Friday, June 28, 2013

TIps for Posting to Blogger

Here are some quick tips for optimizing the use of Blogger posts to make blogs easier for readers to find useful content and navigate, and to take full advantage of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

Labels

  • Labels are used to categorize posts into topics/subjects.
  • Always always select Labels on every post.
  • Labels allow readers to view posts by Topic (see the Topics cloud on the left).

Images

  • Always add an image.  It makes the post more visually interesting for readers.
  • Fill out the at least the Title in Image Properties and fill out Alt if there is more to say about the image.
  • Use a caption, if it adds value to the User eXperience.
  • Upload images in to the blog, rather than using images from the web.

Links

  • Always set Links to open in a new window, so users will still have the blog page open when they follow links.

Search Description

  • Always fill out the Search Description.  
  • It's used by search engines to display a descriptive line of text that appears under the link in the search results.

Use Jump Breaks in your posts

  • Create 'After the jump' summaries which let you create expandable post summaries in your blog posts, so longer posts appear as an intro with a link to Read More.
  • This improves the blog readers User eXperience.

Dating the Post


Keep Formatting Simple

  • Use the simple styles in the Headings pulldown (Normal, Heading, Subheading, etc.).
  • Use the Headings pulldown in the Blogger's post editor to show outline like levels to readers - Heading = Level 1, Subheading = Level 2 and Minor heading = Level 3.  Examples are below.
  • Don't change the Font or Font size.
    Except in maybe a special case, like highlighting programming code with the Courier font.
  • This let the blog template's Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) control the look and keeps the blog look and feel consistent and manageable.
  • Help on: Using the Blogger's post editor and Write your post
  • Remember:  Blogger's post editor does NOT display content exactly as it will be seen by readers (it is not a full WYSIWYG editor), so you must preview before you publish.

Preview Before you Publish

  • Review your work to make sure all of the formatting works as you intended.
  • Use Preview in the Blogger's post editor.  And view it again after you publish then edit it if things need some fixing up.
  • Remember:  Once you publish the post, the blog will send emails with the post content in it.  So use Preview and do not publish until you have proof read it and are sure it looks good.
  • Note:  You can Save posts as drafts, while you're working on it.  Readers cannot see the drafts.

Monitor the Blog & Reply Quickly


Tell Readers about your Blog and You


Example Formatting using styles in Headings pulldown

Use the Headings pulldown in the Blogger's post editor to show outline like levels to readers - Heading = Level 1, Subheading = Level 2 and Minor heading = Level 3.  Examples are below.

Note that the line spacing below is controlled entirely by the blog template's CSS.  The lines below, while viewed in the blog editor do not have added lines between them.  So be sure to add blank lines where you'd like them.  Use Preview in the Blogger's post editor to check that it looks right.

Heading  = Level 1 - Uses HTML element <h2> 

Normal paragraph 1 - text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text.
Normal paragraph 2
Quote paragraph 1 - Uses HTML element <blockquote> - text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text and text.
Quote paragraph 2
Normal paragraph 3

Subheading = Level 2 - Uses HTML element <h3>

Normal

Minor heading = Level 1 - Uses HTML element <h4>

Normal

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