Checklist to Create a Better Blog Post
Are you looking for ways to create a better blog post every time? Do you need an A+ checklist?
I am in Australia with my friend Carol, the Eternal Traveller. Our first afternoon together we sat in our Airbnb apartment in downtown Melbourne doing what bloggers love to do. We compared notes about blogging. I wanted a simple blog checklist for bloggers who were not interested in professional content writing.
We came up with seven chronological steps you can take to write a better blog post.
Start with Photos
Download your photos from your camera and smart phone. Choose only the ones that you will use in your post. Carol only uses the “best of the bunch” if she takes many photos of the same thing. She processes photos by reducing the size, cropping or adding a filter.
There are many free services including Google and Canva that make this task easy. Microsoft has a free program that Carol uses. I use Photoshop Elements to process many photos at the same time and give them a name rather than a number. Even though I add a watermark with my name on it, Carol quit doing that a year ago. If I upload photos to Canva it looks better if I don’t have my name on them.
She said, “The photos are not printable quality if you have resized them.”
Once they are ready, open your new post and upload photos to the post. Even then, Carol says you might not use them all.
Ready to Write
Copy and paste your research links and facts into your draft post or on a journal page to refer to as you write. You are going to erase these notes before you publish. Check any photo or blog challenges that might fit the post you intend to write. Consider writing in a series. Create your rough draft.
Edit, Edit, Edit, Edit, Edit
To create a better blog post edit once for “show don’t tell.” Eliminate unnecessary words like “really” and “just.” Check sentence structure and tense. Keep tense the same within paragraphs. Reading your post out loud helps.
Carol inserts links to past posts she’s written if they fit the text she is currently writing. She keeps another tab open to her blog to easily find those links. I open a tab to my blogging journal in Google Docs. In it, I list links by topics, from both my blogs and other bloggers’ posts. I also add links to Wikipedia or other informational articles I have read on the internet if they have additional interesting information.
Don’t forget to eliminate notes you added to your draft before you publish.
Add Maps, Charts, and Infographics
Some professional bloggers write a better blog post by creating infographics like word maps or charts. Charts work well for posting statistics. Amateur bloggers can do the same for added effect. It takes time, but if you don’t post every day, you have time to do this. Google maps are great for travel blogs.
Check Preview for Layout
Sometimes extra spaces or lines appear after you edit. If these are stubborn to remove, click from the visual to the text tab and erase ” ” which means “return.” Carol rereads her preview page many times before publishing. She never publishes the same day as she writes.
I am afraid I need to read my posts more. No matter how many times I’ve read my post, I usually press publish too soon. The next thing you know Vince says, “You forgot a period,” or something equally silly. Then I have to update my post. Sometimes after I have updated something I published, I click on Facebook, and there is my stupid error. STILL! Or my post is perfect, but I forgot to give it a title.
Schedule Your Post
You can leave your post in draft form until you are ready to post it. When I do that, I tend to read it again and spend another hour rewriting or adding text. Then I need to proofread carefully again. I prefer to schedule the post for a specific day. Even though non-professional bloggers are not tied usually tied to a specific day to post, it does help a blogger’s traffic to post consistently.
Pro bloggers have pages of checklists, which are very thorough but apply primarily to self-hosted blogs. This simple checklist works for all bloggers. Carol says she spends about eight to ten hours per each 500-word post. She spends most of her time editing, and I have yet to find an error in her work. I am going to keep looking, though! 🙂
It takes me about the same amount of time to publish a post. One spammer told me when I started blogging, “Your post is rife with errors.” I am more careful now, but I still find errors.
- Seven Tips for Using Photos in Your Blog
- How to Quit the Struggle Scheduling Blog Posts
- 15 Best Time Hacks for Better Blogging
- Better Blogging with Photography
Do you have a list you use to make sure your blog posts is ready to publish? If not, consider writing one and sending us the link in the comment section. 🙂