12 steps guide for testing and improving your blog

You’ve start a site. It looks nice. Have quality content. Visitors are coming… Yet something is missing. It is time for testing your blog.

What has to be tested?

Basically everything, but if that sounds like a too much to do, start with parts You suspect are failing in. My suggestion is to testing your blog every aspect, including technical stuff, content and SEO, but your content and marketing strategy also. After all, doing a complete blog testing will show what you’re missing and help you identify what has to be optimized and improved. Tasks are many but can skip the steps and go directly to the point.

For a start, separate parts to be tested by categories or subjects. Write it down on a piece of paper. This will help You stay organized, quickly see your progress and remaining jobs.

1. Planning

2. Content strategy

3. Marketing strategy

4. Setting a blog

5. Domain redirection

6. Site performance

7. Design

8. Site content

9. SEO

10. Traffic

11. Monetization

12. Analytics

 

Don’t have to do all at once. Identify parts You think you’re not good enough and start testing your site. If choose testing your site completely, above list may not be in that order but it is logical to start with:

1. Planning

Before you started your site You have made some plan what about your site will be and goals you want to achieve. Have registered a domain name related to the subject, choose a design and set your site. But your goals may be set too high and results are not so optimistic as expected. You should analyze and redefine your goals and change your plans.

2. Content strategy

If you ever run a blog you know that you must have a content strategy even a rudimentary tactics for searching topics to write about, writing blog posts, check post length, creating images and video content, optimizing content for SEO, timetable for new posts, schedule, revisions etc.

3. Marketing strategy

Marketing is even more important then content. Content is worthless no matter how good it is if you don’t promote it. Creating a marketing strategy and stick to it, test and expand on new media and abandon nonworking, social media sharing and scheduling posts is basically what has to be done here. It includes social media, free and paid ad campaigns. Test your strategy and performance to achive better results.

4. Setting a blog

Setting a site or blog now days is easier than ever. Register a domain, buy hosting plan (or buy hosting with a domain registration included), install WordPress or some other CMS (Content Management System), choose design (theme or template), install some additional plugins and addons. Set a few more things including redirection and utilize your content strategy – start posting.

5. Domain redirection

Setting your site domain and connecting it correctly to your host in most cases you will not even notice if both are provided by a same company. Not a case if buy a domain from one company and hosting from other. Process is easy, but sometimes may need to make some adjustments. Here comes redirection between WWW and non WWW versions of your domain and HTTP and HTTPS accordingly.

6. Site performance

This is related to all sites and not only blogs. Keep in mind that adding many plugins on your wordpress site, database file size and using too much not optimized graphics will greatly slow your site. Site speed is essential and mainly depends of your hosting company and hosting plan you’ve purchased. Cheaper is not better. You can always upgrade to a better plan or change hosting but please make a backup before even start thinking of doing anything.

7. Design

A blog design is a matter of taste, and should never argue about taste :). Generally blog design should look clean, with fonts and colors that can be read with ease, have a logo incorporated, and tasteful graphics including ad spaces. Overall design should look same on different devices and sizes (desktop monitors and mobile devices – phones and tablets). Using a template makes the things easier and there are many free ones. If you really, really like one may even buy it to get more functionality and support for making changes. From time to time might change the template, but beware that after change made your blog might not display correctly and have to made corrections by yourself.

8. Site content

Blog content is essential. And good quality content that brings value to a visitor who read it is what blogging is all about. Post regularly. Post more often. Use images and video as much as you can, but don’t over use them. Be informative and easy to understand and audience will love your blog posts. From time to time check older posts and make a revision if needed or rewrite it completely.

9. SEO

Search Engine Optimization or SEO is something you should not set and forget. Adding meta title and description is not enough. It doesn’t stop with keywords and keyword phrases. Building links is just a beginning. Have to work on your blog SEO to be listed in search engine result pages (SERP) . Here comes your marketing efforts too. Testing your blog SEO, incorporating new methods and techniques and using them will get you on first page on Google.

10. Traffic

Traffic is what your blog need. More traffic (more visitors) = more leads = more customers = more money. This is the simple formula. Test traffic sources and get new ones. Never loose and drop off if some source is not performing well. Learn to utilize it better. Start with free sources of traffic, improve your blog performance, content and SEO. Try paid traffic. Always analyze your traffic and traffic sources. Do this, work more and more visitors you’ll get.

11. Monetization

Test your ad sizes and ad placements. Try different ad networks. If ads are not performing well change the placement or ad format. Not all ads pays the same. If have your own product, advertise it. It will bring you new customers. Be creative, measure, optimize and grow.

12. Analytics

Testing your blog will give some directions. Analyze the results. Whether it is your strategy, content, SEO, traffic or anything blog related, it can always be improved. Metrics will show you where you’re failing. Improve that parts.

Don’t despair, results will come in time. Need to be stubborn as a mule, work hard and grow constantly.

At the end, here is a simple infographic with a quick insight and few tips:

12 steps guide for testing your blog

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