Before you launch your blog onto the great big internet take a minute to check the steps below. Making sure everything is in order will help you to successfully and smoothly launch your new blog and maximize its chances of being successful.
This list will give you the main points that you should check before allowing your blog to go live:
Make a blog Content Plan before your launch
Much as I am sure that you’re tired of hearing ‘content is king’ (I know I am!), it didn’t make it any less true. Better content will rank better and provide you with more traffic.
So make a content plan. Use a spreadsheet to list out ideas and headings and assemble them into some sort of order to keep the ideas rolling and your content fresh.
Do blog SEO before you launch
Once you have your blog ready to launch and have added some content you need to turn your attention to SEO or Search Engine Optimization. Your site will not rank without it and the better you can do it the higher your site should feature in search results.
A good plugin like Yoast will walk you through the steps and you need to think about focus keywords and meta descriptions for each blog post that you create.
This is where you find out that blogging isn’t just about writing, there is a whole backroom process that needs to take place before content goes live. If you really can’t get to grips with SEO then find someone to handle it for you from sites like Fiverr or Upwork
Now that your site is live and you are adding a regular amount of content to it you will need somewhere to share your posts and drive more traffic to your website. This is where social media comes in.
You can use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and other platforms to share your content and build your audience. Design custom graphics where possible and research hashtags.
Social Media Management can become time-consuming so you may want to invest in a content calendar or sharing tool to help you manage your accounts.
It is also worth considering which social accounts you want to use and set up just one or two at first.
Set up Google Analytics and Search Console
To keep an eye on traffic and the overall site health of your new blog Google has provided two extremely useful tools.
Connect your site to Google Analytics to monitor the amount of traffic you are getting, and the flow of visitors through your site and identify the areas that are performing well or poorly.
It’s there one post that attracts much more attention than others? Maybe you can model future posts on this format and gain even more visitors.
Search Console will keep an eye on your site, how it ranks in search, and tells you of any crawl errors and other issues.
The combination of these two tools will allow you to monitor and drill down on any issues right from the time you launch your blog.
Having people visit your site is great, but having them come back is even better. Think about setting up an email opt-in form. You’ve seen them, those pop-ups and slide-ins that are all designed to get your email address.
Sometimes offering a free gift or download to entice you to part with your information. There are a ton of plugins that you can use to help you with this and you might want to think about integrating your sign up forms with an email management tool like MailChimp.
This will make it easy to send newsletters and alerts to your followers. Email marketing is still a highly successful selling method and a great way to promote affiliate links.
Logos and Graphics
Eye-catching catching graphics and logos will make your site and posts more visually appealing to users. Custom design where possible with high-quality images (note: be careful of using too many and compress images where you can so you don’t slow down your site load speed too much).
Custom graphics that you design can then also be used to post on your social media accounts so it’s well worth the time and money spent creating your images before you launch your blog.
You can share posts on social media and promote your site, but did you know that your followers can do that too? Make it easy for them by installing a sharing plugin.
This handy tool will list a set of links at the end of your posts that the visitor can use to share your post to their own social media sites. Great for expanding your reach.
Plugins will typically enable you to select and customize the accounts that your posts can be shared. They normally include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest along with sites like Tumblr, Medium, Digg and Reddit.
Devise a Growth Strategy
When you launch your blog you will learn that getting daily visitors is great, but now you need to expand on that and keep it going.
This is where you need a growth strategy; a plan or a roadmap to layout your overarching goals and targets and the steps you will take to achieve them.
Maybe you decide to post and share a number of articles on your site and promote them through specific channels, or perhaps you have certain monetization steps in mind, or maybe you want to target specific keyword groups.
Whatever your goals you need to define them and map out the ways you will reach them. This will help you to reach your goals successfully.
Decide how to Monetize prior to your blog launch
There are many ways to monetize your website. Ads, affiliate links, or selling products to name a few. It’s important to decide how you will make money from your website or blog.
If you are not based around selling products particularly you can always earn a bit of money from advertising.
Google Adsense is a great place to start and places ads strategically on your website and periodically throughout your blog posts. Visitors see and click the area and you get paid.
It’s easy to set up and after that, it’s a relatively automated process with Adsense doing its thing and you collecting the benefits.
There’s no guaranteed method for overnight success when you first launch your blog or website but making sure that everything is on point as much as possible will give you a great start.
Many bloggers lose interest and give up after a few months which is why a content strategy and growth plan are important. These two items will help to keep you productive until you start to see results.
What have you found that helps you make your blog more successful?