Welcome back! If you haven’t already started blogging or you’d like to reassess your blog, this post will help you. I’ll talk about the most important aspects of a good blogging website that you can monetize. If you’re looking to blog just for yourself, the only use of this post for you will be to see what gives us headaches during a blogging journey.
**This post may contain affiliate links and I may earn a small commission when you click on the links at no additional cost to you. You can read my full disclaimer here
First and foremost – the platform. You can’t blog if you don’t have a fitting Content Management System (CMS) platform to deliver your content – blog posts – on Google. It can be WordPress, Wix, Blogger, whatever you see fit.
The second thing you’ll need are blog posts.
No point in blogging without writing those, right? You’ll probably sort them in categories and make them visible on your home page or anywhere else on the website if you’re doing e-commerce. Now that you have these two covered and your website is up, it’s time to expand the whole blogging idea and offer something more to your visitors. ALSO READ: Top 5 Personal Traits of a Blogger
Having a visible menu in the upper fold of your website helps your visitors to manage surfing through your blog easier and find what they’re looking for. Once you set up your blog, you only have a home page and a blog post page. But there’s more to include.
What more can you place on pages and in a Menu of your blog?
- About – if you’re looking to get clients via your blog, include this page and make it become your CV.
- Contact me – this way, people will know how to reach you. Set up your email, as well as a simple contact box. Scatter the contact me boxes and subscription boxes all over the blog. Sometimes people are lazy to look for it.
- Work with me/Hire me – this is where you’re free to promote yourself as much as you like and want. Place your portfolio and/or places where you’re featured/mentioned.
- Landing pages – these are good if you have any products to showcase. But have in mind that landing pages can be made for webinars and other events. You can make a landing page per product or group the products and services on one. Landing pages are also important if you plan to find affiliates to sell your product.
- Store – this is a place where your visitors can purchase from you directly. A good landing page will bring your customers to your shop page, where they’ll explore the products and shop. There are many ways to set up a store on many different platforms.
- Freebies page – this page can contain the stuff you’d like to give for free, usually in exchange for an e-mail subscription.
ALSO READ: 6 Tools You Need to Start a Blog
Affiliate notice and other compliance can be placed on a sub-page, they don’t necessarily need to be on the menu. BUT if you do affiliate marketing, like I do Book Depository and ShareASale you are obliged to notify the reader of every blog post that has affiliate links.
You also must notify your visitors if any banner on your blog is affiliate. Cookie alert is that little popup that notifies your users about the ways you store the cookies on your website. This is not necessary for every country, but you’ll want to make sure you set those up because you never know where your visitors will come from in the future.
When you start blogging, you’ll start thinking of monetization options and naturally, you’ll think of Google Adsense. It’s not the only ad provider out there, it may not be the best, so you do your research and make sure to find the best for you. A domain name is important because you’ll own your website, it’ll be eligible for ad monetization and you’ll look more professional overall. (I heard a few times that Blogger allows Adsense with free domain, but I didn’t use it so I’m unsure if this is correct.)
SSL certificate is needed if you’re collecting any data. It’s basically a way to encrypt the personal information that moves on your website. If you have it, your website’s URL will show as httpS. If you don’t, it remains HTTP. Plus, Google looks to drop the websites that don’t have it, so it’s best to acquire one.
Social share buttons and your social links are just a detail, but they mean a lot once you get the audience and following. Mobile version of your website – this is especially important because more than 50% of users are on their phones all the time, browsing the web. Having a good mobile-optimized website also helps rank higher on Google. Optional:
- Logo, since it helps with branding.
- The tagline, since it briefly explains what you’re website is about.
- RSS feed, since some users prefer to subscribe to it.
- Members place, such as forums, are nice to have if you have a big community.
- Featured posts are a nice way to showcase your best writings instantly.
- Promotional kits – these can be made into PDFs and attached so that your visitors can download them. Can be placed on the Hire me and Contact me page with description of what they are.
- Cool custom fonts, background images, colors. You should pay attention and track to see if any of these slows down your website. If it does, remove it.
That’d be it for now, for the front-end of your blog. Setting up these little parts of your blog can mean a lot in the long run later. You won’t miss opportunities for sponsorship, for example.
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