It can be hard to keep track of what you “need” to have on every post before you hit publish.
Especially if you are newer to blogging and remembering what to do and when isn’t completely second nature yet!
So I am sharing the 16 items that I do before posting and I compiled them into an easy to follow blog post checklist.
If you feel ready to just follow the checklist then feel free to scroll down to the bottom to get just the checklist. There is a JPG and PDF copy for whichever work best for you.
Or if you are newer and want some explanations and tips for each item then keep reading.
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Keywords: the title has it’s own category because in a lot of ways it can be the most important part of getting traffic! So make sure that your title has your keyword (or keywords) in it.
Audience: make sure that your title is clear, catchy, and is something that your audience wants to read. If you are not sure if it is something your audience would want to read then evaluate what posts do well and what those titles are and think about your own opinions. If you Googled something and your title was in the top 3 would you click it or click a different post?
Outline: before you publish your blog post make sure that you are following a logical outline. If you are not sure if your outline is logical and easy to read then try to use ample headers and sub-headers. It will help you learn to create outlines that are easy for people to follow.
Title/ Body/ Conclusion: every blog post needs to have these basic elements. It sounds basic but it’s amazing how easy it is to forget to conclude your post or add a catchy introduction. Also make sure that the title always matches the body of the actual post. Don’t use a title that doesn’t match the content of the post.
Answer Questions: while writing your post and before you publish it make sure that your blog post has a purpose. The most basic purpose and the reason most blog post exist is to answer a question! The question doesn’t need to be in the post but when you are reading over your post look to see if you would answer a question with what you wrote.
Helpful: you can write anything you want on your blog. It is your blog! However, if you are focusing on traffic make sure that your blog posts are providing helpful information to your readers. Think about whether or not your blog post could provide value to your readers.
Grammar: always check your grammar! Blog posts definitely do not need to follow all the proper grammar rules but make sure to check for large grammar errors. Something to check is if your post is a list make sure either each item ends in punctuation or each item doesn’t.
Spelling: unlike casual grammar, spelling should be checked thoroughly. Pretty much every blogging platform should have spell check but if for some reason the one you are using doesn’t then copy and paste into Microsoft Word to check your spelling.
White Space: when you are checking your post before you publish it then make sure there is plenty of white space on your post. White space makes your post easier to read so people read more of it and rumor has it that it helps with your Google SEO as well.
Readability: in addition to the white space make sure that the post is readable. A lot of small things goes into this so if you are struggling with or questioning whether or not your posts are easy to read then go check out: How To Make Your Blog Posts Readable.
Featured/ Info: images are so important for your blog posts. So make sure that you have at minimum a featured image and at least one additional image that ideally has helpful information on it either as a graphic or is a clear, easy to understand picture of what you are writing about.
Pinnable: it is also best to have all of your images be pinnable. So make their ratio 2:3 for most images and if you are making your images be graphics rather than just a picture then use fonts and colors that are Pinterest friendly.
Disclaimer: I am no legal expert but make sure that every post that has ANY affiliate links (or if your sidebar has an affiliate link) has a disclaimer. And remember the disclaimer needs to be before the the first link.
Link: if you are able to add links to your post then it doesn’t hurt to try and monetize! Remember that text links do much better than banners. They are more natural and are typically products or services that you actually are writing about not just throwing a link into the middle of your post.
Meta Description: make sure to add meta descriptions that are keyword rich to your images and the summary for each post before you publish them. This is one of the biggest things you can do to help out your SEO.
Link/Length: before you publish your post make sure to optimize your post for Google by having links to helpful resources, both your own and others. And if you are really focusing on Google SEO try to make every post at least 1000 words.
Feeling lost about SEO? Try reading this book about SEO strategies in 2020!
For a downloadable PDF then check out:
Best of luck with your blogging adventures! If you are are looking for more blogging resources then I recommend checking out these: