This whole month I scoped about blogging and blogging tips, so let’s end the month with a bang and do a major blogging overhaul with my 21-day blog detox! We are approaching the end of the year, and let’s get real… you probably compiled lots of media files, extra widgets and perhaps made up to 50 brand changes in the last year, so it’s time for a clean up. Check out the 21-day blog detox, and there’s a free downloadable checklist at the end! If you want 9 more days of tips, then sign up below to get them sent to your inbox for the complete 30 day Blog Detox challenge.
Day 1. Blog categories
Honestly, you shouldn’t have more than 10 categories, so delete, condense, or broaden your category names. Go to all posts and see which categories can be deleted. (Your posts won’t be deleted, they’ll just become uncategorized.) Determine your best blog categories by surveying your blog ideas library folder when set up your blogging workflow. Check out my post on establishing your batch process here.
Day 2. Reassign posts
Now you may have blog posts that are uncategorized. Go through and assign them to another category.
Day 3. Contact info
Make sure it’s easy to find out where and how to contact you. Do you need to add a form on the side or post your email address on your landing page?
Day 4. Contact form
Make sure your contact form works! Ask a friend to fill out the form and submit it.
Day 5. Contact page
Check your contact page. Make sure you have your email address on this page in addition to the contact form.
Day 6. Link check
Check all your links. Are the links in the navigation bar doing what they should?
Day 7. Widget check
Check your side widgets. Are they all linking to where they are supposed to link to? Are they working from both mobile and desktop?
Day 8. Page title
Go into your site settings and look at your main page title. I recommend including keywords related to your business or business location. I don’t recommend you use your business name in your page title.
Day 9. Smile pretty
Check the photo you’ve uploaded to accompany your bio. Is it time to update your headshots? This could be a good excuse for buying new lipstick or booking a salon appointment. Not that you need it, but mini-makeovers can be energizing!
Day 10. Sharing icons
Is your blog shareable to the top social media platforms? Are the icons easy to find? Do you have a Pin It button? How about Twitter and Google Plus sharing buttons?
Day 11. Comments
Are you using a captcha and making it hard for viewers to comment on your blog? I recommend reevaluating your comment plugins/captchas. The one that has worked for me the most is the Facebook comments plugin.
Day 12. Blog post audit
Look at your top 5 to 10 blog posts of the past year. Save them in an Excel sheet. Make columns for how many social shares and to which platform, how many views on that post, and how many comments. From there, you can analyze which topics you want to do another blog post about. Think about a “Part 2” blog or a continued discussion on the topic.
Day 13. Blog post audit part 2
Check the last 5 to 10 blog posts you published. Fill out same information in Excel columns as you did for your best ones. Do you see any patterns as to why some of these weren’t as popular? Are there things you can tweak in any of the posts, like adding a downloadable PDF, a freebie, or an extra resource? Can you link to other posts or add a prettier graphic?
Day 14. Repurpose
Re-share your top blog posts again. Repurposing blog posts is a great way to get your great content back in the eyes of viewers. You have done your blog post audit, so reshare your best on social media. Check my non-cheesy blog promotion sharing post for more info.
Day 15. Image text
Check your image optimization. Have you been filling out the alt text for your images? If not, then go back to your last 3 blog posts and make sure you’ve added unique alt text by clicking on the pencil icon on the photo. From here, you can type into the alt text field. Remember, alt text should not be repetitive throughout your images.
Day 16. Yoast scores
If you have any blog posts that scored a “poor” on the Yoast scoreboard, then you absolutely need to fix them to get at least an “okay.” Check Yoast’s Page Analysis to see what you can change to get your posts out of the red zone.
Day 17. Yoast scores part 2
Are there any posts marked with yellow that you can improve to try for a green score? Sometimes you can simply add the focus keyword to one of the alt texts of an image file.
Day 18. Clean up plugins
Plugins can weigh down a blog, so see if you can find unused plugins to delete. Also, check to see whether you can deactivate any plugins that you aren’t using much.
Day 19. Related posts
Now that you’ve made some room, add a Related Posts plugin if you don’t have one already. I use YARPP. You need to engage your readers at the end of the post and make it easy for them to stay a little longer and read more interesting posts. Related Posts by Jetpack
Day 20. Tag cleanup
Tags can be your enemy. You shouldn’t be using more than a handful of tags per blog post. Go back through the last 5 blog posts and take out tags that are a slight variation of an existing tag. Also take out vendors and brand names, and use general keyword tags only (tags you will use over and over again in other posts).
Day 21. Tag cleanup part 2
Your tags should never be the same as your categories. In other words, don’t have the same word naming both a category and a tag. You may find yourself backing up and having to rethink which words you want for categories and which you really want for tags. That’s okay… you have all day. You are nearing the end, so don’t give up!
Bonus Tip: Empty out your spam folder even if you are using a plugin that sends your spam directly to the spam folder. Bluehost once took my site down stating that I had not been emptying my folder out so they took me down! Maybe this is not true for all hosting companies but best be safe than sorry.