Imagine your blog is your child, and you spend a significant amount of time educating “him” in topics that you are of interest. Once you teach him something, you will go about telling everyone about it: be it through Twitter or Facebook. You feel proud of him but have you ever spare a thought of what your blog really wants?
Here are 5 must-have that makes your blog a class different from others. I will also share a tip or two that I’ve learnt, and I thought it might be useful for you. Give your blog what he deserves today, and he’ll pay you back generously.
1) Google Analytics
Like any child, they like to be praised for the good things he has achieved. But how are you going to know how well your blog has done? Before you start writing your next post, make sure you have Google Analytics (or any analytic tools) installed in your blog. With Google Analytic, you can see vital statistics on how many unique visitors visited your blog, where are they from and from which referral channel. This is so that you can gear your content towards that channel’s user profile.
TIP: If you know that many people are coming in from specific channels like your Facebook account, Twitter or LinkedIn, you can research your next topic by visiting these social sites and try to figure out what questions are people asking.
By focusing on what people are asking, you know that they will be keen to read your blog if they know you’re going to answer their question.
2) Google Webmaster Tool
To me, Google’s webmaster tool is a great friend of Google Analytics. It is an extension, in a way, from Google Analytics that gives you insight of how search-engine-friendly your blog are and how well are your blog’s search-ranking. In addition, it also gives you an idea of how many people have clicked on your blog and which term have they searched.
TIP: Here is another powerful resource for you to know what people are searching and which search terms bring you the most visitors. Upon knowing what interests people, focus on these topics. As you create more of a specific topic, not only will you get more visitors, you will also realize that your blog’s search ranking improves over time.
If you have already created an account with Google Analytics, you can use the same account to activate the Google Webmaster Tool.
3) Mobile Interface
Are you reading this blog using your mobile phone? If you are, that explains (even if you are not) that more and more people are reading blogs with a small screen. It’s really not that “sexy” for others to see your blog deformed using their iPhone. Your blog will be embarrassed. You need to make sure that your blog is mobile-screen friendly. I’m sure there are lots of resources that would help you to achieve that.
TIP: If you’re using WordPress like I do, this page might be a good place to start.
4) Google Authorship
You might have heard of it that Google has changed its search engine algorithm that places more emphasis on content quality and not back links. One of the initiatives they have introduced is Google Authorship; a way for Google to recognize the content that you have published online. Once set-up properly, it adds a certain credibility to the content, and when your content shows up in the search results, this is what you’ll see.
TIP: In order to set-up your Google Authorship information, you’ll need to create an account in Google Plus (put in your information and display photo of yourself) and add your blog URL into the “Contributor to” section.Once done, make sure a byline containing your name appears on each page of your content and links it back to your Google Plus account.
5) Twitter Card
Here is the finishing move to make your blog feel proud. Twitter has recently introduced Twitter card that enables you to attach media experiences to tweets you published. If you’re a twitter user, I bet you have came across tweets that look like this when you click / tab on it.As you can see, it gives a quick summary to your audience and enticed them to click and find out more. Yes, it is definitely a good add-on to your blog to drive more traffic.
TIP: Before we proceed further, you must know that Twitter is in an early stage of implementing this feature. Therefore, there is no guarantee that you can get it working although it is still worth a try, at least for me.
There are two things you need to do. First, you have to set-up some codes on your blog where you can find the how-to here. Too technical for you? You have to count yourself lucky if you are using WordPress (again) as there is ready-made plug-in to speed things up. Secondly, you will have to sign up for it here.
With that said, it would mean a lot of things for you to do now so get going and add these features. Should you have any thing you would like to ask or add-on to my list above, it would be great if you can leave me a comment below.
Now that we have improved on our blog, I am going to work on my next post on content marketing, and how we can use blogs (or any content) to sell. If you have written something on this subject, feel free to share it with me!