Producing and publishing a blog post might appear easy. Writing an effective blog post for your target audience can get a bit overwhelming at first. Especially, in cases where you have to do everything by yourself. Amidst all of this pressure, chances are high that you might unintentionally skip fundamental things that can make or break your post.
Given our extensive experiences and several instances of “lesson-learned” situations, we have created this checklist to ensure your first time venturing into the blogging space is as smooth as possible.
These are the steps that we have never strayed from for over a year now, and every time they have proved themselves to be very effective. We recommend you adhere to them before and after publishing each blog post.
12 Steps To Publish A Blog Post
1. Finalize Blog Niche/ Title
There are a lot of blog genres such as ideas, hacks, tips, experiences, or reviews to write about. Brainstorm the ideas and narrow them down to one niche.
It is imperative that you spend a considerable amount of time finalizing a clickable blog title or headline.
2. Do Keyword Research
We are aware that this topic can be discussed extensively in a blog post of itself. But the short of it is, keyword research does proportionally aid you in ranking your content on the first page of Google. Once the blog topic is finalized, we do basic keyword research from Google and the other tools available online.
It is important that you don’t skip this step while writing any blog post. We can assure you that expertise comes with a consistent experience.
3. Draft The Content
By this time, you’re aware of the message you wish to convey to your ideal audience. Draft an outline in bullets or short broken sentences. There are no hard and fast rules here. The idea is to put your idea and your thoughts to paper. Once that is done, you can draft and make corrections later on.
4. Finalize The Content
Expand upon each point and provide comprehensive details that would inform the reader. Set the tone and stick to it until the very end for an engaging and confident blog post. Research and seek out ideas that are more creative ways to better explain your content.
Optimizing and improving your draft is vital as the quality of your content is what makes your audience socially engage with your posts frequently.
5. Grammar & Spell Checks
Everybody likes to read content that is free of silly spelling mistakes. Good grammar makes the content more readable. Grammar and spelling are not imperative skillsets when it comes to communication. As long as the audience comprehends what you are communicating with relative ease, effective communication has been established. However, especially when it comes to written content, grammar and spelling play a major role in providing credibility to your content. Readers need to be able to trust the writer to appreciate, use and share the information, and grammar and spelling go a long way in establishing that trust.
Using browser extensions like Grammarly would help you correct the basic mistakes in your writing. Proofreading your content with fresh eyes and a blank perspective will also ensure you are conveying information in the manner you intended.
6. Select & Edit Media
Choose images from your digital library or online (royalty free) that are relevant to your blog topic. Also, ensure that due credit is given if you are using another person’s picture or a picture taken by another person. The next step is you edit the selected media like color correction, spot removal in Lightroom, adding text on images in Canva or Photoshop, etc.
You can also integrate maps, videos, and other visual content to engage your readers.
7. Submit For Editing & Review
In our case, we hired an editor to review our content from the beginning to ensure the quality of the content produced is beyond reproach. However, outsourcing is entirely your choice and not an industry standard. If you are confident in your writing skills or have some prior experience (that does not include insta captions), you most likely would not require an editor.
To ensure that the content is received as intended, it takes back-to-back comments or several rounds of discussion. Once the editor has reviewed it, we go through the blog once again and make changes wherever needed.
8. Draft The Content In WordPress
Once the content is finalized, the next step is to copy and paste them onto WordPress or your website. This includes structuring the paragraphs under the relevant heading tags, adding the Table of Contents (TOC) section, and setting the internal and external links to open on a new tab (yep, every trivial thing matters).
9. Add Visual Contents
After drafting the content on your website, it is time for you to add media content like images, gifs, or videos. Make sure the media name resonates with the topic. The Alt (alternative) text and the description of the media should also complement the overall content.
For instance, IMG1023446.jpg is a bad image name; whereas <a-place-name>.jpg is an acceptable one. So, if someone searches that particular place on Google, the image has a good chance of appearing during their image search. It is one of the easier ways to generate organic traffic from Google.
Note: Alt text is an HTML IMG attribute that appears when the image does not load for any reason. Google considers Alt text as a ranking factor.
10. Verify The SEO Checks
An equally important step to writing a blog of quality is to make sure your blog post is SEO (Search Engine Optimization) friendly.
Plugins like Rank Math and Yoast have a checklist, giving you a score (out of 100) based on how SEO-optimized your blog is. They also provide meaningful suggestions for improvements to increase your score. We make sure that every blog post has a score of at least 80% or higher. Achieving and sticking to this objective is a great introduction to handling SEO requirements. You can get more information by taking a free certification from Google to get familiarized with the fundamentals. Learning from YouTube and articles from Google search central have been of great aid to us.
11. Hit Publish
Before publishing, check once if the URL of the blog is as per your expectation, and do one last grammar and spell check. Because, why not?
Examine the preview of your post once and Voila! Your blog is ready to be published.
Hold on! Your work as a blogger does not end after publishing the blog post.
12. Promote The Content
After your content is out, it does not reach your audience right away. The online platform is as massive as it is inclusive. This means your intended reader will not even be aware of your post once you publish. You have to announce it to your readers. There are several ways to accomplish this — email subscription list, Pinterest, Instagram, or on any other social media platform.
You can also write about relevant posts or answer questions on Reddit or Quora and add backlinks to your website. This not only increases your DA (Domain Authority) but also helps in reaching out to more people.
We are more aware than anyone that each of these steps takes a considerable amount of time and effort for you to complete. But this step-by-step process will enable you to stay organized and not miss any of the individual important tasks that together produce the ideal blog post. We assure you that though the learning curve might seem steep, it is most certainly accomplishable.
Most importantly, it is a chance for you to express your voice in a more wholesome manner where it can be an instrument of information, aid, or even motivation to someone else. So do not let missteps halt you, keep at it and you will master blogging with constant and consistent practice. Take it from us, the journey is truly entertaining!!
If you found the blog informative, do leave a comment below. If you feel more steps can be added to our list, do comment on them as well. We strive to perpetually improve.