By Peter Nisbet
This article is not intended to provide you with a host of blogging tips, but simply to guide those of you who have either just started or have been blogging for a while but have some bad habits.
Bad blogging habits are easy to get into, and one of the worst is to leave your “About” page unchanged. You know the page: it is provided by Wordpress as standard and a whole host of bloggers leave it unchanged. Why they do this is known only to them, because this is the first page that a large number of first-time visitors to a blog check out, and the reason why many of them leave without looking further.
All you have to do is to say a little about yourself, who you are, and what your blog is about, why you feel qualified to write a blog about this topic and how you can be contacted. If your blog covers a particular niche, rather than being simply a log of personal comments, then your potential readers will want to know why they should believe what you say by reading your credentials on the subject.
There is nothing wrong with having a personal blog about your personal thoughts on things, but if you are presenting yourself as a form of expert on a specific topic, then you will have to persuade readers that you have a right to do so. You should use your ?About? page to do that.
Another tip you should take is to claim your blog with Technorati. This registers it as yours with Technorati, and you can get a whole load more visitors. Since joining Technorati most of my blogs’ traffic rocketed. It takes a while for new blogs to get going, but it’s a lot easier if you make use of sites such as Technorati. The same is true of most of the social bookmarking sites if traffic is important to you. If you are using a blog to promote a product, then this is essential.
If you have a website then don’t get lazy and be content to run your blog from a hosting site such as wordpress.com. It is better to download the software from wordpress.org, and host your own blog. You have much more control over the look and feel of it, and can use any of the thousands of plugins that are available online. You can also use any template you want, or even design your own. That way you get total customization of your blog pages, and can make it more distinctive than the majority hosted on Wordpress or Blogger’s site. If you have tried and had problems downloading and installing it then send me an email. If needed I can take you through it online, or by telephone.
These are the two main tips that any blogger should take if they intend to blog seriously. However, was I to provide the third most important tip for anybody interested in blogging, then it would be to monetize your blog. Don’t blog for nothing. If your blog concerns a specific niche subject you can likely throw up one or two affiliate programs on your sidebar so that they appear with your new posts. A three column blog is useful for this, since your regular sidebar will generally be full of permanent links.
If you monetize using Adsense, a three column layout is even more essential, since you will want a vertical block down one of the columns, in addition to some at the bottom and the middle. A good Adsense layout would be a column to the left or right of the main text column containing a vertical ad unit, a horizontal link unit at the bottom of the blog, and also a horizontal ad unit at the bottom of the latest post. You could also include a search box at the top or bottom of your main sidebar that allows a search either on Google, from which you get income, or on your blog.
You could also include one of your websites as a second search option, providing three altogether. The income might not be a lot, but most blogs with a few hundred visitors a day should be able to make from $10 to $20 daily minimum, depending on the niche. All you need are a few blogs like that.
These are my three main blogging tips. Yours would likely be different, since blogging is a very personal thing, but if you take these three on board you will likely find that you will get more visitors, have more fun and also be able to put a bit put aside for the holidays or that unexpected bill that always comes at the wrong time.
For more tips, information and help on blogging, visits Pete’s blog Blog on Blog where you can see these tips is action, although those with their own websites can get some good SEO information on My SEO Blog (very imaginative title!) which is Pete’s main SEO blog. Both are on his own websites.
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