Jennifer Jain is mum of two and a SAHM after being made redundant. She turned to blogging and now Jennifer’s Little World is a haven of fabulous ideas including homemade toys, felt crafts and her passion for travel. Here she gives a timely reminder of how to keep our blog ship shape and give it a good old spring clean.
The weather might not agree, but according to the calendar at least it’s officially spring, and so what better time to think about doing some spring cleaning on your blog? Here are some ideas to get you started!
The most important thing to do is to make sure that your blog is backed up. You can find full instructions on how to back up your blog here. Be sure to save a copy not only to your local hard drive but also to a second location – perhaps an external hard drive or simply e-mail the file to yourself. Don’t forget to make sure that all your images are backed up too, and of course a backup shouldn’t just be a one off; make sure that you are remembering to back up regularly.
Next it’s a good idea to check for any broken links on your blog – links to other websites or images that are no longer available. Broken links will have a negative impact on your blog’s rankings with search engines, and will also frustrate readers. I blog with Blogger and I use a free online Broken Link Checker. If you use WordPress then plugins are available to check for broken links. It might take a bit of time to fix all your links at first, especially if you’ve been blogging for a little while, but if you can get into the habit of running regular checks for broken links then it should only take a few minutes every month or so.
Then it’s time to take a look back through your archives. If you’re anything like me, you probably spent a great deal of time at the beginning of your blogging journey publishing finely crafted posts which were read by…your Mum. Why not revisit some of those gems and share them with all the followers that you have gained since they were published – perhaps on Twitter or your Facebook and Google+ pages.
While you are going through old posts, take another look at them with fresh eyes. To help with search engine visibility, check that they include relevant keywords and that images are correctly tagged. If you have written subsequent posts on the same subject you might want to consider updating old posts with links to them. If you write frequently about the same topics you could pull them together in a new roundup post, or consider grouping them together on a dedicated page on your homepage to make them easy to find.
Also have a sort through the posts that are in your drafts folder. Perhaps you have forgotten about some that only need a few tweaks to be ready for publication, or perhaps there are some which can be deleted now that a particular moment has passed.
Finally have a look at your sidebars. Are all the blogs in your blog roll still active, and have you started following new blogs recently that you’d like to include? Are all your badges still relevant, or are you displaying badges for awards which have finished or for linkies which are no longer active?
I hope that I’ve given you some ideas for how to give your blog a bit of a spring clean. There must be lots of other ways you can think of to give your blog an overhaul – I would love to hear about them in the comments!
Jennifer Jain is a Mum to two and lives in West Sussex. She is still adjusting to life as a stay at home Mum after redundancy, but loves having the time to spend with her little ones. She blogs at Jennifer’s Little World about parenting, craft and travel. You can chat with Jennifer on Twitter Facebook and Google +