If you’re at all like me, it’s easy to let your blog get a little messy. Blog Post A says you have to include these 5 items in your sidebar while Blog Post B says you need a completely different 5. So what do we do? Add all the things!!
While plugins, widgets, links, and pictures can be a lot of fun it’s important that we don’t let ourselves go overboard.
Why You Should Clean Up Your Blog
A clean blog can be beneficial to both you and your readers.
As a reader, it’s confusing to land on a blog and see plugins, widgets, and clickable items everywhere. How do I know where to focus? Where will I find the most value?
Narrowing down what you include on your site is great in helping you to define your goals. You’ll find yourself asking questions like, “Do I want that ad there or should I get rid of that to bring more attention to my email opt-in?”
Being intentional about what you include on your blog will give your readers clear direction and help them discover the content that you want them to. (Tweet that)
Do Some Cleanup
Now that you know why having a clean and focused blog is important you can get started with your cleanup. (Don’t worry, it’s way easier than cleaning your house)
Start by making a list of all the places on your site that you need to consider. Some places you might want to consider cleaning up are:
- About page
- Products/Services page
- Contact page
- Resources page
- Blog posts
Now go through each of those places and ask yourself the following three questions for each item:
- Does this relate back to one of my three supporting goals? (if you haven’t defined those yet you can do that here)
- Do I want my readers to get distracted by this?
- Do I want this to shape my readers’ image of me?
If you answered “no” to any of those questions you should consider removing that item from your blog.
Let’s go over a couple of examples.
Here’s how I would go about deciding whether to remove my sidebar ads:
Do these ads relate back to one of my three supporting goals? Yes, I’d like to make a full-time income through my blog
Do I want my readers to get distracted by this? No, not if it means they won’t be paying attention to my actual content
Do I want this to shape my readers’ image of me? No, I want to be seen as someone who provides value
So, in this case, I would remove my sidebar ads.
Now let’s decide whether I should keep my footer’s email opt-in:
Does this opt-in relate to one of my three goals? Yes, I’d like to build trust through providing valuable free content
Do I want my readers to get distracted by this? Yes, we’re all about the opt-ins!
Do I want this to shape my readers’ image of me? Yes, I want to be known for providing valuable content.
My footer opt-in fares much better than my poor sidebar ads. The opt-in is staying!
So to give you a few more examples, here are things that you may end up removing:
- Plugin for a social media platform you’re not active on
- Links to other peoples’ blogs in your footer
- Email opt-ins that don’t deliver value to subscribers
And here are a few things that you’ll probably choose to keep around:
- Plugin for your main social media platform
- About section in sidebar
- Opt-in with valuable incentive
How Are You Going To Clean Up Your Blog?
I hope you’re inspired to do some cleanup and increase focus for yourself and your readers.
What things are you going to remove?