You have written a great post for your website, you hit the publish button, now what? If you think you have finished, you are wrong. You have barely begun and there are still many tasks to perform.
It could be said that the easy part is over and once a post is published to your site, then comes all the hard work. What work? Getting people to visit your website or blog and read it for a start!
Publishing posts on WordPress is really easy and the biggest problem that many people have is getting visitors to their website. There are many tasks to perform once a post is published and the ones covered below will help you to get your posts in front of eyeballs.
In part 4 of this series of articles let’s take a look at the tasks you need to do after hitting the Publish button. These WordPress tips apply just as well to other blogging platforms.
Check your post
It is strange, but you can check your writing carefully before you publish it, but the next day, sometimes even just one minute after clicking the Publish button you see typing slips, missing words and other typing slips. View the post live on the site, not in the editor, and read it through slowly. You may be surprised to find errors and then you must return to the editor and fix them.
Posts look different in the editor than for real on the site, and you may find that there are large blocks of text that would be better broken up into shorter paragraphs or that need an image or subheading.
Look at posts using a phone because what may look like a reasonable paragraph length on a computer with a big screen may fill a phone screen. Break up big chunks of text.
The Preview link in the top right corner of the WordPress editor is very useful for seeing the post before publishing it and for proofreading.
Check your post after publishing too, don’t rely solely on the preview function.
Check for comments
Hopefully people will see your post and comment on it. Check for new comments every day and reply to them if necessary. A comment may simply say ‘Thanks’ and no reply from you is necessary.
However, some comments are opportunities to engage your readers in discussion, expand on topics covered in the post and so on. A healthy and active discussion is great for boosting visitors and those that post comments may return to see the replies, boosting page views.
Comment forms attract spammers like bees to a honeypot and you must somehow block spammers and junk comments. See How to block spam comments on your website.
If you have built up an email subscriber list, tell them about the latest posts on your website – a what’s new email. This may be a single sentence, a paragraph or whole story. Tell them how unmissable and great the post is.
Use a service like Benchmark Email, MailChimp, Sendinblue, MailerLite or one of the many others – there are dozens of them. Many offer free accounts are good to start with and work fine until your subscriber list reaches 1,000 or more.
Interact with bloggers and forums
Look for other blogs, websites and forums and post insightful and interesting comments on them. You may be allowed to directly post a backlink to your web post, but not always. If the site requires registration, such as a forum, you may be able to include your site’s URL in your user profile. If you write interesting comments, people may check out your profile and then visit your site, increasing traffic.
It takes a long time, but if people regularly see your name in comments, forums and discussion sites, they may come to associate it with being an expert in your niche. This can help when you post links and for gaining traffic.
Refresh your post
This time next year your post may be out of date, maybe not completely, but bits of it might. Take a close look at old posts and refresh them by rewriting a paragraph or two, adding an extra paragraph containing more information, add a new image or replace an old one.
This is not only good for readers, but for search engines too and they notice when you refresh old articles. It helps to maintain their position in search rankings. The benefits of refreshing and updating old posts should not be underestimated. Search engines love it.
Promote, promote promote
A common mistake that many people make when building a blog or website, is thinking that all they have to do is to create posts and people will come. They might, eventually, but it could take months. If you want traffic quickly you need to promote, promote, promote.
Some people say that you should spend 25% of your time creating content and 75% promoting it. Yes you can do that, but it is not a good idea to rely on promotion alone to get visitors because what happens when you stop promoting? Visitor numbers can plummet. Quality content produces stable, consistent long term traffic, but some promotion early on really helps to get started.
If you are not promoting your site and your content then how will people find it? You must promote it as much as you can to get it in front of eyeballs.
This is particularly hard at first when you do not have a lot of content, but it is something you have to work at. Progress may be slow at first, but every time you promote your site or content, you will gain a few extra visitors.
Sometimes you get help and when you promote your site, such as by sharing a link on social media, someone may share it themselves. Your share can be reshared by others who then reshare it with their network and so on.
Do not try to saturate the web with links to your latest post because this will simply trigger spam filters everywhere. You will end up with less visibility and not more.
Create a long term promotion schedule. This will be different for each place you promote your content. You might post a link to your post weekly on Twitter, monthly on Facebook and only occasionally on LinkedIn or other places.
Share a link on social media and make a note in your diary, or use a to-do scheduler, to share the link again in two week’s time or a month.
- Check your post. Seeing it on your site is different to editing it and you may spot typing slips and other problems you missed
- Check for comments. Check regularly for comments and take every opportunity to respond to them and engage with readers
- Email subscribers. If you have built up an email list, and you should, email people and tell them about the new post
- Interact in forums. Find forums in your niche and post comments. Become known as an expert in your field
- Promote, promote, promote. Share your links everywhere you can – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and so on
- Repeat. Do this all over again a month or two later – check the post and add a bit more, share the link, remind email subscribers what they missed