam.
Note: A trackback is a little like a remote comment, where the comment is not directly posted to your blog, but rather posted to the commenter’s blog and then pinged back to yours. As a result, trackbacks are subjected to much automation and are thus comment spam.
10. Poorly designed templates.
Ugly templates that make you squint, squirm, and wriggle in your seat, or that look just odd or ugly—should just be avoided. Try to blend both foreground and background colors of your blog and ads. The more discernible the contrast between advertisement and blog, the less likely it will get clicked on.