I saw a tweet from fellow blogger Jo Linsdell about doing a Blog Audit Challenge, and I thought I should definitely join in to see what I can do help improve my blog. So I followed her challenge, and decided to share a summary of how I went through her blog audit! For Jo’s full details and excellent tips, check out her website here!
So, every Saturday for eight weeks, Jo set up a blog post with a task to complete. Here is how I tackled each task.
Week 1 Task: On-Going
- Read your blog. Pretend you are a visitor and view it in all the ways possible (mobile, laptop, tablet, etc). Make notes about what you like and don’t like. What can you improve? To read the full post, click here.
Update information pages – about, legal disclaimers
- Update graphics
- Check links in posts
- Update sidebar
- Media kit & press page
- Research keywords and tags
I went through my blog and while checking thee above, noted the following things:
- I needed to update my about page, as well as add legal disclaimers.
- I needed to update graphics, as I have many posts without any images, and ideally, I wanted to add graphics that are solely my own images.
- I needed to research a media kit & press page and decide if that was something I necessarily needed.
- When doing this research, I found a great explanation of how to compose a media kit.
- Once I read through the research, I decided that while I can compile elements of the media kit, I don’t need a published one just yet.
- Challenges and Giveaways page seems necessary, as well as stating those policies.
- Though not necessary, I wanted to add a few additional resources specific to book blogging, like a blogger directory and a terms guide.
Week 2 Task: Completed
- Make sure you have up to date legal disclaimers up on your website. To read the full post, click here.
I had absolutely no disclaimers up, so I was glad Jo tackled this subject in her second week. I complied my disclaimer using Jo’s example and others I found online while doing my research. Here are links to those sample disclaimers:
Week 3 Task: Completed
- Create/ Update your About Page. To read the full post, click here.
I needed to update my about page, but not too much. I made it a little more generic, broke down the about into multiple sections instead of one large page, and cleaned up a few minor things.
Week 4 Task: Completed
- Take a look at the content of your Side Bar and Footer, and optimize them for better results in focus with the main goals of your site. To read the full post click here.
I have a pretty strong side bar (in my opinion), and theme of my blog didn’t support a footer, so I lucked out there, until I decided to change the theme, haha. Thankfully, the footer was pretty simple! Jo broke down both items and what they should include as well as additional items your could include, depending on your brand, so it still gave me some things to mull over for the future.
Week 5 Task: Completed
- Make sure you have a way to be contacted on your website. To read the full post, click here.
I remedied this problem a while ago when I tried to contact someone about a giveaway, and could NOT find their contact information. Upon doing so, I realized I didn’t have a means of contact either. Thankfully, WordPress has a really easy plugin, so that’s how I set up my contact page. However, Jo mentioned some great ways to personalize the basic contact page, so I added a few of her suggestions.
Week 6 Task: On-Going
- Make sure new posts are optimized with keywords and SEOs in the headlines and blog posts. Check older posts and make sure they include keywords. Make edits where needed.
- Work on your comments section, and reply to every comment left on your blog. Try to write long comments that include your keywords. To read the full post, click here.
Seeing this task was great, because this is something I had already been working on while I update my old posts with graphics and links. So this week’s task was like finding out I had already done the homework! However, reading Jo’s post gave me better insight on why keywords are important, and definitely worth reading.
I am also adamant about commenting back to those of you who take the time to chat with me! I love hearing your thoughts about my posts, what you do and don’t like about the book reviews, etc. So, that was something from Jo’s recommendations that I could easily say DONE!
Week 7 Task: On-Going
- Update graphics for consistent branding, and add at least one image per blog post. To read the full post, click here.
This has been an ongoing project for me, so I’m glad that Jo added this to her list of topics to tackle. I am working on some specific graphics using the Over app (no, that’s not an affiliate link, but I just really love that app!) and have gone through all my old posts to add images of their appropriate books, etc. Things are coming along in this department, but I’ve still got a ways to go before I feel like it’ll look professional. I’m not sure what direction to go with branding images, so I’ll be circling back to this.
Week 8 Task: On-Going
- Add more manual and self-created backlinks, and research natural backlinks for your blog. To read the full post, click here.
Another ongoing project! I actually didn’t know what backlinks were, so I learned something new from Jo’s post. I am constantly adding internal links to my blog posts, but I really haven’t thought about backlinks. Jo explains that manual backlinks are where you ask other bloggers to link to your content that is relevant to theirs, and self created are ones that you can add to your signature for forums and comments. It’s definitely something I hadn’t considered before, but it could be a great way to direct more traffic to my blog without too much additional effort!
With that being said, if anyone wants to link up, let me know!!
So there you have it! Hopefully this explains all changes you might have noticed throughout the blog, and hopefully the additional pages will be useful! I definitely enjoyed the challenge and think it helped me focus on some much needed improvements. Thank you Jo for creating such a fun challenge!
Did any of you decide to join the challenge? What did you think? I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!