Your website is one of the most important tools for growing your business. But it can be intimidating to manage if you’re not very technically inclined. Don’t let that scare you. You don’t have to be a tech wizard to manage your site and get it to its fullest potential.
Here is a simple checklist to help assure your website is doing its job.
Use a reliable yet affordable hosting service when starting out. SiteGround and Bluehost are both great hosting services and affordable.
Keywords for SEO
Use the free Yoast plugin (you can download it under “plugin’s” in your WP dashboard).
Once you have it installed, go to “Settings” in your dashboard, select Yoast and enter a title, description for your business and the top keywords for your business. An example of a keyword would be “designer diaper bags”, or “virtual assistance help”, or “Thornton veterinary hospitals”.
Then, on each page and post, you’ll want to add a title, description and keywords specific to that page or post. There will be a place to do this underneath where you write the content on the New Post or Page.
Social Sharing Buttons
You want your content and images to be easily shareable! Use a free, simple to put social media buttons next to your content. Also, be sure and use a free plugin to make sharing images on Pinterest easy for your readers.
While plugins are great and add functionality to your WordPress blog, you don’t want to install too many plugins and you definitely want to deactivate any that you aren’t using. Too many plugins can slow down the speed of your site.
Go to www.google.com/analytics, create an account, and then plug the code into your website. Depending on your theme, where you place the code will vary. Most themes have a place in “theme settings” for you to put your GA code.
Google Analytics will help you keep track of your traffic, the source of your traffic and which pages on your site are most visited. This is important info to track!
Opt-in Box for List Building
Make sure you are collecting email addresses! Even if you are selling a product and not trying to do regular email blasts, you should be collecting the email addresses from everyone who visits your site. Offer something useful and free to encourage sign-ups.
Use a service like Mailchimp, MailerLite or ConvertKit to do this. Most of these services have a plugin that will help you place the opt-in box on your site.
Place opt-in boxes in these key places on your site:
- Homepage –above the fold (so visitors don’t have to scroll down to see it)
- Top of side-bar or in the header
- Bottom of every blog post
- Bottom of About page
Another great strategy for growing an email list is to offer lead magnets that are specific to each blog post.
You Can Do It!
Managing your blog can feel overwhelming. It can feel like there are a million “impossible” things to do. Break down each action item into a daily or weekly “to-do” and tackle each item one at a time.
Creating an Editorial Strategy for Your Blog
The key to building a successful blog is consistency. The best way to have consistency is to formulate an editorial strategy that you can stick to.
Staying consistent is hard in the early stages of a blog when not many people are reading it yet, but it’s key to building the framework for blogging success.
Here are some tips to help you get your editorial strategy started!
Create a plan
Sit down and think about what your overall goals are for your blog.
Whether you can write one blog post a week or four, schedule into your editorial calendar. Make sure you are being realistic with the amount of time you have to devote to your blog.
It’s better to commit to one article per week and stay consistent then it is to start off with four or five per week only to drop off the calendar completely for several weeks.
Once you determine how many articles you plan to post per week, choose your posting days and stick to it!
Grow your email list
Building an email list full of loyal followers should be an important part of your overall strategy.
Have a strategy for growing that list, whether it’s giving out lead magnets in your blog posts, hosting challenges or conducting webinars.
And once you have people on your email list, be sure and email them regularly. Build a welcome email sequence so your fans can get to know you.
It’s super easy to start building an email list, email them a couple newsletters and then drop off the face of the earth, but it’s a really bad thing to do to the people who signed up to hear from you.
Utilize social media
Whether you love social media or despise it, chances are your ideal customer is using Facebook, Pinterest and/or Instagram, therefore, you should keep a consistent presence on a couple of these platforms.
Pick 2-3 platforms (Pinterest, Instagram etc.) that you can really rock! Be sure and pick ones that your ideal customer hangs out on and create a plan for posting quality posts that will grab your ideal audience’s attention.
Do one big activity per month or quarter
Depending on your business and your schedule, you may want to have a goal of one “big” activity every month or quarter. Here are some ideas to get the creative juices flowing:
- Create a digital magazine
- Speak at a few events
- Do guest posts on a larger blog
- Hold a free webinar and promote on social media (make sure people opt-in to get access!)
- Do a free online workshop
- Do a joint venture and offer your expertise to someone who already has a good size list
- Launch a product
Get out your calendar
Now the key is to put a plan in action and execute. Don’t just think about it – put that editorial strategy in action TODAY!
Pull out your calendar, whether it’s Google Calendar or a paper calendar and start plotting out your dates above into your calendar.
Remember you need to have it on the calendar to make it HAPPEN!