Blogging 101—Settings, Part 2

I’m using Blogger as my resource for the order in which I talk about settings. I am only discussing the ones that directly effect using your blog as a marketing tool for your writing. In Blogger, many of these settings have a question mark beside them that you can click on for more info. If you use a blog host other than Blogger, it probably has similar settings, but they might call them something else.

Add your Blog to our listings?
Yes, you want to do this. A reader may find you by browsing Bloggers list.

Show Email Post links? Yes. This allows readers to easily e-mail your blog to their friends, making it more likely for them to come read other posts on your site. (If you're worried about someone stealing your stuff, put a copyright notice at the top and/or bottom of every post.)

Show # posts/days:
Set this to at least 7. Visitors to your blog are a lot more likely to scroll down to read additional posts than they are to click a link.

Convert line breaks: Yes. This helps keep your post from running all together. In fact, do a double return at the end of each paragraph. This makes it nice and clean and easy to read.

Yes. Invite comments to your blog. People like to share their opinions. In fact, one of the best things that can happen is when your readers start a conversation between themselves in your comments section. That means they’re coming back, over and over again.

Who Can Comment? Unless you’re having a real problem with vicious posters, set this to allow everyone the ability to comment. You want to invite participation on your blog, not exclude people.

Backlinks: This allows people to link back to your blog from their blog. You very definitely want this; it increases your sphere of influence. Readers are much more likely to find your blog through a backlink than they are by simply surfing the Internet.

Show comments in a popup window? Yes. If a reader has to keep clicking to return to the main page, they will stop.

Enable comment moderation? Again, unless you are having trouble with vicious or nasty posters, this is not necessary. People want to see their comments posted immediately, not wait several days for you to check your e-mail, notice there’s a comment waiting, and approve it.

Show word verification for comments? Start your blog with this turned off. It’s annoying to have to type this stuff in and some people will not go to the trouble. If you start having problems with spammers, then you can turn it on.

Show profile images on comments? Yes. It’s fun to see the photos or icons that people use to represent themselves.

ARCHIVING Enable Post Pages? Post Pages give each of your posts their own unique web page, in addition to appearing on your blog's front page.* YES! This makes it much easier for people to include links to a specific post on your blog within their blog. You want this.
*quoted from Blogger

You want people to subscribe to a feed from your site. This makes it much easier for them to see when you’ve added something new and they are much more likely to come back when you do.

Also, it lets people put your site feed on their blog, for example, in the sidebar. That allows visitors to their blog to see the title and/or first sentence of your newest post. This is a good thing.

I have three more posts about blogging and then I'm done. Tomorrow I'll do Settings, Part 3, and talk about templates. Next I'll talk about driving readers to your site. Last I'll answer the questions I've received that don't fall into these categories.

1 comment:

Stephanie Humphreys said...

Thank you for these blogging articles. They are extremely helpful.