A successful blog is filled with a steady stream of keyword rich, well written, relevant content that is properly categorized. Writing a 500-word post is sometimes the easy part. This checklist will help you manage all the other steps.
Planning the Post
How Often – At a minimum, you should be writing four blog posts a month. For inspiration on what to write and how to write check out our Blogging Success Guide.
Date – Pick your launch dates and stick with them. Setting a regular schedule makes it easier for your readers to find new content and you will find the deadlines help you stay on track.
Working Title – You have to start somewhere, so brainstorm 4 topics. Once you start writing, don’t be afraid to change your working title.
Ideas, Inspiration, and Links – As you start fleshing out your concepts capture notes and links to other resources which support your opinion. You may want to include those in your post.
Keyword or Phrase – Which of your top keywords will this blog post be centered on? Take a few minutes to think of synonyms and related phrases which will help you bring variety to the post.
Categories – Every blog should have several categories that allow you to cluster related blog posts and make it easy for visitors using the search function to find more articles on the same topic.
Call to Action – Every page on your website should have a logical next step. Maybe it is a link to a download, video, podcast, contact form, or quiz. Don’t leave your readers hanging. Be sure to plan ahead for the next step.
Getting Ready for Launch
Once you have written your post, you aren’t done. Be sure to check all of these boxes to transform mediocre content into a standout post.
Proofread – Nothing destroys your credibility faster than typos in the first paragraph. If you aren’t a detail person assign the task to someone else on your team. If you are a solo entrepreneur then trade proofreading with a friend. But don’t launch without it.
Alt Text – Images are a terrific addition, just be sure to add alt text, relevant images names, or a description to each image. This will help search engines index the visual content of your page just as they do the words. Also, for visually impaired people visiting your site, the name “jpegone” will not help them get the full benefit of your message.
Featured Image – This little picture serves two valuable roles. Images will encourage visitors to read individual articles on your blog. One of the best ways to widen the reach of your content is through social media shares, the featured image will help drive traffic from social media platforms.
SEO – Make sure search engines can index your content properly by creating a relevant, keyword rich title, unique keyword URL, and meta description. If you are using a WordPress Website, the Yoast SEO tool from Jetpack makes this easy.
Links – One of the best ways to help visitors and search engines explore your site more is with links. Be sure to add links to older posts from each new post. This is also a great time to go back and give a little love to the older post. Consider adding more information or another image to refresh the older post as well.
Schedule – Once your post is done, it is time to schedule it. It is helpful, but not required to post at the same time and day each week.
Publish – Be sure to check that the blog post actually went live when it was supposed to. Sometimes there is a system error, sometimes a user error. Either way, it is worth taking the time to double check.
Social Share – Grab the link and share your new blog post on relevant social media sites.
Optional Newsletter – Give your blog post a boost by sharing the link in a weekly or monthly newsletter.