Archive for blog formatting

Better Business Blogs:
Correct Those Broken Links

business-blogsAre you keeping your business blog fresh? If you’re like me, and you’ve been blogging for a number of years, chances are some of your links may no longer work. This guest post, from Susan Boggs, offers tips for successful bloggers and blogs on how to find and correct broken links.

In a perfect world, we would always know exactly what the Big Search Engines want from us and our business blogs, always and without a doubt. We would engrave them into stone and follow them judiciously. Our blogs would rank high for our keywords, and life would be wonderful.

Ah, yes, nirvana.

Unfortunately, in this world we call the Internet, blogging is not always quite that simple. The good news?

Life is still wonderful. Read More→

How to Write Blog Posts: Awesome Graphic

Do you know how to write blog posts so that they actually get read? Some people think blogging is easy: Write it and it will be read. If you’ve ever written a blog post, you know that’s not true, and it’s hard to craft a post people will read. This infographic was created for Salesforce Canada and it says it all; it will help you put together a share-worthy post.

Click To Enlarge

Anatomy of a Blog Post

Via Salesforce

Blogging Strategies for
End-of-Year Business Blogs

How are you doing on your business blogging strategies for 2015?  Have you been hitting the targets and benchmarks you set for yourself?

I don’t believe in making New Year’s resolutions, but after 15+ years working with executive coaches and consultants, I know that having clearly defined goals and expectations for a business blog or website is critical to help you get found, get known, and get clients. Setting strategies and goals will improve how you show up on the Web.

If you haven’t set any goals, or you’re just starting out, here’s how you can still get in the game and get some traction in 2015. Read More→

Blog Design Blink Test:
Simple, Easy Navigation

Navigation and SimplicityIn order to impress visitors and showcase your business expertise, your blog must pass the “blink” test.

As I mentioned in my previous post, your blog design must incorporate three critical elements:

  1. Branding/Personality (Banners, logo, photos)
  2. Navigation/Simplicity (Layout, use of white space and read more)
  3. Quality Content (Problems you solve for your readers)


Your blog design should offer easy navigation, easy ways to find solutions to their problems.

Read More→

Does Your Blog Pass the Blink Test?
3 Critical Blog “Must Haves”

Blink TestDoes your blog pass the blink test? Content is king, but if your design stinks, visitors won’t get past the banner. They won’t stay, they won’t get to know you and they won’t subscribe to your blog.

I mentioned this in my previous post: in order to impress visitors and showcase your business expertise, your site must pass the “blink” test.  If it doesn’t, you could be spending a lot of your valuable time blogging for nothing.

Bad blog design = bad marketing = no new business. Stinks, doesn’t it?

The three critical blog “must have” elements you need to consider:

  1. Branding/Personality (Banners, logo, photos)
  2. Navigation/Simplicity (Layout, use of white space and read more)
  3. Content (Problems you solve for your readers)


Read More→

The Biggest Mistake Business Bloggers Make (and how to avoid it!)

Oops!The biggest mistake business bloggers make is that they are frequently ego-centric. This isn’t necessarily all bad, it simply doesn’t bring the blogging results that smart professionals expect.

Bloggers are so passionate about their message and their expertise, they preach. They shout. They proclaim. They implore. They explain. They document and support their logic.

But they forget about that old background tune that repeats in the head of all readers: “What’s in it for me?” Bloggers assume that their readers are like them and interested in the same things.

How to Avoid Bad Blogging

If you want good advice, refer to the classics. There’s no better style writing advice than The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B.White. Here are 10 tips that adapt Strunk and White’s advice to blog writing (the first 8 are from Dean Rieck over on Copyblogger and is titled The Ultimate Blogger Writing Guide): Read More→

Scannable Blog Posts:
Is Your Web Content Worthy of a Once Over?

Business-Blogging-Content-MarketingIs your web content worthy of a once over? Do your readers find it attractive – that is, easily scannable and interesting? If not, you are missing opportunities to connect with your readers and make a lasting impression.

Last week I posted that quality web content is short, sweet, smart and funny. Here is a great example that I found over on, and I want to share it with you: Read More→

A Checklist for a Good Blog

Blog-checklistAfter I got home from our Publishing at Sea cruise, I checked out the good blogs of our amazing group of authors, including those of our experts, like Judith Briles! Of course, as writers, they all had important things to say on their blogs. But some weren’t really optimized for best results.

Here’s what I look for in an optimized, good blog (one that gets Google search and reader results):

  1. A good blog title with a tag line that says what people will find on this blog (benefits to reader)
  2. An email subscription sign up button such as an RSS icon
  3. A good blog post title that makes me want to read the full post
  4. A compelling image with each post
  5. Hyperlinks – at least one per 120 words so that posts are identifiable to search engines.
  6. Recent posts or no date on them: If posts aren’t at least once a week (twice is better) then I don’t want to see a date on the posts -which alerts me to the fact you haven’t posted in a month … or six! Read More→

Is Your Business Blog Sexy?
4 Simple Ways to Get More Blog Readers

Like-Love-by-stuart-milesWhen it comes to business blogging, many professionals forget that there is more to it than getting information out on the page. The appeal of business blogs and sites has a lot to do with readers’ impressions.

How can you make your business blog visually appealing, even sexy? Blog formatting is key; in fact, it makes the difference between readers scanning and leaving, and staying to read. Here are four simple ways you can jazz up your site and get more blog readers:

  1. Add images –I have run across many business blogs that are nothing but pages and pages of text. While the information they provide may be valuable, it’s not very visually appealing. Try to add images to your blog posts to increase the appeal of your posts. Smaller images can easily be found for free on sites like or you can pay a small amount for access to larger sized stock photos. By providing your blog post with a relevant image you can increase the number of readers and also grab the image search queries for your blog post topic. Read More→

How to Avoid Problems with Hyphens and Dashes…

Have you ever encountered this problem when blogging or writing content marketing?

Because of the informal nature of writing on a blog, or for online ezines, people now write like they speak – you know what I mean? Instead of commas or semi-colons, everyone uses dashes to interject phrases – just like the way we talk.

But everyone uses them differently! Forget the Chicago Manual of Style! As I read through other great blogs, I see lots of variations on the use of hyphens and dashes:

1. People use a double hyphen–like this. Sometimes with a space on both sides — like this, sometimes with no spaces on either side.

2. People use a hyphen instead of a dash. This is most likely because the dash is not on the keyboard. You have to find it under symbols and who wants to take time to do that?

3. People use an en dash instead of the em dash. An en dash is the shorter version of the em dash. With an en dash there is a space on both sides – with an em dash, there are no spaces—you just put it in.

Am I the only one who cares about this? If we are not going to follow the rules of academia as outlined in the manuals, are we inventing new usages because of the lack of a dash on the keyboard?

(WordPress tip: you can insert custom characters found in the omega icon in your wysiwyg editor.)

I feel like the author of Eats, Shoots & Leaves (Lynn Truss)…my inner stickler is on the loose.

Let’s all get together and decide: if we use a hyphen instead of a dash, let’s make it just one with spaces on both sides – like this, okay? Personally, I prefer the em dash with spaces on both sides — but that’s not supposed to be correct.

Unless you write in to tell me you’d prefer something else, I’ll keep on doing that and assume you agree with me…