Jennifer Slegg has put together an outstanding list of 25 tips for optimizing your blog for both readers and search engines. If you're already blogging as part of your business (or planning on starting) you simply must read through this list. Even if you only implement one of her suggestions, you'll likely find that you start drawing more traffic and more advertising dollars.
While I'm obviously not going to list all twenty five tips, I will point out a few of my favorites...
1) Dump The Default Template - Looks Count!
I cringe when I see a blog using the "out of the box" Wordpress or MovableType template. Hire a designer to create a unique look for your blog, or at the very least, take advantage of some of the free templates available and customize it a bit with a unique logo or a slight color upgrade.
5) Offer Posts Via Email
Some people just don't get RSS. So cater to them by offering them an option to get your blog posts by email instead. The most popular service to do this automatically is FeedBlitz, although there are also many other tools available to do this.
17) Spread the Link Love
If you are blogging about a story, link up the original story as well as other's commentary on the same topic. When you do so, you will often make those bloggers aware of your blog's existence (if they weren't already) when people click from your blog to theirs. And it also increases the odds that they will either link to you on that story or on something you blog about in the future.
20) Use a Related Posts Plugin
Not only does this make sense to keep readers around for other articles on your site that are related to your current post, but it also allows you to deeplink from a current page on your blog to older entries. Often, older entries get buried several pages deep on an archive page, and this allows you to showcase entries written months or years previously and give those "oldies but goodies" an extra little kick in the search engines. There are several related post plugins available depending on which blog platform you use.
I'm actually planning on implementing a few of her suggestions over on The Lactivist Blog to see if I can spot any up tick in user trends once they're live. She does a nice job of going beyond the standard advice to include some real gems.
Read the full post and see if you can't find one or two things that you can do to improve your blog.
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