Organisation is vital when setting out on a new blogging journey. It is all too easy to overlook some of the most important aspects of blogging while rushing to get content out. That’s why every aspiring blogger needs a blogging checklist.
Your checklist may vary from mine, and my checklist may differ from other larger bloggers in the space but what remains are items that should be on everyone’s list. Here is my opinion on 8 things every blogging checklist needs to have.
1. Set Dates for Publishing and Writing
There are many reasons to be precise when planning a schedule for content, often referred to as a content calendar. They all boil down to one thing, and that is efficiency.
Scheduling and planning can be tedious, I know it and you know it. Setting exact dates for content creation and publishing can go a long way, though. Even if you end up pushing dates around, they need to be more or less set ahead of time.
Building a content calendar and fleshing it out with dates is a great practice to get into when blogging, or really any type of content creation. When you’re aware of when you need to accomplish your goals, it will be much easier to do so when the time comes.
2. Iron Out Your Big Three
This point may be the most important item you put on your blogging checklist. You need to make sure that your big three are effective and tightly written. The big three are your headline, sublime, and metadata.
A good writer should be going over these three things three times each at the bare minimum. This is a practice carried over from copywriting, where these pieces are doing the heavy lifting. It is nearly the same case as your article will sink if it doesn’t have a headline to hook readers, a subline to pull them in, and metadata to keep the whole thing afloat.
Once you are confident in these three, it is much easier to carry out the rest of your writing to-dos successfully.
3. Make Sure the Blog Remains Focused
Remember when you spent all that time making sure that you had a great headline written down? Well, here is where it begins to pay off. One of the most important things to keep in mind when writing for a blog environment is to make sure the article remains focused on the headline.
Your headline has done the amazing task of bringing in viewers; now, you have to make sure you guide them to your call to action at the end. The best way to make sure of this is to keep the blogs focus in check.
4. Keep Format Uniform Throughout the Piece
Formatting can make or break a blog and, in turn, an entire website. If a blog post doesn’t look right or remain visually consistent, readers will pick up on that immediately, even if they don’t realize it themselves.
Don’t be afraid to write down a little style guide for each style of blog. It doesn’t have to be massive; it just has to ensure that when you put something in bold or are changing fonts, you do so evenly and consistently.
When you have an article looking uniform and visually appealing, readers are much more likely to finish the piece and keep coming back. If you need extra help in this area, check out our guide on using HTML to accomplish this.
5. Ensure Proper Keyword Usage
Here is another make or break point when it comes to blogging; SEO. SEO can be quite a scary topic for those new to online writing. It is a lot less complicated than many of those discussing it online make it out to be.
The key here is to keep your keywords in mind when writing your piece, especially when dealing with metadata and image descriptions. These items should have your keyword simply introduced. Giving a search engine every opportunity to find your content is incredibly rewarding in the long term.
Knowing where not to put your keywords is almost as important as knowing where to use them. Using a keyword too much falls into the realm of keyword stuffing and should be avoided at all costs. If this all still seems a little daunting, check out our SEO Best Practices for Blogs.
6. Make Good Use of Links
Effectively using links is what can separate an amateur blog from a professional one. A healthy amount of well-placed links in your content is a great way to ensure interaction, but it is also something Google takes into account considerably.
Linking to your own content is a great way to create synergy amongst your already existing blogs. This practice can keep readers participating in your blog by going from one post to the next. It also increased the likely hood that they will return.
Making sure that you link to outside sources can be a great way to ensure that audiences are well informed. Informing the audience is the main purpose of a blog post, after all.
7. Check Your Ending
Your headline was perfect and pulled your audience in. Your article was persuasive and informative and led that audience to finish your post. You don’t want to have that all be for nothing, do you?
Of course not! That is why you have to solidify your article with a quality call to action at the end. This may look something like a plug for the website or a nudge towards an email list, but it always comes at the end and is always reaching for audience interaction.
The best way to accomplish this is to not be too pushy; after all, they’ve already made it to the end of your post. You’re simply giving them something to do after they finish, and coincidentally that something benefits you.
8. Final Round Copyediting
Lastly, something that can be almost as boring as scheduling is copyediting, specifically the final round of copyediting. You may think that you’ve read it over enough times, but you’d be wrong. One final, careful, and comprehensive pass is still needed.
This is where you go over your newly created blogging checklist and go over each line with a careful eye. It may not be the most exciting part of writing, but it is definitely the most rewarding. This step is better off done earlier in the day after you’ve had the chance to walk away and let the post breathe.
So, which of these tips have you found the most useful? Which of them has made it onto your
personal blogging checklist? Let us know down below.