Giving My Blog a Spruce: Tips For Sprucing Up Your Blog

I've been giving my blog a spruce this week, and I also have some tips for sprucing up your blog too!  I haven't been blogging lately, and I'm going to talk about why in an upcoming post.  I just have to gather my thoughts, because what I have to talk about is really scary and difficult for me.  Hopefully, you'll still love me when I talk about some of that real life stuff.

In the meantime though, I have finally found the energy and the strength to start sprucing my blog.  I really want to move forward with making this a blog biz, but in order for me to do that, I knew I needed to make some necessary changes and clear out the clutter.  Believe it or not, our blogs can get all clogged up!

Sometimes our blogs get cluttered with bad energy, from negative thoughts we may have, stemming from limiting beliefs about what were capable of as bloggers.  Maybe, like me, you've had people telling you, that it's impossible to turn a blog into a profitable business.  Maybe your under intense pressure to bay the bills and keep a roof over your head, whatever the case I get it.

The problem with all of those limiting beliefs, is that they clog up the pipes that run through the interstellar highway that is your blog.  With these new, sparkling insights, it finally dawned on me.  In my life, whenever I have a problem, I like to clean my house or do some sort of de-cluttering project, and that's when a solution comes.  So, why couldn't that work for a blog too?

Blog Spruce Changes

The first thing I did was take a look at my categories and tags.  They were weighing me down.  I realized that less is more, so I carefully went through and only kept the tags that were relevant to each post, down to as minimal as possible.  For categories, I decided to cut down on the clutter, and narrow it down to six, which wasn't easy.

For bigger blogs with multiple authors, it may be a helpful to have lots and lots of categories.  I write all the posts for this blog and this blog is based on me, Laurali Star, and my life, and the people that are an extension of me.  It's a lifestyle blog at heart.  Therefore, I think six categories works really well for what I'm trying to do here.

Part of working on the categories, was so that I could figure out exactly what I want to focus on in my writing.  In addition to that, I think I am finally ready to share my book series with my readers, which is a really brave step for me.

I've been talking about doing it for years, but it gave me anxiety to share my fiction work with the world.  I think before, I wasn't able to share, because I only had a general picture of the book series that I wanted to write.

Recently, things have become more clear, so storytelling is definitely on the agenda for me.  I'll go into more of that notion and delve into my other categories more, in just a moment.

I'm also working on changing all of the first pictures in my blog, to what I have now.  That way everything is cohesive and aesthetically pleasing.  The first picture is the most important and it should also be named (alt tag) after the post that you are writing for SEO purposes.

I have a clear picture now of what I want to write about and where I want to take this blog.  I went through a very confused phase, where I don't think I was writing from the heart.

To an extent I was, but not really.  I always write best when I write about what I know and what I want to know, or hope to become.

I think my depression, acting as a dark curtain of sorts, may have had a lot to do with how confused I was.  Like I said before, I will definitely be talking about it in an upcoming post, because depression and anxiety can definitely affect concentration and focus.

Another thing I will be doing, is combing through old posts to see if I can revamp them.  Anything that doesn't seem relevant to my life now or to the focus of the blog, has already been deleted.
Life is mercurial, especially when we lose focus.  Now that I understand the intention behind my blog, I can make some magic happen!

Tada! New Blog Categories

Here are my six categories, check them out!  Let me give you a brief overview of why I chose them.
Blog Biz is sorta an obvious one.  I want to talk about the business of blogging and blogging in general from time to time.  I already had a lot of material under this category, so it only made sense to keep with it.  Thus, this post today!

Herbivore is about my vegan lifestyle.  For some reason, even though it's something that is deeply embedded in my life, I haven't talked about it much, except in passing.  I also want to talk about the fact that I'm "mostly raw" now, and how it's become a permanent fixture in my life.  I'd also like to share some of my recipes or ways in which someone can do the vegan thing or the mostly raw thing.  It's super-important to me, and it should be talked about on this vegan's blog.

Holistic Health is about alternative methods for fitness, health, and diet, and healing.  Healing the mind, body, soul, and heart.  It's something that I value and is very much apart of my life.  In my daily life, people come to me for remedies to detox, lose weight, or for energy healing.  I want to talk about that more here.

Indie Life is about my life.  I live an alternative lifestyle.  There's a lot of topics that I'd really like to talk about, especially in the supernatural realm.  I used to talk about it a lot and then, I just didn't anymore.  In addition to that, I'm kind of old school and tech savvy at the same time.  This means I'm going to delve more into the obscure indie music I listen to, talk about raw topics that most people shy away from, and my very non-traditional style of parenting. Mi casa, su casa!

Nostalgia is where I record milestones, holidays, birthdays, and life events.  It's also where I look back on the past fondly and contemplate where I'm going next.  This category has been around forever and it never gets old to me.

Storytelling is where you'll get to experience my book series and poetry.  This book idea has been hidden away in the confines of my mind, since I was in my twenties.  If you're a writer, you'll know what I mean when I say it's "the one."  I will also talk about the writer's life here as well.  Haven't you ever wondered about the secret life of a writer?

Tips For Sprucing Up Your Blog

  • Delete all of your tags and categories, so you can start with a clean slate.  Narrow your categories down to what's most important for you to write about and then use it as an umbrella for your tags.  For example, all blog posts go under the category Blog Biz and all tags under blogging are filed as Blog Life.  Keep it simple, keep it clean.
  • Change the first image of every post and name it after the article.  The first picture makes the first impression and if it's labeled properly, then it will get picked up for SEO. 
  • Spruce old blog posts.  If you revamp old blog posts, it increases it's value.  You may be able to add more relevant keywords to your old blog posts, dress up the old pictures with better alt tags, and add in newsletter signups, and things of that nature.
  • Recover Dropped Features.  I've even seen people do this on popular blogs.  They'll do a feature and then it will suddenly drop off the face of the planet.  That's what happened to me with the Mermaid Detox Diet, so I'm bringing that back.  I had one add on, this one, and then I stopped writing it.  Can't honestly tell you why.
  • Delete all posts that are no longer relevant.  They are dead weight to your blog.  In writing, we call this Kill Your Darlings.  
  • Make Your Blog Page a Homepage.  This can be a literal homepage or it can be your actual blog page.  I'm going to be working on that next.  I'll be changing my site tagline, re-opening my blogshop, and using my footer to create more of a homepage look to my blog.  I also have a New Reader? Start, that acts as a second landing page.  I'll be sprucing that up too!
  • Cleanup your archive page.  I'm going to be adding pictures to mine and making it look and feel more user-friendly.  I believe every blog should have either one or several archive pages, depending on your template.  
  • Delete old pages or restore old pages.  I have a few pages that are just sitting around collecting dust.  I'm either going to cut them loose or breathe new life into them.
  • Dream up new features and revitalize current ones.  I really like my feature, Laurali's Workouts: A Fitness Journal For Working Out At Home, but it feels like something is lacking.  I'm devising a way to make it better.  I was thinking that I'd like it to be more inspirational to my readers in some way, so look for that in the nearby future.  
Well, there you have it!  Tips for sprucing up a blog.  It's a job, but it's totally worth it.  You might consider doing it as a fun weekend project, because as weird as it is to say, it is kinda fun.  It will bring sparkling fresh energy back into your blog!

About Author:

Hi! I'm Laurali. I'm a plant lady, a girly nature lover, a spirit animal, and I remind people of unicorns. It's all in a day's work!

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