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20 April 2013

Week Six Growing Your Blog

Welcome to week six of Growing Your Blog series! This is the final week and if you've been on for the beginning it's been quite a six weeks! What improvements have you seen in your blog? 


Week Six Growing Your Blog


Do you need to catch up? 
To view the previous weeks click here: Week One, Week Two, Week Three, Week Four and Week Five

 This week we'll discuss some important information, but I also want to hear from YOU!




Let's start with SORRY!
As some of you might remember from last week I mentioned that my Gram had passed away. I took an immediate trip to Florida I lost regular connection to wifi, and only managed to have internet access by plugging my phone into my computer and using cell service. So I apologize for not returning comments, I will answer them today (as I'm writing this)!

 

Comments
One thing I saw over and over was a lot of urls in comments, so I wanted to provide you with a little code that will allow you to add LINKS that will look like this:
Abbi @ Seasons of a Homemaker   

It's a VERY simple code I promise and good news is when you're commenting almost all comment areas (even wordpress) allow you <a> html tags

Okay so when leaving a comment and you want to add your name and then your blog here is what you'll want to type (delete the spaces before and after the quotations):
<a href=" YOUR WEBSITE ">WEBSITE NAME</a>
That's it! I love how simple html can SOMETIMES be!

 

Planning Your Blog
This seems like such simple advise, but I can't tell you how many times over the last few weeks I've mentioned it to other bloggers. Plan your blog, I know sometimes a thought that you want to blog about hits you between the eyes and you want to post NOW, i'm not saying don't. I'm guilty of the very thing when I first began blogging, but this wouldn't be called Growing Your Blog, if I was repeating things that DIDN'T work for me! 
The example I find helpful is lets say you have some awesome followers (I know I do) and you provide the same general thing (recipes, printables, crafts, diy, etc) but if you only post as the mood hits you, even if you've done three of these things and just haven't blogged about them, how can your followers keep up? Let's say you're just beginning and you have a mass stack of things you want to post so you find 15 minutes and start typing (sounds like your killing the keyboard right)! Instead of just posting them, I want you to look at the handy toolbar to the right (if you're on blogger), see the SCHEDULE, set a day and stagger those posts. See the labels Come up with about 10-20 labels you'll use all the time. It's simplistic for your viewers, trust me when I go to blogs I don't go through each things. Now I might do ones for specific holidays (instead of a general holiday) and things like that. If you're an entire recipe or craft  blog sort it by cooking methods, ingredient, materials, expertise level, etc. 
As a more experienced blogger now, but not the best, my goal is to at least publish one printable a week. I have this handy blog planner that will be coming out next week, why am I waiting you may ask? Because I produced a set already this week (freezer cooking). However, because this printable has A LOT to do with this post as it's a BLOG PLANNER, I'm including the TWO blog planners I have made, I hope you enjoy the Weekly Blog Planner and the Blog Idea Planner.
Try blog planning, don't be a sparatic poster, and set a goal of one a week, maybe one recipe a week, one craft, one post of photos from the week, etc. That will help your followers know there will always be new content, we all love new content!!

 

Check your Blog
When was the last time you clicked on the links? Made sure your POPULAR posts had good pictures?? If you'll notice I just changed my pictures in my popular posts section. This took me a lot of time, to add the words using (picmonkey) and then to redo the pinterest steps to make them awesome. See last weeks post to do that! But blogging is about not just allowing yourself to become comfortable. I've thought of switching over to wordpress and maybe one day I will, but I'm not ready yet.
Go look through your blog, see what your readers see. Is it too cluttered? Is it hard to read, no joke I went to a blog this week that had script for the words in the post. Did that author read her own blog? She had to see that it was difficult from a readers point of view. It's nice to have font for the header or post titles that's all script but the whole post. At that point YOUR CONTENT WILL NOT MATTER, all that will matter is the reader just left your blog! We've talked about pictures, but even I don't take the best pictures, is it a lot of work to go back and retake them, yup. Did I just redo an entire printable because I looked at it and saw how the script isn't helping it's distracting and it's my MOST POPULAR printable!! My cleaning schedule just got revamped! Maybe you won't like it now (it's still available the old way) but I didn't think it looked clean enough. Maybe you'll go back to my printables in the next few weeks and find in "funky" script changed and gone. Who knows. 
What I want to impress is go see what your readers see. Thats where your viewership and content comes from.
Improve your writing skills. I almost didn't pass high school (Hi I'm Abbi and I'm transparently honest) so my husband proof reads everything and I mean maybe three recent posts haven't been proof read. *Sigh* if only I had paid attention in high school. 
Bottom line of this is go VISIT YOUR BLOG! It's yours, be proud but make the changes that will help your viewers enjoy it more!



 

Still need more help?
Do you have a few questions? Comment and I'll answer!

Do you need hours of help or want more personal attention where I walk you through it?? Do you not understand the basics but know you want to blog? Contact me. Some bloggers charge $75+ an hour to help you, but for $25 a session you and I will sit down for a few hours and go through ANY questions you might have! If I don't know how to do it, I'll tell you upfront and then I'll either find it out or refer you! 



Did you know I want to design? I'm going to begin working on designing blogs. As soon as that becomes available and I'm reading to take it live, I'll publish that fact on my blog. Unlike other bloggers again I'm going to charge between $50-75 including some fun features! 


Next Week, I will have an additional post from the Growing Your Blog series, to answer questions that you might have in a q & a format as well as provide you with more links. I want all your questions if you have them, anything you might want for your blog even if it's social media questions!
See you next week!

27 comments

  1. Great tips! I'm still pretty new to this whole blogging thing as well and am always looking for ways to better my site. Going to try out the coding you gave at the top of the post with this comment. (Love that by the way.)

    Susan @ Achieving Creative Order

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    1. Susan - It worked! It's a pretty simple code, and you can use it just about anywhere. If you need in other coding tips, just let me know! I love to code (basic) html it gives me a sort of rush. Also if you haven't already check out previous weeks of Growing Your Blog!

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  2. What awesome information! I am having fun with learning to code as well, at least when I am not completley frustrated;) Thanks for the information. Okay, let's try this

    Lisa @ cooking with curls

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    1. Lisa- I'm thinking of holding an online class for basic HTML coding. Please let me know if that's something you'd be interested in. I know that sometimes code just makes you want to rip your hair out, but in the end when it works and sits still for you, it can produce some pretty awesome looking stuff. Thanks for visiting.
      Abbi

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  3. Thanks for the tips!! I am always looking at my site b/c I can't believe I've made it look the way I want it (for now lol). I know nothing about html, but google helps a lot :) I am still trying to add a "Pin It" button to all my pics. I tried one tutorial and it didn't work, so I'm still looking into that!

    Christa @ Mom, Paper, Scissors

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    1. Christa- Well one thing you might want to try is going to Pinterest Goodies it provides you with some of the codes you need. I know you can have a code where all your pictures become a possible pin it. I also had a tutorial in Week four of growing your blog if you're interested. I hope it wasn't my tutorial that didn't work!
      Abbi

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  4. Great tips! When you take your blog designing live, I'd be really interested! I want to have a more custom look for my blog, but I know I have no idea how to design. I can click on the options in Blogger, and that's it! LOL.

    I'm adding you to my Feedly reader :-)

    Sarah @ 79Squared

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    1. Sarah- Thanks so much for visiting. Why don't you email me and we can discuss just a few things that will help you right now.
      Abbi

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  5. Glad I found your site, very informative for a newbie blogger like me. Looking forward to reading and learning from you on how to improve my blog. Thank you!

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    1. Cidy- Thanks so much for visiting. If you go back to the previous weeks there is some information there.
      Abbi

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  6. Visiting from Pin It Monday and pinned your post. Have a great week!

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    1. Gaye- Thanks so much for visiting and pinning.
      Abbi

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    1. Deborah- Thanks. Glad you came to visit :D
      Abbi

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  8. So sorry about your Gram, Abigail! :( Great post though - thanks so much for sharing at the Humble Brag!

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    1. Jocie- Thanks, she actually went peacefully and in her own way, so we can be thankful for that. She got to say goodbye to everyone. Thanks for visiting.
      Abbi

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  9. Just ran across your blog and gonna go back now and read all your 'Growing Your Blog Tips". Thanks so much for sharing. Im now following you from " PICKINandPAINTIN.blogspot.com ". Please come visit me. THANKS.

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    1. Candy- I'm glad you found them helpful. I'll be doing updates as I find things that are important to share :D I'll be checking your blog out today :D You almost had the code 100% you just have to get rid of the spaces between the " and " . Thanks for visiting :D
      Abbi

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    1. Dennis & Andrew- Your welcome. Thanks for visiting. Abbi

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  11. Great tips! I implement the link one today and it works great! Nice blog planner too! Pinned to my blogging board! thanks so much for sharing on Busy Monday!

    A Pinch of Joy/

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    1. Charlene- I'm glad it worked for you!! Thanks for visiting and pinning.
      Abbi @ Seasons of a Homemaker

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  12. Thanks for the series. I have spent a lot of time this week making changes to my blog, reading different post about growing your blog. I have been blogging for over a year but I have few followers and even fewer comments. I made the switch from blogger to Wordpress and while most days I like it Wordpress is harder to customize for free than blogger is. Nice to meet you! I am going to check out more of your blog. :)

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    1. Sheena- One day I'm sure I'll make the switch but I almost would want help with it and I just don't feel pressed to do that yet because things are going so great with my blogger right now!
      Abbi @ Seasons of a Homemaker

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  13. These posts have been so helpful. Thanks a bunch! You have a new subscriber. :)

    The Grass Skirt Blog

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I love reading through your comments and will reply to all comments as time allows me!! Thank you for visiting :D


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