Ever wished you had a blog post checklist, so you’d never miss something important?
Well you’re in luck, friendo. Because today, that’s exactly what you’re a-gettin’!
Disclaimer: it doesn’t include evvvverything you could include in your blog posts. The millions of social media-optimized images. The content upgrades. The click-to-tweets.
…Because that would take us 17 hours and I KNOW you don’t have a day and a half to spare.
Instead, let’s focus on the big ticket items. Think of it as your can’t-press-“publish”-without-these-babies hit list.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
Want the nutshell version? Keep reading…
1. A good headline
This ties into the first “2” in my 2x2 headline formula. When I say a “good” headline, I mean a headline that does two things:
Grabs attention, and…
Convinces someone it’s worth their time to keep reading
A headline of ‘baby bear juggling razor blades’ might grab attention. But if your reader doesn’t actually care about baby bears juggling razor blades…they won’t click to read it.
So make sure you have both.
2. Attention-grabbing intro
Once you’ve hooked someone with your headline, use the first 1-3 paragraphs of your blog post to keep stoking the fire you kindled with your headline. Pull them in further and let them know they’re in the right place.
Instead of jumping straight into the meat, warm your readers up. Wine and dine ‘em a little!
Tell a story.
Ask a probing question.
Share a startling fact, stat, or finding.
Draw a parallel between what you’re teaching and a scenario they’re already familiar with.
There are many ways to do it. But every good blog posts needs some proper warming up before launching into…
3. The Body
Not…THAT kind of body.
This is where you have the meat of your blog post. Where you’ll teach or entertain or inspire.
Make sure to keep the body sharp and pointed. It’s easy to go off the rails when you’re talking about something you’re passionate about. (I do it constantly!)
But that’s where editing comes in. Read back your post and make sure you’re staying on message throughout.
Subheads are a great way to keep your blog post focused (and keep the attention of scanners.) Build them into your copy for added punchiness!
One of the goals of any blog post is to drive traffic to your website. So once you’ve got a reader there, you want to make it easy for them to click around within your website.
Whenever there’s a logical place, use interlinks to connect readers with more of your content. Just like I’m doing in this post, make it simple for them to click over to learn more on certain topics.
Interlinks aren’t just about your blog content, either. Don’t forget to link to your work with me page, about page, contact page, etc. whenever appropriate too.
If you haven’t downloaded my blogssary template, this will help you big time when it comes to interlinking! You can download your free copy by clicking riiiight here.
Did you know that articles with images get 94% more views?
I know you don’t want to leave 94% more traffic on the table. So make sure to include at least one graphic in your blog post.
My superfriend Nat at website-superhero.com has an awesome article about calculating the best graphic size for your website. Click to learn the optimum size for your blog graphics.
When it comes to graphics, I say the more, the merrier.
Graphics help to break up your copy.
They add visual spacing and interest.
And they make them way more fun.
I rest my case.
What do you want readers to DO after they’ve finished your post?
Spell it out for them (lit-rally) with ONE super clear CTA at the end of your post.
Not six. Not four. Not even two. Stick with ONE action you want them to take.
Some examples of common blog post CTAs are:
– Leave a comment
– Connect on social media
– Read another blog post
– Forward this to a friend
– Check out your services
– Contact you to set up a discovery call
Whichever CTA you use, you want to make sure it matches the content of your blog post.
It wouldn’t make much sense for me to use a CTA of “check out my Giving Back page!” after reading this article about blog post checklists, right?
But linking to a free blog post checklist download would make sense. (And #spoileralert: that’s what you’re getting at the end of the post!)
7. Grammatical correctness
Grammatical correctness is so crazy important when it comes to your blog.
Nobody’s perfect. We all make mistakes. Especially if you’re a wild fast typer and your fingers can’t quite keep up with the pace of your ideas.
But your blog is a big piece of your brand. If you always have careless typos in your posts, it sends an unprofessional message.
There are few ways to proofread your own copy, if you’ve got the time.
But if you only have ONE minute before you hit “publish,” at least make sure to run your copy through Grammarly.com.
Grammarly is a free proofreading program that is completely magical. You just copy your blog post in and watch as the Grammarly elves point out anything that could be a mistake.
I never submit any piece of copy before running it through Grammarly. It’s well worth the minute or two it takes to catch even the sneakiest of typos!
Putting it all together…
If you want a simple blog post checklist to make sure you never forget these need-to-include items, just click the box below.
It’s also a handy document to pass over to your VA to ensure all the important things are included in each blog post!
join the convo
How do you usually create your blog posts? Do you freestyle it? Or do you use a blog post checklist like this one?
What else do you make sure to include in your blog posts?
What’s your most popular CTA on your blog posts? I’m always looking for clever new tie-ins, so share away!