5 Must Haves for Your Blog

Five Must Haves

It has dawned on me, as I interact with bloggers- new and old alike, that there are always certain aspects of blogs that we must have and that are non negotiable to grow and develop our blogs to that next level.

As I peruse blogs, I have noticed that there are a few things that frustrate me or hinder me from interacting, leaving a comment, or even sharing with the world what awesomeness you have.  You already have the content- that has hooked me, but have you ever wondered why people are not commenting, sharing, or interacting with you?

I have noticed a few things that have thrown up a virtual do not disturb sign… leaving me to think you do not really want to play.  And hey, if that IS what you want, more power to you.  But more times than not, this is not the case. While some of these may seem elementary, it is not!

 

 

Five Must Haves for Your Blog

 

About You Page

Who are you? Where are you from? What started you on this path? No, seriously? If I stumble upon your page, I want to know who you are and why you started blogging!  I read these about you pages and if you look, they are probably one of the highest trafficked pages too! This About me page is a great place to tell the world about YOU- the who, what, when, where, and why of you and your blog. Trust me, we care!

Check out Smashing Magazine for some really cool ideas for your about you page!

Contact Info

OMG.  What if I have an opportunity for you? What if a brand is trying to reach you?  How do we do this? What if someone has a question, concern, or suggestion? Please do not have the person running through facebook, twitter, and wherever just to track you down!  Even if you have your email on the sidebar- this is a step!  And please make sure your email address is updated! You would be surprised!

Social Media Share Buttons

I am sure you have been here. You read an amazing article and you want to share it.  However, there are no buttons!  No “Like,” “Tweet,” or even “Share” buttons!  You are left with two choices; either close the window and go about your life, or rub your head in confusion and copy the URL to share …

Regardless of your platform for blogging, there are tons of plug ins, widgets, and tools that you can easily add to your site to make it social sharing friendly!

Which leads me to…

Comment Friendly Section

Yes.  I said it.  A comment friendly section. I cannot tell you how many times I have left a page without saying anything because I had to sign in five different ways, just to say WOW.  Even you are using Blogger’s platform, you can enable comments to be on your blog page (not in a pop up window with all the other comments).  I love to read what others have to say and know I am not alone.

If you are on WordPress’s platform, I do not want to log into wordpress.com to leave a message.  I am already logged in via my own wordpress… give your readers options!  If they are a guest, let them leave a comment as a guest!

If your blog takes widgets or plugins, there are tools such as Disqus, Intense Debate, Comment Luv, and so many others ones that make it quite enjoyable that helps keep the conversation going…

Subscribe Form

I have read your blog, love your style, and want to read more and stay up to date- YET you haven’t a subscribe form NOR a burned feed.  Add that on top of no Twitter link or Facebook Page- HOW am I to follow you?  Stay In touch?

Blogger Mint shares a few hacks on how to do this for Blog Spot Blogs, but there are quite a few widgets and plugins that do this to make your life easier! Love the Mashable subscribe box?  The Area-51 has a cool hack for Blogger Blogs.  Are you on WordPress and are looking for some fun plugins?  WPMU.org has the mecca of plug ins!

 

Okay. This is just a beginning but def a place to start! Please leave a comment if you think there is another major must that I missed! Sharing is Caring!

  • http://www.missyg.com/ Missy G

    Your blog has some really helpful advice that I’ve been looking for!
    Although, would it be possible to encode html into your links so that they open up into a new tab? I usually right click>open in new tab so that I can easily navigate back to the original blog when there’s more I’d like to see, but I see that the right click function has been disabled. (totally understandable!) Thanks!

  • Juleny

    Thanks so much, I’m going to use these for my blog!

  • alisha

    I recently started my own blog and this is a very helpful tip.

  • http://www.prowessandpearls.blogspot.com/ Michell

    I so agree, I shouldn’t have to search the mountain high to find out about you. If you don’t think you’re worth anyone knowing about you, then why should THEY think you’re worth finding out about? You would think some of these people would visit a blog and think to themselves…EUREKA, I should have that! You’d think, huh? :-) Thanks for sharing!
    Michell @Prowess and Pearls

  • Erin

    Great tips! Implementing ASAP!

  • Jen (nai1chronic1es)

    Thanks for resharing (blm girls). I’m ready to take my blog a little more serious and past the “when I feel like it” hobby so great tips as I prepare to revamp

  • http://fashionismymedicine1.blogspot.com/ atrewatha

    I just started a plus size blog and your comments were extremely helpful. thank you!

  • Chanel

    Thank you so much. I would like to start blogging in the near future and this is some enlightening info

    • http://thecurvyfashionista.mariedenee.com Marie Denee

      Yeah! However I can help! ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/elegant.plus Elegant Plus

    Great tips. But as an “old” quasi-blogger, I think the newcomers may need to realize that sometimes the biggest challenge is old platforms. Not just that they don’t have all the new nifty whistles and bells, but because it is a nightmare to make the conversion to one that does…… and trust me, if you’ve been around long enough, you also realize that new platforms come out all the time, so trying to figure out if and when to make the jump is part of the problem, because it is a BIG DEAL.

    • http://thecurvyfashionista.mariedenee.com Marie Denee

      Ahhh do you mean like WordPress vs. Blogger? Cause yes… that deserves a whole post by itself!

      • http://www.facebook.com/elegant.plus Elegant Plus

        That would be one example. EP pre-dates both, has used both, has been hacked on both, has reverted back to old, original platform to defend from hacks, spammers, etc.

        Social media didn’t start with FB, Twitter, etc. There’s been MySpace, YahooGroups, custom branded chat boards, etc.

        I’ve seen a lot of change in 10 years. :)