Are you a blogger, and want some tips to beautify your blog and really ramp up your content? Read on...
I recently attended BritMums Live, a blogging conference for parent bloggers. Held on two days in central London, over 700 people attended sessions on everything from SEO to getting involved in charity work, with some inspirational keynotes from people including Emma Freud and Ben Brooks-Dutton.
There were also lots of useful and practical hints, 'how to's and tips on blogging, from design to the more functional nuts and bolts of the back-end.
So here are some quick blogging tips I picked up, on everything from making your blog look beautiful, to sharing it on social networks:
Blog and photo design tips and tricks
- Spring clean your design, take away any clutter, only have options on the toolbar at the top that are really about you and your blog, and make it look great - the session by Lucy from Capture by Lucy was incredibly useful
- Other tips from Lucy included:
- Always left-align text and never use an italic font (it makes it really difficult to read!)
- If you have some photos that aren’t of the best quality, then make a collage instead
- Use scrap paper and wallpaper as backgrounds for photos to make objects look pretty. We think this is a really great idea for product reviews
- Think about how you use your footer - it’s not a dumping ground! It doesn't have to be complicated, why not put in something simple like contact details?
- And some tips from social media speaker Paul Armstrong...Canva is a fantastic tool for designing layouts for your blog and social networks, with templates to help with everything from headers through to Pinterest graphics
- Picmonkey is also excellent for photo editing and creating blog graphics (and best of all, both are free)
Social sharing; Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, email, Google+...
- Again, from Paul Armstrong...if something you tweet is really successful - with lots of interaction, RTs, comments and clicks - then rephrase and tweet it again
- Don’t be afraid to hold things back; you don’t need to put everything in one tweet. Keep it interesting on all networks
- Tweets with photos in generally get a lot more attention and clicks than those without
- If you follow lots of people on Twitter, use lists to sort out those you really want to hear from or to group into different areas
- Think about using email to share your blog posts, even if it's as simple as putting your latest post in the footer or something a bit more complicated like setting up email lists
- Make sure you remember Google+! It gives you free SEO and allows your posts to rank higher up in search findings (something companies pay lots of money for)
- Pick the networks that really work for you, and focus on those
How to monetise your blog
- If you're interested in monetising your blog, affiliate programmes (where you're given a percentage of sales for products you mention) are a good place to start and we heard about the Etsy programme from another blogger
- It's not an instant cash cow - you need to work on traffic, and have creative and interesting posts to really attract attention
- Not interested in monestising your blog? Not a problem. Blog for you, in whatever way makes you feel comfortable.
- Treat your blog as an extension of yourself, says Lucy from Capture by Lucy. We couldn’t agree more…
Gillian blogs over at A Baby on Board about London life as a new mum, covering everything from baby clothes to breastfeeding. She is pregnant with her second child and lives with her toddler daughter Eliza and husband Alex in south London.