Posted on January 5, 2016

Check Yourself // 8 Weeks To #ImproveYourBlog

blog tips

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Welcome to 8 weeks To #ImproveYourBlog, the first edition.

During this 8 week course, we’ll be focusing on one thing per week. Every Tuesday, they’ll be a new post for you to read, go away and do some tasks that will hopefully enable you to improve your blog.

If you want to see what’s coming up in future posts, then check out the introduction post where I go through each weeks topic.

If you want to get this post sent to you via e-mail, then sign up to the newsletter either in the sidebar or below the post. Alternatively, you can keep up to date with me on Bloglovin‘, Twitter or Pinterest.

  • Week 1: Check Yourself an audit of your blog and social media accounts to make sure everything is up to date and ready for the new year.
  • Week 2: Learning From Othersanalysing other peoples blogs to see how you can improve your own.
  • Week 3: Figuring Out What You Wantbeing clear about your blog goals and what actions you need to take to achieve them.
  • Week 4: Improve Your Images how to improve your blog images, use props, make graphics and where to grab free stock photos. 
  • Week 5: Improve Your Contenttips and tricks on how to improve your writing.
  • Week 6: Blog Consistentlycreating a schedule that works for you and sticking to it.
  • Week 7: Socialiseusing comments and social media to get involved in the community and grow your traffic and social proof. 

Let’s get started, shall we?

improveblog

Week 1: Check Yourself.

Today, we’re going to be going back to basis by making sure our blogs are ready and where we want them to be for the new year. We will do this by checking our pages are up to date, our information is correct and we’re making the most of the space we have.

Read and Update Your About Page.

It wasn’t until someone pointed out that my age was wrong on my About Page that I realised I hadn’t updated it in over a year! Not only was it displaying my age wrong, but I had changed jobs since I last updated my about page too.

So read your about section, make sure it has an updated photo, updated information and is relevant to your current lifestyle and what you’re blogging about.

Most new readers are probably going to visit your about page – so make sure you use this space well. You might want to show off some of your favourite photos, or even link to some of the posts you’re most proud of to direct new readers to your best work.

In my About Page, I link to a post where I spoke about the story behind my blog name and it’s a post that people often Tweet me about today.

Treat your About page as a cover letter for a job – you want to use it to convince people to come back again and again.

Review your Description

Similar to your About page, but not as long – your description can be equally important for keeping people on your blog.

There are many ways you can have a description:

  • A tagline – a sentence usually under your blog header to describe what your blog is about.
  • A description in your sidebar – this is a couple of sentences long that can be used along side a photo to let your readers know a bit more about your blog and your interests.
  • An author description – not all blogs use this – but this is another chance to let your readers learn more about you and is displayed at the bottom of each post.

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Whether you opt to have one, two or all three of these things is up to you – but I would recommend you have a description of yourself and your blog in your sidebar at the very least!

I always enjoy funny descriptions, so if you can be clever and witty in it, it’s always a plus!

Review your pages.

Just like your About Page – review any other pages in your sidebar or tabs, such as a blogroll, PR info or most popular posts – are they up to date? Do they reflect your current situation and can they be improved?

Is your side bar slick?

Sidebars are a great opportunity to direct your readers to social media, your favourite posts, or even other sites.

The thing is – sidebars can get messy really quickly if you keep adding stuff in without taking time to review them. Especially if you keep adding badges and social media widgets in there!

I’ve wrote a whole post on how to keep your sidebar slick, so I won’t go into too much detail on this one, just head over to the post!

Review your social media accounts. 

Check in with your social media accounts to make sure they’re all consistent and up to date.

It’s best practice to have the same profile picture and header across all social media accounts but unless you review this, you might update one and forget about the others! I recently went through a theme change where my blog header changed, but took a while to update my headers on my Facebook and Twitter accounts!

The reason for doing this is to make you more recognisable. People might not remember your blog name or real name – but they’ll likely remember a picture of you or your logo if it keeps popping up!

The tasks:

So to quickly recap, your tasks this week are to:

  • Ensure your About Page is up to date.
  • Review any taglines and descriptions.
  • Check in with any other pages or tabs on your blog.
  • Audit your sidebar, keeping only the essential things in there.
  • Review your social media accounts to make sure it’s consistent.

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I hope you found the first week useful, please do come back and let me know what things you’ve learnt, what you’ve changed and link back to any blog posts so the rest of us can get involved and engaged with you.

Don’t forget to join in the conversation on Twitter using #ImproveYourBlog!

Next Tuesday we’ll be delving into the blogs of other people to see how we can grow from watching what other people are doing well.

See you then!

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47 Comments

  • Reply Darina January 5, 2016 at 9:15 am

    Very useful, thank you for the tips! Looking forward to next week!
    Darina recently posted…Weekend Notes #39My Profile

  • Reply Tori January 5, 2016 at 9:34 am

    Super tips! I definitely need to check my sidebar and work on my about page.

  • Reply Beth May January 5, 2016 at 10:14 am

    So helpful! I’m going to go and update my about me page!xx

    bethmay75.blogspot.co.uk

  • Reply Suze The Luxury Columnist January 5, 2016 at 10:48 am

    Really helpful, Corinne. I’ve been thinking about adding an author description but as I already have similar posts displayed below each post, it might be a bit much?
    Suze The Luxury Columnist recently posted…Barbecoa Jamie Oliver – A Cathedral to Fire and FoodMy Profile

  • Reply Jackie Harrison January 5, 2016 at 11:14 am

    Great tips and is true about the profile some people do not change and age is wrong sometimes location because they move.

  • Reply Lauren Victoria January 5, 2016 at 11:25 am

    I swear you have the best blogging tips haha! I’m so going to be following this 8 week plan and get a start with week 1’s tasks. Thanks for sharing x

  • Reply Imogen January 5, 2016 at 11:28 am

    Hahahaha LOL my about me says I’m 25 when really I’m 26 and I’ll be 27 soon. Definitely going to update that this week
    Imogen recently posted…InstagramMy Profile

  • Reply Sian January 5, 2016 at 11:29 am

    I found this really helpful! I recently did an audit of my about pages etc., but I should probably check my taglines on social media and make sure they’re okay! I can’t wait for week 2! 🙂

  • Reply Nicola January 5, 2016 at 11:37 am

    Great tips so far! I also just went to your About page and read about the story behind your blog name – so funny! As a new reader of your blog I was wondering where you got the name from!
    Looking forward to the next seven weeks of this course 🙂
    Nicola x
    Nicola recently posted…Health and Fitness Tips for WinterMy Profile

  • Reply Mica January 5, 2016 at 11:47 am

    Thanks for these tips! I’ve tweaked my about page a bit but hadn’t thought about adding in favourite posts – I will do that, what a fab idea! 🙂

    I really need to update all my social media profile pics too – I don’t think I have any the same, ha!
    Mica recently posted…Summer Shorts and Stripes: Jeanswest Maternity Denim, Prima Jeans and a Balenciaga RevealMy Profile

  • Reply HanaRosella January 5, 2016 at 1:29 pm

    This was really helpful! I need to update everything properly after my exams are over. Just realised my about me is still blank!

    Hana | http://www.hanarosella.blogspxot.co.uk

  • Reply Konstantina Antoniadou January 5, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    That’s a very helpful and inspiring post!

    http://www.kmeetsstyle.com

  • Reply Noor Unnahar January 5, 2016 at 2:16 pm

    WONDERFUL! You’re so babe, Corinne. I am going to check these things <3
    Noor Unnahar recently posted…An Open Letter to my 2016 SelfMy Profile

  • Reply Jenn January 5, 2016 at 3:03 pm

    Great tips! Thank you sharing these – I will be taking these onboard

    Jenn | jenniferjayne.blogspot.co.uk
    Jenn recently posted…Party Season Featuring Boohoo: Part 3My Profile

  • Reply Shireen L. Platt January 5, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    Crap, you just reminded me that I really need to update my ‘About Page’, it’s more than one year old. Eek! Also great tips on the changing my profile picture to all the same, that is a super helpful tip. Thank you, Corinne!
    Shireen L. Platt recently posted…Clearer, Smoother Skin with Paula’s Choice Resist Anti-AgingMy Profile

  • Reply Anca January 5, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    I’m going to do everything you said on this list, every page needs checking once in a while. I will have to update my pictures too, they are a few months old.
    Anca recently posted…The Best Thing About Being VegetarianMy Profile

  • Reply Liz @distract_me January 5, 2016 at 5:58 pm

    This is such a good idea, I’ll definitely be joining in! I’ve been meaning to update my ‘About Me’ page for ages so this is perfect timing.

    Liz x
    Distract Me Now Please
    Liz @distract_me recently posted…My 16 Best Memories of 2015My Profile

  • Reply Akaleistar January 5, 2016 at 6:00 pm

    Love these tips! Now, to make time to do them… 🙂

  • Reply Sarah January 5, 2016 at 8:05 pm

    I’ll be doing my homework, probably over the weekend! I know I haven’t looked at my about me or contact page in months, if not longer! Eek! I love the idea of an author bio too, I used to have to have one for another site I used and I got a fair amount of traffic back through it – so people DO read them!

    Sarah 🙂
    Saloca in Wonderland
    Sarah recently posted…Saloca Cooks – Creamy Mushroom and White Wine SauceMy Profile

  • Reply Cecilia January 5, 2016 at 10:18 pm

    You have really good information here, I will come back. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply Rowena @ rolala loves January 5, 2016 at 11:58 pm

    Thanks for these helpful tips. I really to need to audit my blog and refresh some of the elements.
    Rowena @ rolala loves recently posted…Style Crush : Alexa ChungMy Profile

  • Reply Gweni Rees-Evans January 6, 2016 at 12:51 am

    I love this! I will definitely be trying to keep up with the 8 week plan (I feel like it’s an exercise plan!). It’s such a fab idea! The about section etc are so important as well but it’s so easy to neglect them. Looking forward to the next instalment! Gweni xxxxx

    http://www.gbeauty.co.uk

  • Reply Rainbow-Rose Blossom January 6, 2016 at 3:10 am

    I’m totally going to enjoy reading this course and thank you so much for sharing all your knowledge with us! <3

    http://rainbow-roseblossom.blogspot.co.nz/

  • Reply Hannah Victoria January 6, 2016 at 4:43 am

    Some great tips here! Will definitely be taking them into account as I’m a newbie in the blogging world.

  • Reply Rachel January 6, 2016 at 11:57 am

    Really great post I keep forgetting simple things like updating my about page. Think I’m going to love this series. 🙂 x
    Rachel recently posted…Top Tips For Revising In JanuaryMy Profile

  • Reply Richel V. January 6, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    So, basically, I have done nothing from this list and I suck. Haha. I’m definitely doing all of those over the weekend. Only on the first week and I already know I’ll learn so much from this free course of yours. Thank you so much, Corinne!
    Richel V. recently posted…For the New Year: Goals for 2016My Profile

  • Reply Hayley F January 6, 2016 at 4:27 pm

    Great tips thankyou, i’m in the process of changing my blog layout so it’s abit all over the place at the moment. I don’t blog about a specific subject. Its usually about craft, craft makes and my life with a disability x

  • Reply Ela January 6, 2016 at 10:38 pm

    About Me page is one of the thing I haven’t paid attention to. I just wrote a short one and now I really need to update it. “Cover Letter for a job” that’s a good way of thinking, however I was really bad at writing cover letters *sigh* xx

    http://www.elabellaworld.com
    Ela recently posted…Herbal Essences Shampoo – Beautiful EndsMy Profile

  • Reply stephanie January 7, 2016 at 1:35 am

    Such a wonderful post! Will stay tuned for the rest!

  • Reply Bea January 7, 2016 at 4:25 am

    EEEEP! Thanks for reminding me to update my about page!! HAHAHA Looking forward to week 2

    BCfactor Blog | bcfactor.blogspot.com

  • Reply Melanie@Toots + Dill January 7, 2016 at 6:04 pm

    Thank you Thank you!

    I will definitely take your tips to heart! =)

  • Reply Mollie McNeice January 7, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    I just recently updated my About Me page because I felt like it wasn’t a great reflection of me. When I first started my blog I kinda rushed it just so I could have something there. So glad I updated it though, even if it can still be improved upon in the future! I’m going to go through all my media accounts and see if all my headers are the same because I have a feeling they aren’t haha! So thank you for reminding me with post. 🙂

    Mollie Victoria Beauty | Blog

  • Reply Christie January 7, 2016 at 11:30 pm

    Ugh I am so down for these posts. You are a gem, thank you! xx
    Christie recently posted…Do You Believe In Ghosts?My Profile

  • Reply Elizabeth Rebecca January 8, 2016 at 6:08 pm

    I noticed my about page was still listing me as a teacher – oops – gave that up 7 months ago haha!

    http://lizziedailyblog.blogspot.co.uk/
    Elizabeth Rebecca recently posted…Fitness Friday #1My Profile

  • Reply Eclectic Hamilton January 8, 2016 at 7:28 pm

    So wonderful useful!
    I love it. A big THANK YOU.
    I have now a new about me page and a tagline!

    Greetings & Love
    Ines

  • Reply kezzie January 9, 2016 at 10:35 am

    Yes, I.never got around to the About page!
    kezzie recently posted…On contemplating one’s slippersMy Profile

  • Reply Lucy Furneaux January 9, 2016 at 7:31 pm

    Thanks so much for this great post! I’ve been blogging for over three years but only recently have I been making a real effort when it comes to outreach and consistency, so I’m really looking forward to following this series and picking up all your tips and advice. I also wanted to wish your luck with your line-a-day diary – I’ve had the blue one for three years now and although I’ve not written in it every day, it’s still an amazing keepsake to look back on!
    Lx
    http://lucyeyf.co.uk

  • Reply Andriea January 12, 2016 at 10:50 am

    Thanks so much for these tips! I have literally been working around the clock on my sit and finally got to a place where I could slow down. And then I read this…lol…back to work I go.

  • Reply Lucy January 13, 2016 at 9:20 am

    As always really useful looking forward to this series of posts. My about me definitely needs to be updated Lucy x
    Lucy recently posted…My Little BoxMy Profile

  • Reply Ami January 13, 2016 at 9:07 pm

    Ahh, how am I a week behind!
    My about page is something I need to work on, I never even thought about putting links to my best posts within the about me description. Great idea! Off to read week 2’s post 🙂

    Ami x
    Ami recently posted…Sugar Sands Longhoughton, NorthumberlandMy Profile

  • Reply The Weekend Reading List – The Blog Improval Edit – Fashion, Family & the Country January 15, 2016 at 10:11 pm

    […] Skinnedcartree’s “8 weeks to #improve your blog” […]

  • Reply Melody January 19, 2016 at 4:15 pm

    You made me realize my about me is out date.Now I have homework for this week.I will try to figure out how to write a non-boring one thanks. http://sheismelrose.net/

  • Reply A good start into the weekend - 3 tips for you! - New Solid Decoration February 12, 2016 at 10:50 am

    […] In week 1 was the topic: ” check Yourself” […]

  • Reply Billie February 27, 2016 at 9:21 am

    Sounds really dumb, but I have no idea how to put an about me in the side bar! I’m going to have to give up on this!

  • Reply Haze June 18, 2016 at 6:14 pm

    I have only recently found this series, after stumbling across you on twitter, but I love it and as a new blogger find it so helpful!

  • Reply Avianne Robinson July 12, 2016 at 3:02 am

    I am excited to join on the challenge even though I think it’s already officially ended. I am the absolute worst at updating things. My pages and social media are in need of serious love.

  • Reply Natalie Martinez February 18, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    Thanks for the post!
    Very helpful

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